Summer is the time for Family Reunions. My family, on my fathers side, gets together every two years and share a day together. This year is the first year that I was of the older generation. There are no longer any aunts and uncles, just cousins and more cousins. When do we cease being cousins? Are we still related if we are 6 times removed from the founding grandparents? You bet we are!!! We are family.
Yesterday, I met with my many cousins in a little community that my grandparents homesteaded in. The church we meet in is actually on the land that Grandad settled in 1901. One hundred and ten years brought back a lot of people to honor this special couple. The old homestead is much different now, it is overgrown with trees and this Spring, a wildfire sweeping through the country burned the big Dutch barn that had stood for almost 100 years. True, the old barn was not much too look at but it was packed full of memories. the loft was a haven for 22 grandchildren to play in through the years. When the weather was cold and snow was on the ground, we spent our time there swinging on the rope in the rafters and hiding ourselves in the hay bundles that granddad had stored in the big loft. The old two story house still stands as does the large chicken house and grainerys.
Yesterday, we reminesced over all of the good times and caught up on the news of today. I missed those that could not come. The meal was catered by a local family that fed us too much and we enjoyed the tales and songs of cowboy poet, J.W. Beeson. He kept up laughing and almost crying with his talents. It was a good time.
As the Rancher and I headed for home later in the evening, we stopped in a nearby community to get a cold drink for the road home. This is the same town I lived in as a child. By chance, there were two men inside who were also having a drink for the road. These were former classmates who I have not visited with in many, many years. It was by accident they were there as one of them was traveling through town, but the other one lived there. It just goes to show that even though many years have gone by and we are now older, or shall I say, just plain OLD, we still recognized each other after all these years. It was a good day for me.