We didn’t have Valentine’s Day when I grew up in Riga, Latvia; however, we celebrated Women’s Day, which was commonly called “The Day of Eighth of March”. Women were honored with flowers and candies, and men would get drunk to honor the women in their lives. The holiday, which is known as International Women’s Day is celebrated as a focal point in the movement for women’s rights. The event started in New York in 1909, but in 1910, at the International Socialist Women’s Conference, German revolutionary Clara Zetkin proposed that the 8th of March be honored as a day annually in memory of working women.
What prompted me to write about this important event was a book I received as a present from a gutsy woman, Dr. Angela Wu, whom I recently helped to get a reverse mortgage. Dr. Wu pioneered the recognition of Chinese Medicine in the Bay Area and was a professor at San Francisco State University and is the author of the book “Fertility Wisdom”.
The book she gave me was written by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Chelsea Clinton titled “The Book of Gutsy Women”. It shares stories of about 120 remarkable women from all over the world. After Hillary Clinton ran for the President of the United States in 2016, she paved the road and in 2019 there were six women who followed her footsteps. There are many remarkable women in the world besides those who were mentioned in “Gutsy Women”. Thirty-four years young Finland’s new female prime minister, Sana Marin, leads a coalition government made up of five parties, all of them led by women. Four of those women are under 35. We do not have to travel too far to find gutsy women. In July 2018 London Breed, became the first black female Mayor of San Francisco. But I would like to go even closer. Since my birth seventy-three years ago, I have been surrounded by gutsy women. After giving birth to three children, my mom went back to school while still working as a teacher. When I met my wife Elfa fifty-two years ago, I also met her mother, another gutsy woman, who survived two World Wars, starvation, losing her infant son to hunger during the war, and taking care of my wife as a single parent (her husband died when Elfa was 10). And of course there is my wife, who not only was gutsy to marry me when we were both twenty, but as a life partner, we’ve traveled together through a challenging life, overcoming two emigrations and for over thirty-five years running a mortgage company together. And of course both of my daughters, Alona and Tamar, who are gutsy women in their own way.
March 8th is the date of the celebration. I am sure you know at least one woman (does not have to be gutsy, though many of them are) who deserves your special attention.
P.S. Flowers are always appreciated, and this is why I am sharing these four beautiful images with you. To get them, I went to Golden Gate Park, where they were planted in front of the Flower Pavilion.
Enjoy and Share with a Friend.