My cousin Georgia (aka Gogoula) passed away on Saturday, September 27, 2003. She is the daughter of John and Kiki Filias.
About 11 days ago, she had an aneurysm in the back of her brain. This aneurysm hemorrhaged (from what I understand) and the back of her brain had a large amount of blood collected. The doctors were hoping this blood would get absorbed, naturally. It didn’t. She never got better. She leaves behind a loving husband, a 9 year old girl, Joanna, and a 14 year old boy, Bill.
Along with my entire family, I am very saddened by this. I used to have 13 cousins. Now I have 11. I’ve lost Gus and Gogoula.
I am so glad I had a chance to go to Greece a few times in recent years, as an adult. Having relatives so far away is a 50/50 situation. Half the time, it makes things much easier in terms of obligations, holidays, etc. But the other half of the time, it makes thing have this sort of “helpless” feeling/situation. I would want nothing more in the world than to be in Greece right now, about 8:30AM, as they prepare to get ready for her funeral.
Having this barrier (Atlantic Ocean) between us makes it kind of shitty. I had the opportunity to mourn her loss this morning with my family here, at Dino’s house. Gina is up North camping, with her friends, so she’ll have to mourn on her own when she gets back. Sorry, Gina.
Anyway, Gogoula was always so nice and hospitable to me, Michelle, and my friends. Every time we came to the bar they run in the Summer, we were treated like royalty. Carte blance treatment all the way. I remember the last time we were there, Michelle was out near the water, and I was hanging out in the small kitchen with her. She made me some munchies to eat. Some French Fries and some cheese. It was delicious while I sucked down a few beers in the middle of the day!
One of the most striking memories I had with her was when I went to Greece in 1988, alone, for two months. I think I spent the night at her place for one or two nights. We hung out all day and night. And the part I’ll never forget was that we rented a movie on VHS called The Day After. It was a movie that aired in the U.S. during the Cold War, when the entire planet was afraid of a globalthermonuclear war. It was a movie that was very shocking for the general public. It showed what it would be like, physically, mentally, and emotionally, if the United States was attacked by nuclear weapons. I had always wanted to see it at home, but I missed it. Gogoula was cool enough to have a VCR (pretty cool at the time in Agios Vasilios, Greece). I had a blast with her, those few days in the Summer of 1988.
I’ll miss you, cousin!