Over memorial day weekend, we had a Bacon family reunion. I had no idea what to expect. I went to one 21 years ago and all I remember is some cousin-like boy following me around and trying to kiss me. I think. Anyway, Mike, Jackson and I took the trek up to Alameda to visit some family.
We arrive and had one heck of a time finding parking within the condo complex, but that's besides the point. Our cousin Marilyn, now in her 60's, has taken a lot of time over the years tracing back our lineage. It's neat-we have a lot of English royalty and heritage traced way back to 1200. We met at her place -a quaint, neat condo near the water.
Our current family is pretty fractured. My grandfather was an alcoholic and my grandmother and he got divorced when my dad was a kid. He came from a long line of leavers as well, so it only made sense he would do the same. He died in 2001 from alcohol poisoning. He had 4 siblings that I had yet to meet (unless they were at the reunion when I was 7).
At the reunion was my two uncles; a cousin and her family; my dad, step mom and brother; 2nd cousin Marilyn and Great Uncle Jack. Jack was the oldest of all the Bacon brothers (my grandfather's siblings). I had no idea that I had any other family living from that generation (and really, neither did my dad, which shows the fracture in the family). Jack and the siblings spent some time in Santa Cruz, which I had no idea. Jack actually worked at Horsnyder Pharmacy in the 30's to support the family when my great-grandfather left. As I read over the biography of Jack, I found out he and his family were baptized at a church in Santa Cruz in the early 50's. It was intriguing to me, so I asked Marilyn if she knew which church it was that they were baptized. She responds, "Oh, it was the First Presbyterian Church, the red brick church in Santa Cruz". I respond with an emphatic, "I work there!". This spurs a conversation about the church, the name change, why we don't call ourselves Presbyterian anymore. My uncle, who is maybe spiritual, says, "Coincidence? I think NOT!". I agreed with him, hoping he wasn't being sarcastic and me looking like I don't get the joke. It was so neat to know that we have heritage at the church that extends beyond our generation. Who knows if Jack is a Jesus follower or not but God has used this church in our family more than once now.
On another note, I found out that my great-grandfather was a musician in the silent movies. How cool is that? I have always wondered where my brother and my love for music came from, and only rings truer now the name "the artist formerly known as bacon" as the Bacon's were actually talented. Ha!