A Family Heirloom Is Passed Along

My aunt, Arpie Vartanesian, has decided to sell her condo
and move into an independent living apartment at a senior’s complex nearby.

Robyn (L) and Arpie (R) preparing Boorma
She’d been thinking about this for several years, gathering alluring brochures from a number of places.

To help her decide, she invited Doug and me along with another niece, Arlene Pinajian, to join her on a tour of the place she liked best. Before long, we could see that Aunt Arpie had already mentally moved in.

To clinch the deal, she was allowed to spend 4 days & 3 nights there – free of charge – to check it all out, from the living, dining, and entertainment aspects. A done deal.

To help prepare for the move, Aunt Arpie had the ladies come and help sort through years of paperwork and personal belongings. Doug and I had our own special day with her. While she and I cleaned out closets, Doug was in charge of going through some of Uncle Walt’s things that Aunt Arpie couldn’t part with. Uncle Walt, my mother’s brother, passed away in 2002.

As we moved into the kitchen, Aunt Arpie said she had two things in particular that she wanted me to have. One was a round, metal pan that was my grandmother’s; the one she used for making “sarma gurgood”- a cracked wheat salad, similar to eetch, or tabbouleh.

The other was the DOWEL.

If you haven’t seen the video of my Aunt Arpie demonstrating how to make boorma, click this link. Wait, before you do, you should know the significance of the dowel: When making boorma, the dowel is used to shape it.

Aunt Arpie’s dowel was handed down to her from her mother – and now to me.

A treasured heirloom, indeed!

Thank you, Aunt Arpie, and best wishes in your new home!
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  1. Bonnie September 17, 2009 at 3:15 pm

    Now you have to teach Mandy to make boorma and tell her: Some day, this dowel will be yours!


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