In The No 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith, Mama Romotswe talks about her father being late. She doesn’t say “the late” as we would just that he is late.
For some reason this appeals to me. There’s a feeling of immediacy about it, as if the person is still here, just popped out for a moment, will be back soon, is on their way back but running late.
Of course I know that’s not true, but when you lose someone, there’s a part of you that can’t quite believe that they haven’t simply gone next door and will be back in a moment. Logically you know that isn’t true, but emotionally it doesn’t work like that. In my current WIP one of the characters says “The dead never really leave. We just find different ways of living with them.”
This doesn’t have to be gloomy and miserable. A quote I have up in my office to remind me of that is “We do not remember days…we remember moments” Cesare Pavese.
So today on Posy’s birthday that’s what I’m going to do−remember the good times: Posy and company rehearsing “Genera’s Playtime” on our flat roof, the holiday in Jamaica in that run down hotel in Ocho Rios, giggling as we tried and failed to go to Midnight Mass−we’d had too much to drink, swimming naked in the pool at Half Moon Bay, eating hot cross buns, dripping with honey in bed and…and…the list is endless.
I’m smiling as I write. All I need now is a glass of bubbles.
Happy birthday Posy!