Together for the good stuff.
Imagine it is the day of your 80th birthday. Imagine also that even though you have a large family, circumstances have taken most of that family to Canada. This is the case for Guilhermina who I met the other day. When I met her, I was introduced as the photographer for a couple that is a friend of the family, saying the we were going to do a photoshoot nearby, but she had no idea of what was coming...
She was happy that her children were present on her day, they had come from the other side of the ocean, but it was clear that she could not expect the presence of everyone. Her grandchildren, her great-grandchildren, most of them are far, with their own lives, the trip is long and the tickets aren't cheap.
So imagine it again: Imagine it is the day of your 80th birthday. Imagine also that even though you have a large family, circunstamces have taken most of that family to Canada. And now imagine that all of them show up as a surprise without you even suspecting it!
Rivers of emotion and tears of happiness flowed through that small village near Fátima on that day. The surprise of seeing her grandchildren and great-granchildren coming up the street and all of them coming into her house together was too much to be held only in smiles and laughter.
There were kisses and hugs, flowers were given and presents exchanged, old photographs were reproduced and new games experimented. The younger ones got to know each other better, and the older ones exchanged stories, laughter and secrets. Coins were flipped to see who was going to get the beer, typical sweets made by grandma Guilhermina were eaten and they were mixed with other things that the family brought from other places. The young ones showed off their spelling skills by writing everyone's name even though they're not together all the time, and they gave some more hugs, tight ones, the kind that one cannot be indifferent to.
We made photographs of the parts of the family and of the entire group. The children with their mother, the grandchildren with their grandmother and the great-grandchildren with their great-grandmother.
It was a good day in my book.