Thursday, December 28, 2017

Warming up to Auld Lang Syne

While I'm still having difficulty prying Christmas from my own clenched fingers, I have to face up to the fact that there is another holiday rapidly drawing near: New Year's Eve. Yes, that's the reason I've got Auld Lang Syne in mind. Only I'm remembering it in the old fashioned sense of the season: a time to remember old acquaintances and bring them to mind for all of us. As we warm up to the new year, I'd like to revisit a few of our old "friends" from past posts and share some updates.

There have been a few interesting connections made this past year at A Family Tapestry. Of course, I'm always delighted when someone contacts me out of the blue, on account of a post I wrote months (or even years) ago. The Internet is a fascinating tool for worldwide connection, and while we understand its capabilities, it is always a surprise to be part of a reader's effort to reach out and actually touch that someone in that other part of the world. Though every post made for this blog is designed as cousin bait, I'm always surprised when someone does take the initiative to connect with me.

Since the translation of the old Scottish phrase "for auld lang syne" may roughly be translated as "for the sake of old times," it seems this should become an appropriate theme song for family historians. If the song's introductory question basically asks, "Is it right that old times be forgotten?" our answer, of course, is a resounding "No!" We're doing everything we can to insure that our family's treasured relationships of past decades and centuries will be preserved. Auld Lang Syne, in effect, becomes our theme song—not just for a jovial gathering on December 31, or the theme song we warble at the stroke of midnight, but a musical directive for every day of the year. We are the embodiment of that rhetorical question, providing its answer every day we delve into our research.

In the next few days, I'll take some time to revisit a few projects of the last year—and beyond—and share some news on what has happened since I first shared the story. It's always good to remember—and to bring those memories forward into the upcoming year.

Above: "Skating," chromolithographic print, circa 1885, by Montreal native Henry Sandham; courtesy United States Library of Congress via Wikipedia; in the public domain.

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