Thursday, March 15, 2007
What would you call someone who is closely related to two celebrities and who talks about it?
That’s what I am, at least for this post. Not because of the glory it will bring me (I am sure none is forthcoming) but for the pride I feel in having them as my niece and nephew.
First, Ali Ewoldt.
Ali plays Cosette in the re-staging of Les Miserables on Broadway! Yes, she’s the daughter of Fantine, played by Lea Salonga. She can sing up a storm—had been singing since she was a toddler.
Me? I can’t carry a tune, even if I keep trying. I love Broadway plays though (I have a collection of Broadway CDs, original soundtrack) and if I were in New York on opening night, I would have been invited to the family night and opening night. Hah!
See? We are related. In her veins run Ilocano blood and values. She is the daughter of my first cousin, formerly Leah Vergara Anolin.
Second, Alvin Patrimonio.
Anyone who knows his basketball in the Philippines knows Alvin. Four-time NBA Most Valuable Player.
He’s a giant at 6’3” and I’m a midget at 5’. I am not into sports (except walking and occasional swimming) and I hardly watch basketball games. But trust me, we are related. Alvin’s the son of my first cousin, formerly Ophelia Vergara.
There are things I know about Alvin that the world doesn’t–that’s the prize of being an aunt. He knows his manners and his values are well oiled.
At age 3, the family predicted he would be a great basketball player. He’d play with anything that’s round (fruits, toys, even a wad of crumpled paper) and make like he was shooting it.
The Vergaras are a closely-knit clan, meeting every single year (62 years now) for a clan reunion.
And we keep in touch all-year-round through a Vergara e-groups and a website, complete with a family tree, consisting of 6 generations! We know what each other is up to.
Ali and Alvin, although second cousins, have not met each other—not yet. Ali still has to visit the Philippines; we’re all hoping she will one day.
Okay, that's about it. My name dropping time is up. I will now go back to my ordinary self—and enjoy the amazing grace God pours upon ordinary lives.
(Photo below shows Alvin, with his tiny aunt [in orange], when he attended the launching of my book, "Gifts of Grace 2" -- where he upstaged me big time. Featured in one of the book chapters, Alvin was asked to pose with the guests for photos, non-stop. The queue for his signature was twice longer than the queue for the author's!)