My baby brother has left the UK and has arrived safely in Sweden. He is on a works related trip to meet with suppliers but will fit in some fun time as well. He ans my lovely SIL are going to have a tour of the Volvo factory ( bet SIL loves that) and a visit to the Abba museum ( baby bro will be beside himself)
It was fantastic to have them here and to catch up with old friends was great also. We all talked about how sad it is that we do not stay in close contact and how the months slide into years imperceptibly.
In my Grandparents time you did not stray far from home, there was usually ample employment within a few miles, and families and friends stayed close all their lives.
My Granny never left Norfolk, one of her brothers was in the Merchant Navy and was a wanderer for most of his life and only settled down when age tightened it's grip on him, the rest stayed close and I grew up within a wide family circle.
My mum had three siblings, both brothers were in the air force and went where they were posted, the sister stayed within 100 yards of home until she died. Mum lived in Norwich for a while but moved back to the village after a few years.
Now villages are becoming dormitories and as house prices rise young locals can not afford to stay and move out. In most households both partners work and free time is concentrated on the nucleus family group, with the occasional visit to both sets of parents.
Siblings grow apart, cousins are long forgotten and the years roll by, Christmas and birthday cards slowly dwindle away. Then there will be a wedding, a christening or a funeral and the clan gathers.
We attended Michael's Grandmothers funeral last week, it was a lovely day and during the late afternoon family were moving around and chatting, two cousins discovered that although they had not met for a few years they lived two streets apart and made plans for the weekend.
This is modern life, my family stayed in close touch for years then work scattered us, job commitments, children and the school calendar stepped in and it was all over. Granny died so there were no unplanned meetings at her home to keep us together. It is sad but inevitable, I spend my holidays in Wales with the grandchildren not in Norfolk with my siblings, they will be out and about across Briton visiting theirs.
I am tired and happy, my life is slowly getting back to normal, today I moved a small mountain of laundry and filled the freezer with "takeaway meals" for Francesca to have at work. I did a big blitz on upstairs and filled a box for the Charity Shop. I am off to bed, so it is