For once I'm writing my post a week early. By the time you read this I'll be along a lake in Santee, SC with Mike, Tina, and Ryan at Tina's parents' house. Ron and Debbie are such great hosts, I know I'll have a wonderful time.
This Saturday, as I write this, will be a Celebration of Life for Calvin. Kelly and Katrin are flying in from Berlin and also riding along with Mike to the lake house, as Ron and Debbie call it. Calvin's niece is flying in from Rhode Island today. My children and their families will arrive Friday and Saturday morning.
All the grandchildren are taking part. Eleni and Josh are reading two of Calvin's favorite passages from the Bible, Lauren is singing "Amazing Grace," Gavin is reading the opening scene of "Macbeth." In fact, he claims to have it memorized and will rock the three witches. I have no doubt. Ryan is playing "La Vie en Rose" on his trumpet. He'd learned Louis Armstrong's version for Calvin and played it for him a couple years ago on one of our trips to Mike's house. Calvin had been so touched Ryan had taken the initiative and time to memorize the song. His niece, Nancy, will share his favorite passages from "Romeo and Juliet" and "Julius Caesar." There will be an open mic time for sharing of memories. It'll be a relaxed service, one Calvin would have enjoyed.
One thing about cremation is that you can plan your service to fit everyone's schedule. Mozilla/Firefox had Kelly scheduled for three big trips of two weeks each to introduce and teach new products he's developed for them. So he's had two weeks in Portland and a week back home in Berlin. Two weeks in San Francisco with a return flight to Berlin, followed by two weeks in Boston and, of course back home to Berlin. He and I decided he needed a bit of time out of the airplane, so we scheduled Calvin's service for June 30th.
Knowing how hard the service will be for me, Mike decided he'd whisk me away to South Carolina for the week of the 4th--and Kelly and Katrin, too. He says he can have us there in five hours.
But at WHAT speed?
I have been known to freak out while he's flying on asphalt. When I screech "Michael!" from the back seat, he calmly replies with "Close your eyes, Mom." I've always felt that was polite speak for "close your mouth." I'm no dummy. I listen...even as my palms bear the imprint of my fingernails.
The laptop and charger will be packed. I need to do some editing while I sit on the dock. Writing happens everywhere, doesn't it?
At the end of July, I'm flying to Paris to spread some of Calvin's ashes in front of the apartment building he lived in his year over there. Kelly is flying to meet me so we can do it together. That was one of Calvin's last requests. "Sprinkle some of me in front of 21 rue Galande."
I'm hoping all of this will bring some closure. Sleeping lately has been hard. I can't seem to turn off my mind. I'm a woman who deeply misses her other half. And I suppose that's as it should be. Life goes on; memories remain.
HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!
*** Imagine the tears of shock and delight when I saw the gorgeous vase of red, yellow, and pink roses at Calvin's service from the Roses of Prose. I was so deeply touched. Thank you.