The little captain and I arrived in sunny San Diego the day before Grandmarm’s memorial service. Hannah and I toted our tots; our brothers traveled solo. We all crashed at Grandfather’s house. Eucalyptus, dry pine needles, jasmine, lemon and orange trees—these scents hint at decades of family visits. As per tradition, we stayed up late playing a word game that I think Simon won and I lost resoundingly. The tots roughhoused with their uncles. We saw my mom’s brothers and their families, too. Uncle Mitch loaned us his enviable 15-passenger van, and at some point all of us remarked on how we wanted it (like the one we had back in the day)! We gathered for a short time, for a sad reason, but I think Grandmarm would have been delighted to see warmth and love of a family brought together in her memory.
I was talking to my mom on the phone shortly after Grandmarm’s passing, when the subject of the obituary came up. I immediately offered to do it, and was surprised at some of the things I learned. Like that she played violin in the Hollywood Bowl when she was nine. And was a founding member of the Poway church where we celebrated her memorial service. She performed with the Paradise Symphony in retirement. And now she is free from the physical ailments of her body, able to make beautiful music once again.
“Happy from now on are those who die in the Lord! So it is, says the Spirit, for they rest from their labors.”
~Book of Common Prayer