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A Tribute to Ginnie Bedggood (1943-2010)

Ginnie Bedggood - author of QuisqueyaI was very sad today to receive an email from Grahame Bush, Ginnie’s partner, telling me that Ginnie had suddenly and unexpectedly passed away on the evening of 3 July.  I wanted to write a tribute to this feisty lady who, among many other things, was a staunch supporter of BE.

Ginnie was eccentric, energetic, and enthusiastic about her life abroad in the Dominican Republic (DR). She first contacted me several years ago because she had written an article about how to survive and thrive in DR.

This was typical of Ginnie – always wanting to help people.  You can read more about her on her own website.

Ginnie went on to write a book: Quisqueya: Mad Dogs and English Couple about her and Grahame’s life in DR.  I had an email from her just a couple of weeks ago telling me that she’d written another book which is due to be published in September this year.  She said she hoped we were still at the same address because that’s where she’d told the publisher to send us a copy.  It’s not arrived yet but I know I’ll feel sad when it does.  I always like to receive books to review, but reading this new one will be clouded by knowing that Ginnie is no longer with us.

In typical Ginnie style she was always encouraging me, whether it was to write a book myself or concern for us when we were caught up in some political turbulence, and she was one of the very first people to write and say how much she liked our new-look website.  She spent much of her time showing great care and concern for the people she met, although she despised corruption and fought hard against it.  I’m sure she made a much better friend than an enemy.

Sadly, I never met Ginnie in the real world but through the Internet she became a good friend and I deeply regret her passing.  I wish now that I had spent more time getting to know her better, but I always seem to have thousands of emails to deal with and I never really took the time to correspond more regularly with her.  I guess I just thought she’d always be around.  A missed opportunity and my loss.

Ginnie knew that we had a forum for the DR and introduced us to Grahame, who quickly became the moderator of that forum and single-handedly fields all the questions we receive about DR.

She also introduced us to Razvan Petrescu, a Romanian and global nomad.  Razvan wrote loads of articles for us including a guide to his native land. We subsequently met Razvan in Bangkok and are still in touch but our paths rarely seem to cross and our plans to meet up again keep being thwarted for one reason or another.

Ginnie’s memorial service (wake) will be held next week in DR.  We won’t be able to attend but I will certainly be thinking of her and will raise a glass in her memory. In his email telling us of Ginnie’s passing, Grahame referred to “The Old Girl” as being “bloody obstinate” – yes, she was my kind of person.  And Grahame will carry on where Ginnie left off with her many campaigns and projects.  It will be a tough act to follow.

I’ll just end this tribute now by sending Grahame my condolences and best wishes for the future.  Somehow words such as “with deepest sympathy” and “sincere condolences” seem totally inadequate.  But I know Ginnie wouldn’t want us all to mope around so instead let’s end on a more upbeat note.  Ginnie was one of those people who make the world a better place and it was a privilege and a pleasure to have known her.

PG Author: Kay McMahon

Kay has been an expat for nearly 30 years. She set up the British Expat website back in early 2000, whilst living in London and missing the expat life. These days she spends much of her time lugging computers and cameras around the world. (Dave gets to deal with all the really heavy stuff.)

9 Comments

Grahame Bush 11-04-2011, 18:27

Sorry ALL, I have not been around much for a long time. When you get kicked in the stomach & that is followed by a kick in the proverbials, you tend to take quite some while to recover. Add to this that My Mother passed away just over two weeks ago & you might understand how I feel right now!!

I have not been in to visit the Dominican Republic page for some time – I’ll do that right after writing this. I will TRY to pick up my duties as a moderator & continue to help answer the questions penned there!

Any aspiring writer wanting to take up the duties of writing the DR news on Ginnie’s web page, please get in touch – I am all ears! No PAY of course as it was all voluntary work by Ginnie, but the cudos & experience is good reward!!

