Calvin has a new friend at school. Last night they went to a movie, and today his friend went to baseball camp to be Calvin's catcher. What makes this friendship special is that Calvin and he are distantly related. Very distantly. Here's the deal: My aunt (mom's brother's wife) is a cousin of the kid's grandma. I don't even know if there is a technical term for that kind of relation. Tail of the shirttail maybe? Anyway, Calvin is kind of proud to hang out with his "cousin".
I think the reason Calvin enjoys this connection is because we don't have family in the immediate area. My dad and brother and his family are a hundred miles away, while my aunt and uncle and grandma are a bit closer at sixty miles away. The Hermit's family are all in Michigan and Ohio; one of our nephews is even an attorney in Ireland. I'd love to visit him some time! But there are a lot of families around here that have been here for a long time and have scores of relatives within a stone's throw; Calvin and Starflower's best friends up the road are an example. So finding a connection with someone in the area is probably important to them.
I grew up seeing my first cousins infrequently. They lived in Walla Walla, Washington, St. Augustine, Florida, and Newton, Massachusetts. I barely know them. I have a few second cousins I saw more frequently, but I am not that close to any of the family. So I can totally understand Calvin's enthusiasm at finding someone he is related to, however distantly. :)