What a really fantastic time Lisa and I have enjoyed, first spending eight days cruising across the Atlantic, then another eight touring around four states in north-eastern USA.
Yesterday was our last full day in the US and what better way to draw our adventure to a close than for a third get together with more members of Lisa’s family?
In a previous blog, you could have read about our November 7 visit to Great Aunt Nina and her son Anthony, followed the next day with a hotel brunch which also marked my birthday. That was when we met up with Lisa’s sister Gen, her husband Billy, and their three adult children Marie, Jamie and Pam, along with Pam’s close friend Scott.
Last night, having travelled to New Jersey, we met up with Lisa’s first cousin Joanna, who is also her godmother, Joanna’s son Anthony (yes, another one) and his wife Maryann. That makes Anthony my love’s first cousin once removed. I know that because I checked; they are not, as many suppose, second cousins.
The maternal side of my beloved’s family is pure Sicilian and so it was no surprise that the five of us enjoyed a wonderful meal at Il Giardinello Italian restaurant in the town of Toms Hill. The meal itself was delicious and more than plentiful as there were a number of dishes of which the quantity was so great that several packs were made up to take home.
However, as delightful as the meal was, it was not the highlight of the evening. That, of course, was the reunion of Lisa with her family members – and my pleasure in meeting them for the first time.
Cousin Anthony is proving to be an entrepreneur as, besides his permanent ‘day job’ he has set up and now runs a very successful local adult softball league. On top of that, he organises an eight week long non-residential summer camp for youngsters from the age of four to 15. Mum Joanna and wife Maryann also help out with the camp.
As anyone would suspect, when families get together much of the conversation is only of interest to them and is likely to appear boring to others, as such it has no place here. What is important, on the other hand, is the relationship between family members, their interests and family news such as weddings, births and new additions to the family through marriage – like me!
Above all, alongside Lisa’s delight in meeting up again with so many of her relatives, it is with more than a little pleasure that I have been welcomed into such a vital and lovely family.
Pictures: Top, Anthony and Maryann. Inset: Lisa and Joanna.