Gather round my children…it is I. Faith Honeybee Setley. Here once again to tell a tale of dreams and love and the stuff of novels. So get your drinks and your popcorn and snuggle in close whilst I share what I know thusfar bout the life of Frank Gardiner and his love for his lady fair.
Frank Gardiner…was and is my gramps…although I never got the chance to meet him. Born in Low Green Knottingly Yorkshire England in 1891. I say what I know thusfar as I do have more info written down on him somewhere here but yet to locate it due all the things that have been happening in my life and now sorting my flat. As soon as I find my sheets…I will update I promise you.
Born to Joseph Gardiner and Louisa Greene Gardiner..and having 7 siblings…there isn’t alot I know bout his life in England save he became a boy Minister at a very young age. What I can tell you is that on the boat coming to Canada when a teenager…his life completely changed when he met his true love Mabel Harriett Harlow …aka…my Nan.
Once here…after getting to know one another on the great ship of destiny…they parted ways and went about their separate lives..specially since Mable was younger than Frank. But their journeys here were both about a means to an end– making a better life.
During their time apart…Frank met and fell in love with another lady..built her a home and planned to settle down, but alas it was not meant to be. The fickle fingers of fate were in the works and he found himself alone and surprisingly was reunited with…Mabel Harlow!
They reconnected and fell in love and married when he was 28 in 1919. Settling in Hanover Ontario in a little house down by the developing railway tracks where nary another house stood for the longest time. Property at that time was a mere pittance…but so were the wages you earned. They turned their house into a home for 31yrs. As well the land into a flourishing sea of rich gardens…complete…with a wandering minstrel of an outhouse and a never ending supply of Sears and Roebucks to um…well you know.
They joined the Salvation Army and he played in the band there and raised 7 children (seems to be a theme here…) As well the exact same combination as Frank’s siblings himself-4 girls and 3 boys. These Merry band of minstrels I will tell you about in further blogs…cause my Mum be one of um!
He worked hard in the factories- both Wright Speisz furniture LTD. and as a Stationary Engineer at Peppler Brothers LTD. Pepplers was the place Gramps worked for the last 3 yrs of his life.
He was a stern but loving Father…and two of my Mums funniest recollections of this fine chap were…his hair. Which no matter how hard he tried as he got older became more unruly with age. He would say he had naturally wavy hair–one hair would stand up and wave at the others! And then there was the time when Mum learned to drive….and…oh! I will save that little gem for another blog!
He loved Mabel with a passion…but he also had a severe heart condition and one winter’s night -just clocking out– he collapsed with a heart attack behind a wood pile on factory property. He should have gone to hospital but wanted desperately to see the face of the woman he loved just one more time. So he tried to get in his car and was so frantic that he flooded the engine. In the cold and praying to God to be in the arms of his soulmate once more he braved the snow and walked home. Nan was in the kitchen down the hall in a house filled with warmth and love…making their anniversary cake…their 50yrs anniversary cake. Frank did not stop at the door to put his hand over his mouth and let his paining heart and aching lungs adjust to the heat from the cold blustery night air…he just staggered down the hall and as Mabel turned round…he collapsed into her arms…and said his last good-bye.
But what of our fair lass Mabel? What happened to her? Ahhh my lovelies…THAT be a tale for part 2
Hope you enjoyed this episode of -AN UNSINKABLE LOVE as much as I enjoy having you all as part of my world…Stay safe in your slumber tonight…dream dreams of hope…love and be loved…and never give up.
Til we meet again tomorrow–Love and hugs–Faith Honeybee Setley and Logan