Sure does make a difference in how one is thinking when one pronounces that phrase: what most pops into the mind is relatives that are second, third, fourth cousins - or even further removed.
In my family’s case it is simply distance as a numerical measure of how far apart one person is from another. We are three siblings, each with two sons (and as on my husband’s side there were also only boys, we sisters-in-law stick together!). One of the nephews is married – yeah. Our current living locations:
California, USA, 4
Alaska, USA, 1
Washington, USA 1
Alabama, USA, 2
Chattanooga, Tennessee, 1
Switzerland, Europe, 1
Peru, South America 1
Niger, Africa, 1
So it’s pretty cool that we were all together in California last September and fun that in the past few weeks the one in Peru and the one in the state of Washington, USA found themselves at the same time in the same city in South America. Currently the one living in Switzerland and the two living in Alabama have just met one of the ones living in California for lunch in Columbia, South Carolina.
One could deduce that we’re a wandering family, but that, for all that, we are family and no distance is too great when it comes to getting together!
The phrase “I’d travel to the ends of the earth for you” certainly is true in our case: I love it!