I saw some of my relatives today. I hadn't seen my cousins for two years and my grandma for one year. It's a bizarre experience knowing that you are related to someone but not really knowing anything about them. It was really nice to see them but... I came away feeling like I am really missing out on some important stuff - some formation and experiences that only really come from regular contact and bonding that can't really happen when you only see someone every two years and don't communicate inbetween times.
On the other hand - there is a connection that two people have when they share grandparents that no one else can really share. It's not as tangible as other relationships - it can't be pinned on shared experiences or common ideas. Instead it's knowing that we have the same nose and lips, that the creativeness, although expresed differently, comes from the same place and that our parents grew up being fed radishes just the way we are whenever we go to visit.
Blood really does seem to be thicker than water... who would have thought?! I certainly wouldn't want to have to drink blood everyday when i'm thirsty for friendhsip though so praise God that water is so palatable!