Those creating funeral programs tend to be close to the center. They know precisely who will be there to say goodbye. Those on the periphery may be far less informed.
Families, especially large ones, splinter and sprawl as the generations unfold.
I have cousins dotted around the city, in different suburbs and neighborhoods. I have more who have moved away, returning along the miles only for private visits or rites of passage. I know who they are. Our parents know who they are. Our children may never play together. They might not even meet them nor know their names. Their grandchildren haven't a hope of joining up the dots in a genealogy.
The center holds. The circumference becomes increasingly more vague.
Thus it is that I could stare, wide-eyed with goosebumps, at this vision of my Grandad entering a chapel yesterday. I was there to mourn my great-auntie. We had a long, rich history together, quite literally, considering the hours that we spent together compiling our family tree. But her children - now grown and with children of their own - were rarely there during those sessions. Her grandchildren and I never crossed paths.
Therefore I'd never met her grandson, who looked so much like her brother - my Grandad - until the moment we all came together to say goodbye.
A family tree to consult would have helped enormously, as we all attempted to piece our relationships together at the wake.