Here is what RP is looking forward to, and IEG will write about hers after she returns home from the Twin Cities.
Growing up, Orofino was our vacation spot. Every summer we would load up the car, and drive to my mother's home town to visit Grandma West and Auntie Lila and Uncle Ted, Uncle Bob and Auntie Ronnie, Cousin Lura and Lyle, and her boys, Derrick and Mark, and Cousin John and his kids Paul, Matt and Summer.
Sometimes the Coomer cousins from Boise would be in Orofino as well. This was always fun, because they were around my age and it was fun having cousins to be with that were close to the same age.
Here are the Coomer cousins and myself.
Often the week in Orofino included playing the piano at Grandma West's house, going swimming at Zan's Beach, on the Clearwater River, enjoying lots of good food from the many gardens my relatives grew in the dark, rich volcanic soil, and one summer highlight was working at my Aunt and Uncles business, "West's Gun and Tackle Shop" for a few days.
The last time the cousins were all together.
I am looking forward to being with my West family as we gather in Orofino in a few weeks. It will be a joy to sit and visit with cousins face to face I haven't seen in decades, but have seen their face on Facebook. It will be nice to reminisce about Grandma West, and Uncle Ted, and Cousin John and Auntie Ronnie, and all the other people who have left us, and fondly remember, through our stories, the stories that will bring them to life during out brief time together, and realize once again that they were all a part in shaping who I am today.
Yes, it is the story telling I am most anticipating. Learning things I never knew. Hearing things again to remind me of memories long gone.
I also look forward to watching my mom return to her roots, and be surrounded by the family she loves, and the people who have always adored her. I look forward to her beaming all weekend long as she shares and listens to stories being told.
Stories are the creative conversion of life itself into a more powerful, clearer, more meaningful experience. They are the currency of human contact. ---Robert McKee
This quote sums up what I am thinking about for this reunion weekend. I want to gather as much currency as I can during this time. No, RP, not from the casinos, but from the interaction with my family, and the treasures I will gain by listening to their stories.
Okay, gaining some currency at the casinos wouldn't be that bad!!