Family Reunion 2016

The seven-day family gathering in Hatteras Island (The Outer Bank of North Carolina Beach) was filled with food, drinks, laughter, electronic devices, and a bit of drama. As usual, each family took turn to cook delicious dishes for 30 some people.

It was nice to spend to with the elder generation. Some are still in good health, but some had shown signs of weakness. Despite the difficulties, they had managed to come to each reunion. In contrast, our generation had all the opportunities and health, yet not many of us could put in the effort to attend the reunion.

The drinking group was still going strong. Despite having gout, I could not resist the temptation to drink. We killed four bottles of tequila and several bottles of wine. I did not touch any beer. My gout prevention medication was Naproxen, which also helped with the hangover. It’s like killing two birds with one stone. I am pretty sure my lung and kidney don’t appreciate it. I having been feeling a bit of a pain at the bottom of my feet. I am hoping not to get an attack, but it is still to early to tell. I have been drinking lots of tart cherry juice and getting back to my plant-based diet to help clearing out the uric acid. I did quite a bit of running in the morning, swimming in the pool and at the beach, as well as foot massage in the hot tub. At the end, I am still not sure if I want to put my body through this again even just for one week a year.

For the younger generation, Việt Xuân got lots of attention for his first reunion. His lovely smiles brought joy and laughter to lots of family members. Of all the kids, Việt Xuân was the only one not gluing himself to an electronic device. During the day, I took the kids out to the pool and the beach to get away from the iPads. I am proud to witness that Đạo and Đán had been able to swim in the deep side of the pool without a floating device. Unfortunately when they were not in the water, they glued themselves to the iPads. In our normal days, they could only get the use the iPad on the weekends. At vacation house, everyone else was on it and I wanted some quiet time for myself so I can relax, read, or work on my side project. I had mistakenly getting the beasts out. When they got tired from swimming and cranky from not napping, they whined and screamed when it was time to turn off the devices. There were a few humiliating on full display in front of everyone.

No one said anything, but I wanted to apologize for the kids’ behavior was well as my inability to prevent the embarrassment. I am working harder on getting them to behave better. If not, I will withdraw from the reunion to save us from humiliation.