Tuesday 9 August 2011

WT - LA Cousin's Visit

Saturday Chriselda called and advised that since we were only 30-40 min up the road, they would collect us from our hotel to spend Sunday with them. It was hoped that Bernie would be able to join us and a tentative arrangement was made for us by Chriselda but this was dependant on Bernie's commitments.

Well what a wonderful day we had on Sunday. Chriselda and her son Connor collected us from our Hotel at 09:00hrs and the reunion just outside the Lobby was fantastic. We met Owen, Chriselda's husband and Connors father for the first time and I have to say Chriselda you have good taste. Unfortunately Bernie was unable to break free from her commitments to spend time with us but perhaps next time hey.

We spent the day talking and catching up on what has happened to the family over the last 30 odd years, some good times and some sad times, the passing of loved ones - My Aunt Rita first and then Uncle Jack Chriselda's Mom and Dad whom I recall were fantastic people, the passing of my Mom. Of course we also shared hardship stories (after all we all have them) and how we coped and recovered - Life is getting knocked down and living is getting back up. Chriselda's intestinal fortitude, determination and love for her family are inspirational I have the utmost admiration and respect for her and I am ever so grateful to Cousin Dion who stood by her like a brother when things were at their worst.

After a browse through old photo's it was off to the pool for Connor an exceptionally bright young man loves swimming and all sorts of physical activities - he excels at everything he puts his mind to and is an avid baseball fan. While Connor and his friends enjoyed a variety of in pool games I spent quite a bit of time with Owen who is a hard working, caring and loving husband and father, fairly quiet at first but he started to open up and share his thoughts and background with us. It felt as though we had known Owen for years and I personally have a great empathy toward him and his values - a really great guy.

Chriselda prepared a wonderful dinner and Ronnie agrees with me when I say that we felt really comfortable and at home, as though all those years had just washed away and as though we had seen each other just last week.  It was decided that we would all like to spend Monday together and do something fun. I have always wanted to visit Madame Tussauds and Ronnie has always wanted to see the Hollywood walk of fame with  the stars in the pavement so Chriselda offered to take us and Connor (unfortunately Owen had to work). It was very late when Chriselda ran us back to our hotel where we agreed to be ready by 09:00hrs Monday (to avoid the worst of the traffic).

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