In May of 2004, my aunt, brother and I headed to Slovakia to visit some family. It seemed the perfect time. I was jobless after moving from Philly to get married and my brother, who was not yet married, was able to take time off to visit. We would meet family, share some laughs and head home.
Well, it was sort of like that. The family, anyway. First, was Kosice and Paul. He is my aunt's uncle, I think anyway, but WOW...Charlie and I almost fell to the ground. It was as if my dad, who had died in 1997, were standing before us. I guess there is something to be said for genetics.
So, then we met Fr. Peter, who works at the seminary in Kosice. He was "working" on his English and was to be our tour guide. Let's just say it's good that my aunt is fluent in Slovak.
Siroke, in the center of the country, was next. This is the home village of my dad's family. It was quite moving to meet some of his direct relatives and visit the cemetery where my aunt's grandparents and her elder sister are buried (yes, we have a thing about cemeteries, don't we?)