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In March of 1979 I spent a couple of days visiting my maternal grandmother, Fannie Wasserman, during her stay at the Hotel Carlyle in Miami Beach, Florida. At that time it was a place where primarily elderly Jewish people, mostly widows of relatively modest means, sought refuge from the cold New York winters. The area was not yet the hip South Beach of Miami Vice fame .... far from it. The hotels had long lost their luster. But there was the beach, and it was cool in its own funky art deco way. Since I was not the hotel's usual clientele who rented by the month or season, I was lucky to get a room. I think it cost me about 15 dollars a night. Fancy it was not.
My idea was simple: hang out, bond with grandma and shoot personal pictures. Who knew if I would ever have that opportunity again. Who ever knows?
My grandma was a strong, resilient, funny, wonderful woman who overcame adversity and gave unconditional love -- all with a heavy Yiddish accent.
The pictures printed here are frames from scans of the original 35mm contact sheets showing the red or yellow grease pencil marks indicating it was a select. They are not high resolution scans of the negatives for gorgeous print quality. They are simply made like this little book -- a modest token of remembrance for all the Fannies ... our grandmas, bubbes, nannas and moms, who were instrumental in making us who and what we are today.
And often with a heavy Yiddish accent.
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