As I mentioned before, P brought back some fun wedding related stuff from KTM, but he also brought some interesting family related stuff–as in family stories and a family tree.
I guess life changes makes one think about your family and your ancestors, and it’s interesting to hear about the people who came before you. I had heard stories about P’s grandfather before, and some of his adventures as a young man traveling with his older brother, but I hadn’t heard about older generations of relatives. P brought back an interesting story about how one of his grandfather’s aunt’s was chosen from Kalingpong (Nepali community in Indian Darjeeling) by one of the ruling Ranas as a wife, and how his grandfather came from the same Nepali community in India to Kathmandu so that he could be her driver. While in KTM this time the family visited the old palace (which has since been turned into an orphanage) where his grandfather used to work for a period of time—but I promised P he could tell that story himself in an upcoming guest blog post some time.
It was also interesting to see the various strands of P’s family tree and how some relatives had multiple wives (polygamy not being so common to my Irish heritage), while others didn’t, and which branches stayed in Kalingpong and which moved to Kathmandu. I’m hoping to learn more when his family visits this summer. The last time they visited we learned that P’s grandparents had eleven children, but only three survived to adulthood and only two are still alive—his father is sixth born but first to make it out of childhood. I can’t imagine.
I need to ask more questions of my family too. On my mother side my grandfather emigrated from western Ireland in the late ’40s, and both of my grandmother’s parents are from Ireland as well. I’ve heard a lot of family stories about them, but I don’t really know that much about their parents or grandparents from back in Ireland (my great-great and great-great-great grandparents… hey if Obama can find them, why can’t I?) . On my dad side, I’ve only heard stories about my great-grandparents but no one before that. We are supposed to be mostly Irish through his side as well, but I’m not quite sure how many generations it goes back.
So I thought I’d share the family tree that P brought back with him. He started translating the different branches into English and filling in some stories about the various people so that I could understand. I thought it was a pretty neat memento to bring back.