The leaves on the Norway maple are yellow once more. My dry stone wall is again in partial collapse from all the footballs we kicked against it … this time on the other side of where the goal posts used to be. The weather is wet and dreary now; it was fine and warm then. There aren’t so many pheasants about this year.
Sean’s anniversary mass was held in the local church last night. The congregation was large – the local community, family, our friends and Sean’s. Our Dublin next-door neighbour, Aileen, whom we hadn’t seen in 13 years, and her daughter, Olivia. Some people had travelled a long way to be there.
At the end the choir sang ‘Come Back and See Me’, with guitar, fiddle and mandolin – a surprise to Pauline and me. They had met several times to practise it, unknown to us. It sounded great, and it was a wonderful gesture of caring. Tears were shed. Sean would have been proud, I think.
There was a large crowd of people in our house afterwards – many of the same ones that helped and supported us a year ago. We had a few drinks, and talked till 3 or so. No singing, unusually, but there will be many other nights for that. We released Chinese lanterns at the front of the house, but they soon foundered in the rain.
There are still some visitors about, and we don’t expect things to return to normal till after Sean’s actual anniversary, on Monday. It has been a strange year – heartbreaking, but with major compensations, including the love of warmth of many, many great people. We have hopes and dreams for the next year, which we will do our best to turn to reality. Sean will still be remembered and loved a year from now, and for a long time after that.
He deserves to be. He was a wonderful person.