Best regards to all ~ Grahame
(PS for Kay. The date of Ginnie’s death was 3rd JULY. It was her BIRTHDAY on 3rd June! Two dates in 2011 I am NOT looking forward to!!)

Mercedes de Marchena 25-05-2015, 02:36

I have no words…how did it take me so long to hear this? I found Ginnie when I was looking into publishing my book about moving and living in Curaçao (Such is Life in the Tropics) in 2006. She helped so much and we kept in touch for a while. She even let me in on some writing assignments……..then I moved, I changed computers (none of these is an excuse for not following on our connection, really). Today, I was going through old emails and found hers. Decided to get in touch again and found this. I am so sad, she would have like my new blog, she always encouraged me to get a better blog or just fix my old one (expatinthetropics.blogspot.com). I never met her, but she was absolutely wonderful.

Erica Davis 10-06-2015, 17:27

So sorry to hear this news. Ginnie was my teacher and personal tutor. She was an inspiration to us all. Her enthusiasm for life was infectious. She taught me so much and was such a positive role model. We both had a passion for travel and would talk about our adventures in Africa. She would have loved her time in the Dominican Republic and would have embraced everything that the Island had to offer.

Kay McMahon 10-06-2015, 17:43

It is indeed a tribute to Ginnie that her influence still lives on strongly after all these years, and I certainly have a few tears in my eyes when I remember her. But we shouldn’t cry. We should smile because we had the privilege of knowing her.

It’ll be the anniversary of her death soon and we should raise a glass to her. I doubt if she’s in Hell, but if she is, she’ll be causing chaos and raising merry hell.

More likely she’s in Heaven and creating merry hell up there – party time! Hey, you, get offa my cloud!

RIP, Ginnie. There’s not many people who could have such an influence and be so fondly remembered by so many.

Grahame 19-06-2015, 17:07

Thank you Kay, Erica & Mercedes for the above comments/tributes to ‘The Old Girl’ (Also known lovingly by me as “She Who Must Be Obeyed”!! You are right Kay – the anniversary will be VERY soon now ….. on the 3rd July it will be the 5th anniversary. Many a tear will be flowing here in the DR on that day but doubtless a dew alcoholic salutes to The Old Girl will be consumed too (Thanks For The Memories Old Thing!!!).

Erica …….. was this at Newland Park? Did we ever get the chance to meet? I was Ginnie’s partner during her last 18 months there & WE moved to the DR together! YES, she did ’embrace’ her time here with me & it was documented in her first book “Quisquea – Mad Dogs & English Couple” (I have a few copies left if anyone wants to read it!)

If you feel like making contact – just send me an e-mail at Grahame@casabush.org.

Mercedes de Marchena 20-06-2015, 01:52

Grahame, I have a signed copy of the book! Enjoyed it tremendously and laughed out loud more than once. I think she had a copy of mine: “Such is Life in the Tropics”. Will have a drink in her name on the 3rd……

Erica Davis 22-06-2015, 06:35

Grahame, I would love to read Ginnie’s book but can’t locate a copy. Any advice please?

Tondra Bowers 05-09-2017, 23:31

I was just surfing DR1 today to see how things are prior to Hurricane Irma and keeping the people I met in the DR in my thoughts. I never dreamed I would come across news of Ginnie’s death. I was lucky to meet her on my first trip to the DR in her home, but we had a brief encounter. Grahame was sweet to transport me from the airport to my hotel and toted me around a few times. Grahame, if you are reading this, I trust you are doing better after a few years. I am also wondering how you are doing. I haven’t been on DR1 for a while and am reminded how things change. Hey BushBaby……I think of you and generosity more than you know. Much health and healing! I sure do miss the DR.

Kay McMahon 07-09-2017, 11:17

Hi Tondra,

Sorry you had to hear about Ginnie’s passing in this way. I never had the chance to meet her but we communicated frequently by email and she was always very supportive of BE. A sad loss indeed to many people.

I’ve not heard from Grahame recently – hope he’s doing well.

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