Monday, July 21, 2008

I Survived Meeting the BIG Family

It wasn't nearly as bad as I was expecting. In fact, I rather enjoyed it. Last Saturday, I went to meet my boyfriend's extended family at their annual get-together. The day was long, but I'm very glad I went.

I used to think I had a social phobia, and I was a shy child, but over the years I've realized that I'm just not into crowds of people. Even dealing with my own family can be exhausting (it's not that I don't love them, but when they're all together (and drinking), it can be an overload). The Boy comes from a large extended family, probably twice the size of my own big family. I only remember a few names from Saturday... ten at most. Everyone was nice, the food was great, and the atmosphere was comfortable. I couldn't have asked for more.

The day started too early as I had to be in Salem by 8:00ish to meet Kevin for the trip up to the Hubbard Hop Festival. We went to the parade and had a nice time watching all of the cars and floats. The weather was perfect for a parade (trust me: I have parade experience). After that, we walked back to his aunt and uncle's for the family festivities which included a gift exchange and a dessert contest. One of his cousins took it upon herself to give me the standard grilling while we were eating lunch. Later, Kevin and I stole off to a bench swing under the shade of a tree where we could watch the dessert judging and talk slightly more privately.

While we were sitting there, another cousin of his wandered over. She is a Geocacher (woot!) (sorry), so we had lots in common from the start. In the course of our conversation, she told me she lived in the town where I knew my grandfather worked most of his life. When I mentioned that, she asked me where. I told her, and she could actually give his name without prompting. I was floored. dumbfounded. befuddled. The world keeps getting smaller, I tell ya!

By 4:00pm, both of us were sunburned and partied out. We left Hubbard and headed back to Salem for dinner. Yay for the Olive Garden! A fantastic dinner later, we were ready for naps. No time to sleep, though, as we sailed to the movie theater where Kevin had already purchased our tickets to see The Dark Knight. His brother and some friends joined us for the movie. Heath Ledger's performance stole the show, and his riveting portrayal of the Joker was truly haunting.

After the movie, it was time to go home for good. Kevin informed me as we were walking out of the theater that his mom had sent him a text message regarding my car. His father washed it for me. Stunned, I tried to question the motive... I couldn't get the words out. My car wasn't that dirty, but his kindness moved me. He'd even waited up for us to return--which allowed me to thank him in person. Wow!

Though the day was long, the experience was unforgettable. I'm told if I go back to another family gathering that I'm in. Hope that's not some sort of mafia reference, because I thought everyone I met was pretty cool.

1 comment:

MissKris said...

Ooooooh...I SO remember the first time I met Dear Hubby's family. Pretty unnerving, isn't it? Then a big family shindig...a wedding. And I mean BIG family!!! My mom-in-law had 13 brothers and sisters. Dear Hubby has something like 60 first cousins and countless cousins by cousins by cousins. I don't think I ever have remembered everyone's names, and I've been married to the man for 34 years, haha! Good grief...reading your blog is like reliving my youth, girl. This is weird.