Easily the biggest story of 2019 was Annie taking a DNA test, simply to find out some more about her ancestory, only to discover two half-sisters and a half-brother in New York.
That paragraph is a very long story made short and it was a personal highlight of my year to simply watch events unfold, day by day, as the original biological link was discovered and tentative approaches were made from opposite sides of the Atlantic.
To transition from an only child whose father was unknown and mother vanished to the centre of a large and gregarious Irish-American community would test the emotional mettle of any of us and I’m very proud of the way that Annie took each step carefully, respectful of other’s feelings.
To be welcomed with open arms by the USA relatives was an act of random kindness that speaks volumes for the quality of the new people we are now meeting.
Today we met with Christie at Manchester Airport, who will be staying with us over the New Year and hellping us celebrate Annie’s 50th birthday on 31st December.
To say that my wife has had the best Christmas and birthday present ever would be an understatement and I’m looking forward to getting to know Christie better over the next few days and the wider family over the years ahead.
Having spoken about my own family visiting on Boxing Day, this next turn of events identifies just what an amazing few days we are having here at The Barrow home.