I am the youngest of 50 cousins with the ages spanning 20 years. Many are gone. That comes with being the youngest. Outliving everyone comes with a price.
When I was young we all lived close. We saw each other frequently and got together for parties and picnics. It was a close family with a lot of shared fun.
As we got older, our worlds got smaller as cousins married, moved and had families of their own. I no longer saw many of my cousins, even those I was close to.
We still saw each other at weddings and celebrations.
Now we only see each other at funerals. My brother and I will go but we will be lucky if we see ten of the remaining cousins.
Some have health issues. Some have mobility and transportation issues. Some have already passed. Cousins are almost extinct in our family.
I remember the days of growing up when families were tight and close. Everyone watched out for everyone’s kids (and yelled at them when necessary). No one threatened to sue anyone even if they fell on their pavement. Absolutely no one threatened violence.
People are transient these days often living far from their roots. I don’t know if cousins bond as they used to. Soccer teams don’t make up for that family feeling.
Every family has their share of characters. Some were funny. Some were kid-oriented. Some were cooks extraordinaire. Some were party people and some were all about the booze.
The one who died was one of my favorites. He was a straight up guy. Lots of fun with no funny stuff (if you know what I mean).
He will be missed.