There was that most pleasurable rainy ride from Stavanger shared in all of those raindrop photos—leading up to the best possible time in Kristiansand. My family here includes Tone, Simon, Oda and Erland. Tone is the daughter of my second-cousin, Gurine, whom I first met in 1985. I liked her so much; she and I agreed back then that if only we lived closer to each other we would become such good friends. We did write a few times and spent a nice but too-short time together in 2005. With the easier communication possibilities like Facebook available now I’m sure we would have managed a fine friendship.
But now there’s Gurine’s exceptional daughter Tone as family and friend. What make it all even better are her husband Simon and those charming grown children. Simon feels like a great comrade as well and I love the fact that Oda and Erland treat me like a familiar and somewhat interesting adult aunt/cousin and not some doddering distant relative who’s accidentally wandered onto the premises. If the world can just hang on until people like them (and my grandchildren of course) are ready to run things, we’ll be okay. These individuals are each involved in their own interesting lives, Tone and Simon are university and energy administrators, Oda is in marketing for an international corporation and Erland studies in a master’s program in IT.
Considering my Norwegian cousins along, with my Swedish, Minnesota and South Dakota cousins, wonderful folks and friends all, I realize how fortunate I am. I should send them all thank you cards for sharing their DNA with me. Since I’m so bad with those gracious kinds of gestures, please consider this your thank you. Here are a few first and most casual family and food photos before I start on the remarkable road trip to which I was treated yesterday.