June 21, 2011

Modern family.

This post has been long time in the making. Namely all of last night as I kept dreaming about it. Wild dreams they were, also including the Frenchman, a long haired sexy stranger, and IKEA. Anyhow this is not about any of them, this is about my wonderful family, which I have shamefully neglected in this writing.

We are the Schwagers. Technically not even half of us – me included – is officially called Schwager, but we all share the same Schwager-esque characteristics, so no one really cares about the technicalities of a last name. You ask what characteristics I’m talking about? It’s hard to describe, one has to experience us to understand that we are just not a normal family.
One is the sheer size of us. They just don’t make families that big anymore these days. I tried to do a little family tree, so you can see the extend of my South African family and understand the connections better, but I got too dizzy and gave up.
Yesterday was Carmen’s and Nikki’s birthday. Nikki is my cousin, Carmen is Nikki’s cousin, which for the sake of ease makes her my cousin too. After already having a pre-birthday dinner with the extended family, whatever that may mean for ours, on Sunday; Nikki had asked me to come over for some bubbly last night.
So after yoga I rushed home, changed, put petrol in my car and arrived a little while later in Hout Bay with bottle and birthday card in my hand. I rang once, I rang twice and by now the dogs inside were going gaga, yet still wasn’t in. A few phone calls later the mystery is solved as everyone ended up at La Perla and unfortunately no one had told me. I was promised huge amounts of bubbles over the phone and so I drove all the way back.
La Perla, you must know, is something like an extended living room/kitchen for my family and so to no surprise, I walked into their bar area completely decked out with various cousins, aunt & uncle, nieces, nephews, enough drinks to feed an army, and a very shamefaced Nikki. Due to it being her birthday she was of course gracefully forgiven immediately for the faux pas of not telling me the venue change.
What followed was a beautiful evening of celebration with a family on best behaviour for a change (Oh ja, we all can do very different too...). The restaurant brought out beautiful little plates of prawns, risotto and lamb, and tiramisu birthday cake... Glasses were never empty....The birthday girls were smiling, the kids laughing... Cousins, sitting in a corner, giggling, sharing old stories, which I had to promise not to repeat in writing today. Don’t get excited, because as a birthday present to Carmen I decided I shall keep that promise.

It was a Schwager family night to remember. Good to remember for the next time, when we all scream and shout at each other again as we do ... just like any other normal family.

P.S. I just tried it again – the family tree thing. First online, then by hand. Really wanted to include a chart, but it’s just not working. I didn’t even know which side of the paper to start.

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