Last week a most unexpected package arrived. It was from a delicious aunt in NZ , Auntie Stella. A lovely gift with some memorable photos. The photos were taken on December 29, 2013 when for a couple of hours about 90 family members gathered.....just to gather,to celebrate & reminisce,on all those years .It was a very energetic room,full of greetings,laughter,sharing & everyone talking at once.The venue overlooked a lake...a lovely setting. What a crowd!
My youngest brother Gerald was the master of ceremonies. It was kicked off with my eldest sister Frances invoking a blessing to welcome the clan. With great presence Gerald asked one representative from each family to summarize their lives in 5 minutes. Magic! we all listened as the biographies were shared & the distance of not seeing someone for 30 years temporarily vanished.
Here were the captive lovely faces,all our collective tribal stories;triumphs,hardships joys,kids,regrets,tragic outcomes,courage,determination,good luck,sadness,wisdom, prosperity & faith. It was a privilege to be present,but due to the time I didn't catch up with many.
Our middle brother Joseph "firmly nudged" his siblings ( 7 of us) into singing Monty Python's "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life", accompanied by another brother Allan on the guitar,with biggest brother Anthony harmonizing. A family member afterward shared that he had come into the venue overwhelmed with some burdens he was trying to process, He stated that when he heard such a fabulous rendition of that song he was moved out of the darkness & the brightness did come in.
Middle sister Patricia as usual did a superb job organizing & planning the occasion months in advance. Everything was double checked & in order. Patricia had bought her camera but was so busy she didn't have time to use it. However a wonderful cousin Bella arrived with her camera & starting taking photos,! She saved the "memory" day & did a great job marshal-ling the crowd,and making them laugh....thank you!
All my mother's brother's and sisters were present. What an effort!. They range in age from 64 years -87 years.. Can't you imagine them as cute kids?
,I know we all felt richer from the gathering. ..and ...then It was time to go. Some bounded down the stairs,others had help,some were carried & the rest walked down. So thanks for making such a rich family tapestry,for always showing up to make every event such a treat & for cheering everyone on. So many thanks to Auntie Stella for your generosity & because you shared the photos with me, I can now share them with the world!! It is a wonderful treat to revisit you all. Love Lizzie