I visited my family abroad this past fall. After not having been there for 20 years, we created a laundry list of memories. All of which I will cherish and some I have already shared. It is time for the next installment.
I spent a week with my Mother’s siblings all gathered together in one location. Their ages range from 68 to 84. My Uncle a retired dentist would be the first to rise and leave the house to gather fresh bread for breakfast and probably every newspaper printed in the town. He would return with at least eight different publications.
We would enjoy our breakfast while the television was on always set to a news channel. Their daily itinerary went something like this:
9 am: Hearty breakfast with the entire family, television on.
10 am: The youngsters would clean up the kitchen; the elders would retire to the family room each with a publication, television still on.
11:45 am: A few of the elders would go down for a nap.
12:45pm: Lunch, accompanied by a spirited recollection of the major headlines of each publication, television news on.
4:00 pm Tea time on the balcony, no television. Instead, each sibling would report a headline as though it was breaking news. Those paying attention would listen intently.
7:30 pm Multi course dinner with television on and discourse on all the days’ news.
By about day 2, I was bored with the news. I was on vacation, didn’t care what was going on in the world. However, I did not want to offend my Aunts and Uncles so I paid attention to one of the many news related television shows only to find that 2 gentlemen were actually holding up each of the 8 publications that were rotating through our family room. They were reading the news to the viewers. What a concept? Perhaps it was a service for those who may be homebound or maybe for the illiterate. I made the mistake of asking my Uncle why he bothered buying the papers since all of them watched this program in addition to reading the papers. He told me that was the only way they could all be entertained en mass. He also told me to keep my revelation to myself.
Basically, if it aint broke, don’t’ fix it. You have to love the crazy family. I wouldn’t have it any other way.