I remember years ago, back in 2009, when Keith’s grandfather died, being at his funeral. I had known him for about a decade. He was a good man. A decent man.
At the funeral they were projecting these old videos of him on to a concrete brick wall. The one scene that struck me most was of him on a rural Ontario winter road.
Back then you dressed up, no matter where you were going, so he looked sharp.
I sat there looking at this video of a then young man now gone and I thought, rather foolishly, what was his life for?
Sure he had a wife, a mistress, two children, grandchildren, but all those tiny, simple pleasures, those insignificant filmed moments are all that were left of him in motion; a man full of life and breath.
I’ll soon reach a time when my friends begin to die, maybe I’ll be the first to go! An old unversity friend of mine, Chris, passed away at the age of 31 in 2013. Eight years ago now. He had so much left to live.
I think of that Karen Blixen quote all the time: “Difficult times have helped me to understand better than before how infinitely rich and beautiful life is in every way, and that so many things that one goes worrying about are of no importance whatsoever.”
I remind myself often to live free and be happy with simple pleasures. Waking up in the morning, making the bed, going for a walk. Having a laugh with a work colleague. Going out for a nice dinner and some drinks after work.
They may seem insignificant, but they fill my heart, and when I lie down to take my final breath, if I am so lucky to be able to anticipate that moment, I believe those will be the memories that will carry me gently to the other side.
Cheesy I know.