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Saturday, January 12, 2008

Family

I've had a very busy two days. Yesterday I went to visit a very good friend who is in a nursing home on Long Island. Unfortunately, we had rain, a lot of rain. At times it was raining so hard I could barely see the car in front of me. It made me realize why a lot of states have made it a law that lights should be on when using windshield wipers.

After my visit I stayed overnight in a hotel. When I got there I saw they were hosting a convention and expected a loud night. It wasn't too bad though, and I did manage to get some sleep. Unfortunately, I woke with a start at one point and checked the time without wearing my glasses and thought it was later than it really was. About a half hour later I saw the right time and went back to sleep.

In the morning I then drove all the way out on the Island (Greenport) for a memorial Mass for my cousin who died last week. She had seven children and about 15 grandchildren. Her sister had six children and 13 grandchildren. There was quite a crowd. After Mass we went back to her house and fortunately, the weather was great and we were not all cooped inside the house.

We went through old photos which brought back good memories and a lot of questions, "Who is that man?", "Where was this taken?", "Do you remember her?" I found a page from the NEW YORK TIMES dated October 10, 1892. No one knows why this was saved, maybe it was the first paper my grandparents saw when they came to this country, no one knows.

I saw people I haven't seen in 30 or so years, of course, I didn't recognize most of them. I've learned a little trick about that. I just listen to the conversations and sooner or later a name will be mentioned and then it comes to me and I can join in the conversation. I was even able to contribute some of the family history and now I'll be included in my cousin's son's history of the family.

It's a shame that families often only see each other at weddings and funerals, but I guess that's inevitable since we are all scattered around the country. Times have changed. At one point my parents and my aunt and uncle had apartments in the same house and we cousins were able to play and know each other. We all even went to the same school.

My cousin and I have decided to keep in touch and get together in the Spring, when the threat of snow is over

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