A little birdie told me.

A little birdie

once told me that showing up is

what counts most in life.

littlebirdie3

Clearly, I wasn’t the only one she told.

When the news was announced

that Oma would turn ninety,

birds from far afield flocked to Aruba.

To show up

for Oma

happyoma

Oma’s bevy showed up by the dozens,

from Curacao, Holland, New York, Trinidad, and Aruba.

 Some flew,

seagullsaruba

others came by boat,

birdsonboat

by bike,

bikearuba

by surf,

windsurf

and by ATV.

ATV1_n

Two ambitious little birdies  drove sand cars,

beachkar

still others climbed great heights to see the nonagenarian.

junieenith

Several waltzed their way over,

dance your way

and a few simply came on foot.niceliasayo

Whatever the transportation means,

all of us reveled in the joy of seeing Oma make her grand entrance into her ninth decade.

niceliasmarikajump

On this auspicious occasion, all of Aruba sat up to take notice.

arrivearuba

After all, ninety doesn’t happen every day.

ninety

Ninety is something to celebrate.

cheerstooma3

At every possible opportunity,

cheers to oma 2

in every way you can.

rockstars

Ninety is something to document,

to never forget.

carelpix

Without Oma,

none of these traveling revellers would even exist, at least not in this particular constellation.

These birds definitely would not be here without their mother.

siblings

And by proxy, these feathered friends wouldn’t have flown in to roost.

others

Of course, then none of these nestlings would be singing their sweet songs,

cousins4

without their grandmother bird.

cousins1

This thought makes us feel,

well,

sad.

cousins2

As everyone knows, building and maintaining family connections can be a delicate and careful process.

eliasdripcastle5

sometimes things can get prickly.

topofhoiberg

Communication can get difficult- what you’re  trying to say might not be understood;

pictionary 2

even if it is as obvious as Michael Jackson’s moon-walk to you.

pictionary michaeljackson

Sometimes there just doesn’t seem to be enough space on the proverbial rock for everyone to fit.

birdattackayo

and the urge to go away for a spell arises,

time to go aruba

to wander out and carve out your own space.

finding space

More often than not,  families can tug at each others nerves, each side digging their heels in the sand.

tug of war17772_n

If you keep pulling, you may just end up laughing at the absurdity of it all.

tugofwara6

Or bleeding.

ouch

Whatever happens, ultimately, with enough time and patience,  family always

threesibsbluewall4

picks you up,

aruba43

and holds you as though you were as imperative as the setting sun

juniesunsethand

Because you are.

nicraulayo

As contrite as it sounds, we often take each other for granted.

family

We forget that,  in whatever configuration a kindred flock takes,  to find ourselves flying in a family formation  is a rare and fragile blessing.

kariooma

Love

eliasraymundo

is

juniekar

thicker

nicomavonche

than

team5

water;

sibsplayinpool

and cuts across boundaries

eliassaida

of distance,


uncarobert

time,

unclenephews

and stone.

wendapaulonic

So no matter the ebb and flow of the tide, we keep building and shaping our connections

sibscastle

with each other,

team2

knowing that we evolve and grow,

team1

along with the sands of time.

sibsbluewall

Throughout it all, our family ties

greeters

keep us grounded.

aruba1

Happy


saidanicomayard

Birthday,

orchid

Oma.

queenforaday

Thank you for your ever welcoming and open door.

oma'swelcomingdoor

Looking back  on our time,

this birdie is happy everyone showed up.


littlebirdiedon't lookback






3 thoughts on “A little birdie told me.

  1. Lieve Ellen, Thanks for this fabulous and monumental document of the 90th birthday of Nilda Pereira-Davelaar. In Dutch we should say : “geweldig hoe je dit in elkaar gevogeld hebt” (Great that you birded this together). How can we print this?
    Love Enith & Carel

  2. Dear Ellen and family, thanks for this family epos. I forwarded it to my part of the family, in doing this another 10 sister, (achter-) neefjes en nichtjes are connected. Hope to continue this series with you in and around Amsterdam. We’ll see….

  3. Wow Ellen, thank you so much for this contribution! What a beautiful way to capture our wonderful time with Oma and each other!

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