I’ve always said I would never leave Texas. But every time I travel to Kentucky I come back with the realization that that’s not true. I returned from my my Family Reunion last week, and I still find myself regretting I didn’t have more time there. The same feeling I have when I see Austin in my rear-view mirror.
My Dad’s family is really unusually large and unusually close. I count all 11 of my first cousins among my best friends and am close to my aunts and uncles. They all live in Texas and we see each other a lot, but it doesn’t end there. I also know my great aunts and uncles and many of my first-cousins-once-removed (Dad’s cousins), in addition to my second cousins (their kids).
They all live in Kentucky, and the two contingents meet up every two years for family reunions. The whole assembled family pushes 200 in number, and though I couldn’t tell you most of their names, I’m going to hazard to guess that I know more family members than your average guy. But the problem is we only get to see one another once every two years for the reunion. A lot of the Texas contingent of the family couldn’t help but wish that we saw each other more often.
Though I’ve lived in Texas my whole life, my roots in Kentucky run deep. It’s where both grandparents and my Dad was born before moving to Austin in the late 60s. So when I go back to Kentucky, I hear comments like “This is where Pop and Grandma got married,” or “That’s the house where your great-grandfather was born,” or even “That’s where your great-great-uncle Nick owned a bourbon distillery.” Truth.
After being in a place where your ancestors (absolutely no irony in the use of that word) lived and died, you feel hollow after leaving. It’s almost like that’s where you’re supposed to be.
Also I love bourbon and horse-racing. So maybe someday.