We've arrived in London and are working through the jet lag so that we'll be ready and energized for the conference. We came a little early so that we would be rested and ready for 3 days and the 20,000 people they say are coming to this conference. We've never been to such a large conference, and I don't know any other small US based company who has tried actually purchasing a "stand" (booth) and running it with a smaller number of people (Ancestry and FamilySearch are here--but they have more people here than we do.) So we're not sure what we are actually in for. Thus we have a couple of extra days in England to work through the jet lag and go ancestor hunting.
The jet lag is supposed to be making me stay awake at night and then sleep late in the morning. In all my traveling in my 20s to Europe and the Middle East, I remember jet lag being a 1-2 day thing that made you really tired in the afternoons. But this morning I am wide awake, even though I haven't had much sleep and stayed up way too late last night. I'm excited about the conference, but the thing that's got me wide awake when I should be sleeping is the prospect of finding Trefusis farm. Not only is this the magical place that allowed my great-grandfather to trace his ancestry, it is the place where his ancestors lived--clear back to the 1620s. But so exciting is all of the other the prospects of what we could find there--the church where my great great great grandparents were married, the records that my great grandfather wrote back and forth to the vicar about in 1908, the church where they lived, the town they socialized in, the actual land that my ancestors walked in the 1600s. Unreal. There are no words to describe it.
And the most important part of what has my heart a flutter is what I'll be able to take back to the kids. They have begun to be invested in this line of our ancestry too because of our extraction project last year. But I'll be able to share with them actually being able to walk this place. The pictures and the videos that I can take back to the kids--and then hopefully to bring them here soon too. I just hope it is as amazing to them as it is to me. I think it will be. I may not get the reaction out of them that I am looking for. I'm sure they won't be as excited about it as I am. But they'll get it. It will resonate in them the same way it did in me when I was 16 and my parents took us to Neiderstoken, Switzerland where another line of our ancestry came from (Have I told you about that? I'll have to soon.)
I just wish my Grandfather was still alive. I have so much to thank him for. When he wrote that little book about his father, I'm sure he had no idea what he was building in my life. I am so thankful that he wrote that book tying me to my great grandfather. But I'm also so thankful that he gave it to me as a 10 year old child, so that it could work on me and invest me in this line of my ancestry all these years. Perhaps the kids won't appreciate it when I get to bring them to Trefusis Farm because they haven't known about it and wondered about it for 30 years. But 30 years from now, they will have wondered about things. And I hope they get to have a moment like this--on the cusp of my own Who Do You Think You Are moment.