Tuesday, August 24, 2010

You know that person in your family that has taken on geneological exploration in an attempt to establish your ancestral roots? Uncle Jack is that person in my family. The son of a sharecropping tobacco farmer, Uncle Jack eventually assumed a leadership position in the Department of Agriculture at the federal level. In their spare time, he and his wife "Aunt" Lottie (who didn't know her real name until her teenage years, and never went by it) have tracked down the Forlines' ancestry to the French Huguenots.

While visiting with them in the Raleigh-Durham area (and not, unfortunately, in southern France), Michelle and I were able to spend an evening with his older sister, my Great Aunt Christine, and her son Carl. Now Carl is 72 years old, so quick math will lead you to the truthful conclusion that Aunt Christine comes close to pre-dating the Huguenots. In fact, she was born during World War I, yes ONE (1918). But no one has told her she's old yet - she still wears high heals, hosts formal dinners, hops up-and-down the staircase in their house, and drives Carl around to deliver meals-on-wheels to the "old" folks in their neighborhood.

We enjoyed hearing about their lives and getting a tour of their museum/house and the fine antiquities displayed within.

Uncle Jack & Aunt Lottie took us on a rather fascinating field trip to see an art installation near their house. Although impressive during the day, it must also be seen at night. This multi-acre art installation is covered in thousands of reflectors. When approaching at night, car headlights bring the art to life, giving the illusion of a county carnival. Turn the headlights off (briefly) and watch the entire carnival disappear. Incredible! As an added treat, we ran into the artist on site. He's a young 92 years old.

The "Carnival"

Jack, Lottie, and the artist Vollis Simpson

Mr. Simpson's creations

1 comment:

  1. hope you guys are doing well. enjoy your time. i have posted some updates on our current time: http://jriggs.wordpress.com.