Recently I was able to reconnect with a member of my extended family - he would be my mother's cousin but is a contemporary of mine since there was a twenty year difference in age between my grandmother and her sister, his mother. Making the connection has been a real pleasure as we've been emailing back and forth with information and stories about our family connections.
Because of the fact that his mother and my grandmother, although sisters, were really of different generations, this cousin has more information about the ancestors than I do. After all, my great-grandparents were his grandparents, who died before any of us knew them, but he was able to hear first-hand stories and see more photos than I so his memories are much clearer and stronger than mine. I'm gleaning lots of great ancestral information and trying to start the process of getting it on paper. Some day, if I ever get the office I want to work in here at home, I'm going to spend time on Ancestry.com to leave lots of information behind for my children to have. I find learning about my ancestors eye-opening and sometimes humbling. For instance, this connection involves a great, great grandmother and great, great, great grandmother who died in the Johnstown flood, while the children all survived with their father and the youngest would become my great-grandmother. Now I want to travel to Johnstown to explore the museum there and connect with those ancestors, imagining the hardships they endured and the paths they followed to get to upstate New York where one day they would start a family that would end up on the eastern end of Long Island. I find it all fascinating.
The best thing about our modern technology is the ability to reconnect with people who we've lost track of over the years. What a great tool!