Hello everyone! I have just finished the first week of my holiday and I am now having a rest, as it has been very eventful week! I managed to relax more on Monday after taking the evening service; I felt shattered after a busy week at work and found myself too exhausted to do my exercises!! Wednesday was a special day of closure, when Margaret my sister was laid to rest with Mum and Dad in the graveyard of St Peter’s Church Coniston Cold. Some of her friends, who had been unable to be present at her funeral last November were able to join us for the burial of her ashes and share in meal of remembrance for her life. The day was chosen as it would have been her 74th birthday. The weather was breezy but fine for the ceremony. Selwyn took me to view the graffiti in the church at the top of the steps to the organ he and Margaret had done when they were blowing the organ so it could be played; they began to blow as young teenagers aged 12 and 14 respectively. Selwyn’s graffiti was S.H.G. scrawled in various places! Margaret had neatly written; M. Goodacre ‘blowed’ here 1952-1956!
David read some poems by R.S. Thomas including a ‘Country Churchyard’ and ‘Empty Church’; apparently my sister had written reviews of some of his poems in her church magazine. The vicar read a passage from Revelations and said a few prayers, then Selwyn picked up the casket and we all processed out as he placed it in the grave, where more prayers were said. Both my daughters felt they had closure being present when Margaret was finally laid to rest.
They enjoyed meeting family members. David had placed Beth at the end with Marie (David’s daughter) and her 2 children, Annabel age 2 ½ and Rory age 8 ½ months. Beth was in her element as she loves to be near children, especially as she is not very mobile at present with her broken foot! Cathy on the other hand was grateful to be seated at the other end of the table as she had just returned from her work as a busy nanny a couple of days earlier. She was very pleased to be able to relax and chat with Jonathan and David and me. Cathy and David shared travelling experiences and Jonathan found it all entertaining; I was so glad he had decided to join us at the last minute.
I was sitting next to another Helen, who had taught in Kenya with Margaret, when she was 22 and Margaret was 26! She told me how the girls at the school had been fascinated by Margaret’s red hair and asked if they could catch the colour!! She described Margaret as very determined, especially on the occasion they had climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, when she went on intrepidly to the very top!
I found the whole experience of the burial of Margaret’s ashes and the meal of remembrance as much less upsetting than the funeral in November, when I could not stop crying. Also this time my daughters were able to support me and that was much better. I am very blessed with my family.
My beloved could not come, as he would be facing a journey the next day down south to my niece, Sarah’s wedding and certainly could not manage both.