International Women's Month Collection: Sally W.

I was extremely lucky to interview my favorite grandmother and California research consultant. She is the absolute best. 

Kaylyn Gabbert: You are one of the few family members I can tell almost anything to when we email back and forth including when I tell you the summaries of my horror books, a genre you're not into. Have you always been nonjudgmental?

Sally W.: If I’m nonjudgmental with you, it’s a bit of a miracle.  I’m certainly not so with others.

KG: I want to thank you so much for your kindness and for not judging me for so much. I have so few family members I'm biologically related to that I still talk to this day, so I truly treasure our relationship. I always have since I was a kid. I still remember the song you taught me when I was a small kid, your pool and how much I loved it, even before I could swim. I remember you visiting us in Colorado, and all the cool places we went with you and Grandpa. 

KG: How long were you and Grandpa together? 

SW: Grandpa and I were together about 35 years.

KG: What was your wedding to Grandpa like? 

SW: Grandpa and I got married in a beautiful little town, Woodstock, Vermont.  It was just the two of us, and it was outside at the foot of a covered bridge with a river flowing below.  It was lovely.

KG: What made you and Grandpa decide on moving to the Ranch so long ago? 

SW: Moving to the ranch was more like a six-step process.  I left Lockheed, we bought a piece of property in Prunedale, we bought a temporary house in Los Banos…….and on it went.  But I guess we were up for some kind of adventure.  After living and working in the city for so long, something different seemed appealing.

KG: I absolutely love your ranch. There's so much to do there. What's your favorite way to relax?

SW: My favorite way to relax is being out front hearing the waterfall.  I can be sitting on the patio or fiddling in the yard, but hearing that water movement is very satisfying and relaxing.  Or I can be reading, sitting in a chair in the patio.

KG: When did you realize you had such a passion for taking care of animals of all kinds?

SW: I had a desire to befriend animals from toddler stage.  I’d go up to any animal as though it were my friend.  I was lucky I never encountered a problem.

KG: Do you have a favorite animal? For some reason, I see it being very hard for you to be able to pick out a favorite. 

SW: I’ve been volunteering at a place called Nature of Wildworks, and I really like the hedgehog.  A hedgehog is interesting to look at and they’re gentle.

KG: Also, do you ever get annoyed when I ask you about the California weather or animal care for my books? I find asking people who live in the area or who experience taking care of animals are sometimes better than asking the internet. 

SW: I don’t recall getting annoyed.  I think I understand your desire to get info from PEOPLE rather than from a library (internet).


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