Sad days and jolly days.

My husband's Uncle Arthur died last Wednesday and the funeral is tomorrow.
Yes, we are sad in that we will miss him, he was a regular Christmas guest the past 4 years and we did treat him as a surrogate grandpop, eally, but I refuse to go in for heavy mourning.
You see, he was 83 which is a good innings, really, and he wasn't massively ill ever so to be carried off by a massive stroke with little/no pain sounds reasonable to me. He was such an independant man that to be disabled would have been anathema. My goodness! he didn't want to ask for help if he could help it ever. Stubborn and self-willed, this was a man who had been through WW2 and the events in Palestine until 1947. He had been a scout messenger during the blitz, he knew what war was like...... and he could keep the stories going for hours
And hours
And hours.
I wish I'd made him write them down. Now who can tell me about the sand in the tent shifting because of the scorpions? Who can remind me that 60 years ago the woods at the foot of our road stretched over another 2 or 3 miles because there were no houses then between it and Woolton? Who can look at my little Princess and tell her that her eyes are just like her Grandma's when everyone who knew her grandma at that age is gone?
And everytime one of the older generation leaves us, shuffles off this mortal coil and enters the blessed peace of paradise, it means I shuffle that bit further up the queue of mortality.... soon, we'll be the older generation and the torch of living will have been passed on to another layer while we (Deo Volentus) sit and look back with hindsight and wisdom as befits our advanced status to hanker after a time of innocence long, long past. Do you remember when petrol only cost £1.50 a litre? You could buy a house for £300, 000 in those days, and there were plenty of Polish plumbers who did the work. I remember when the Brown depression struck we thought we'd never have it good again... and the days when you could go out in daylight alone and not be knifed. They were days of wine and roses......
Perhaps by then they won't have zimmer frames but automatic wheelchairs like the best robotic dreams, think and it will move. We might all be stored in a deep freeze and on our way to Alpha maximus because the Earth is in toxic shock after global warming......
Or perhaps not. Perhaps people will have realised that peace is best achieved by friendship and understanding, that community builds community and that we are all citizens of a beautiful planet. That global warming, myth or fantasy as it may be, is only part of the reason to take care of the Earth, and that we are definitely Human Beings not Human Doings. That life can be hard and subsistence living, but that humans can redeem it by their attitude, by their companionship and their eternal optimism. And that nothing matters more than family.
I have seen four dead bodies in my time, all of them old people. Death at their age is a release and a blessing. When the body and brain fails and all joy has gone, it's not bad. I don't fear dead bodies. They are amongst the most peaceful things I have seen on Earth. And tomorrow when we watch Uncle Arthur's coffin pass beyond the veil, I shall weep, a little, because of the music, but mostly I shall feel content that a good and grateful man has passed onto paradise. Bless him.


  1. What a great post Jo. I'm sure Uncle Arthur would have a appreciated it.

  2. Good post! I'll be thinking of you all tomorrow.

  3. Sorry to hear of your loss.

    Hope all went okay.



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