I am in New York City, half way through a fantastic family holiday with Bruce and Jay. We have been in the US for two and a half weeks. We started in Oakland, to go to the basketball and then a night in San Francisco before driving down to LA with a couple of stops on the way and then on to San Diego, then we flew to Vegas for a quick stop to fly over the Grand Canyon and then flew to New York City and have been here for three days.
We have been saving for and planning this trip for a fair while. In amongst the plan was for me to go and stay for five nights with June, my Mum’s closest Canadian Cousin. I wrote about the connection between Mum and June here. That is the next stage of the trip after we have had our 7 nights in New York. I will certainly be blogging about that, so watch this space.
The last blog I wrote, in September, I talked about two Cousins who had contacted me from seeing a blog post of Mum’s – that post you can read here. So, the most amazing thing just happened. Here, I sit in my hotel room blogging after returning from dinner with one of them – Peter Harp, his beautifully glowing pregnant wife Jesse and Peter’s brother Mac and his beautiful wife Elise. There the three of us and families sat talking about the similarities and differences between Australia and America and specific particularities about New York, we got along wonderfully, we ate beautiful very affordable Chinese food and then took some photos for posterity (plus June told me I had to) and then we stopped for Ice Cream, said our goodbyes and headed off our separate ways. Before we did, I shared with Peter and Mac how this is historical as it is the first meeting of the Australian contingent of Crouts from Henry Eden Crout from his first wife Marie Ogilvie and the Canadian contingent of Crouts from his second and lifelong partner Emily Jacobs. You can read about the Canadian connection here
The two photos that were taken with Jay were really white in the bottom half, like there was an unearthly presence …. Mum? any chance you were letting us know you were there???? I’m not so sure about that, but what I am sure about is that she would have been clapping her hands with glee. All that she wanted was for Marie and Grandad to be honoured and the best way this can be done in my mind is for everyone to know about them. I am making sure that they have their place in the Crout history, and I am having the fun of meeting some of the cousins along the way! I know Mum would have loved to meet them but she just ran out of time, so I’m making sure I do it for her.
Thanks for organising a great night Peter, it was a pleasure to meet you all. I look forward to being in touch with you all, and meeting you again someday, either when we come back to USA or one day if you come to Australia!
Family is a complicated, intriguing and wonderful thing and I remain so grateful that Mum’s final years were spent not only obsessing over family history, but actually writing it here for the benefit of us all, her enduring legacy.