Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Are Family Gatherings Disappearing?

I've been feeling a bit nostalgic as of late in regards to my family. What I'm noticing is that my aunt and uncles are meeting at least once a year. They've built this tight knit bond throughout their lives and it's been great for them. What I'm also noticing is that their sons/daughters, including myself, have not been so keen to keep in contact with each other. I fear that once the "baby boomers" generation of my family will move on to the next life that there won't be anyone to take over the family gatherings.

On my mother's side, the family had built camps near a river where we would meet, for a week at a time, every summer. The week would be filled with fun and games but what I remember more vividly is the family "prison". The prison, which was at the center of all the camps, was a place where you could put family members for "misbehaving" (swearing, lost at a game, and other silliness..) or you could pay to have someone arrest them. To get out, someone also had to pay and the money raised was use to help pay for the food and activities. It was a pretty fun, and original, way to raise funds for the events.

These events stopped about 25 years ago as key people have either move other places or passed away.

On my father's side, there's a big family BBQ every year during the long weekend in August. This has been going on for as long as I remember and I wouldn't miss it for the world. While not as elaborate as what we had on my mother's side it is still great fun and a perfect opportunity to get in touch with those that you don't get to see as much.
The BBQ has been going strong for at least 40 years but I fear we're nearing the end of that event as well as most key people are reaching an age where their bodies are failing them.

The BBQ on my father's side, and the odd gatherings during Christmas time, is all that's left. Realistically, the children of the family are not setup to take over those events.

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