Thursday, June 29, 2023

I Still Hate Goodbyes

I am a couple of hours removed from having watched the livestream of my Aunt's funeral.

It took place in Ireland and lots of my relatives were there to say goodbye.

One of the nicest parts of the service was they had a table near my aunt and they brought up a bunch of souvenirs that reminded them of my aunt. I think they called them 'gifts of remembrance'. Anyway, they brought up some 7-Up because that is her favourite drink, a packet of Werther's Originals (her favourite sweets), her mobile phone because she would call everyone many times a day on it, her radio and other things.

I smiled at the part when they introduced the Werther's Originals because, if you recall, one of the things I mentioned last week - after my aunt passed away - was how she introduced me to the fudge sweets from supermarkets and how I always think of her whenever I am compelled to purchase packets when I do my Asda shops. 

To use an analogy - the fudge in see-through wrapping may not be in the same ballpark as Werther's Originals, but I'd argue that they both play their respective sports in the same city!

Another thing that made me happy was hearing the stories about how Aunty Nancy enjoyed taking members of her family to Dublin Zoo.

I am happy to say that she did indeed take me on a trip there on one of my visits to the Emerald Isle. I even remember her buying that game of Monkeys in a Barrel for me on that day.

I have spent the past few days remembering those trips to Ireland and hers to visit us and one thing stood out more than anything else.

I really hated to say goodbye to my aunt. I would get so used to her being around and then the lack of her presence after our farewells really struck me. On one occasion, I cried at school (and blamed being upset on failed hay fever tablets!) and then there was the last time she ever stayed here.

After waving my aunt and cousin off, I came back upstairs and wrote a post titled I Hate Goodbyes. In it, I wrote about, well - the title speaks for itself doesn't it? Someone, or something, was looking down on me that day because - shortly after I published that post - my phone rang to tell me that my relatives were both coming back here because their flight had been cancelled due to volcanic ash from the eruption of a volcano in Iceland.

That flight cancellation gave me a couple more days with my aunt and cousin. I looked at it as a blessing back then, but it's even more of a blessing now knowing that it gave my aunt and mum some extra days together for what turned out to be the final time.

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