Wednesday, October 1, 2014


There will be no suppers in the fields tonight, methinks.
The rain started pounding on the roof while I was at my desk at work yesterday afternoon, and when Alison and I stepped outside after locking up, it was a gorgeous warm dark evening, glistening with wet pools and shiny pavement.
She had a sheaf of papers an inch thick after printing off the photos taken on her cruise, and we went over to our favourite café to have supper and look through them.

My sister Karen is on the far right next to her husband, daughter, son, daughter-in-law and four grandchildren.  Thanks for the pic, Michelle!
I arrived home to unlit windows and a message on the phone from Scott to tell me he was staying in Calgary one more night. After shucking my clothes and putting on some pyjamas, I watched the tail end of Coronation Street and then turned off the TV and read the Engene family history book till midnight. To think of how many grandparents, great-grandparents, great-great grandparents we all have, back to infinity! And how many of them were cousins who married each other! Well ... people didn't travel and move around then like we do now. My ancestors on Grandpa Emil's side were farmers in Norway and most people they knew were neighbours and family in their own vicinity.

I've read this particular book before, but still found things I'd forgotten or maybe missed the first time around. There was a cousin — a distant cousin — not that distant though — let me see, actually he would only have been my second cousin — my grandfather's first cousin — who at age 24 was dropped off at home (he still lived with his parents) after a party so that he could drive his girlfriend home. His car was known for being a pain in the ass to start; it had to be jacked up in the rear. Anyway in the morning his dad noticed he wasn't home and looked in the garage to see if his car was there. He found his son's body near one of the car's fenders, the car jacked up, and the body of the girlfriend in the front seat. It appeared the car had been started but perhaps the garage door had blown shut while he was fixing a flat tire, and carbon monoxide had killed them both. The headlights were still on.

At any rate, a family tragedy for sure.

There are no Engenes left. Not the last name, anyway. The great-great grandparents who came to North America had 11 children, about half of whom were boys, but it's worked out that some didn't marry and have children to carry on the family name.

One family trait that is mentioned many times in the book, via people's written memories of the Engenes, is their kindness.