I haven't yet processed a lot of what's been going on, but I have to say, Friday was very cathartic. I'm still completely exhausted, and emotionally, I'm kind of a limp little dishrag.
But I want to get some of these details down before they fade.
I'm so glad about the service.
The top picture was on the front of the program, and the second picture was on the back. I think they capture my dad's professional and whimsical sides.
Friday was lovely, it really was. So many people who loved him, who love us, came to share in our grief and our celebration of his life.
Our friend Jonathan hired a bagpiper to play out front at the beginning and end of the service. I don't know what all he played, but the song I heard on the way in was, "Michael, Row Your Boat Ashore." On exit, he played "Amazing Grace."
I don't like bagpipes except at funerals, where they are so mournful, so perfect.
The service itself was beautiful - very personal. It was in a church, but not churchy. One friend, who is Jewish, got up to speak, and said that she had a lot of stories to tell, but she'd decided to skip some, lest the cross fall down off the wall on top of her.
These are our people.
Our family friend Pat gave the most amazing eulogy. People keep telling me how perfect it was, and it was.
Several family friends and I were on the program to speak, and Tori sang Vissi d'Arte, which was spectacular. And then we invited others to share their memories. And people told wonderful stories - both happy and sad.
There were a number that I liked, but this one is just so my dad.
An old colleague who couldn't be at the service emailed a friend to read this memory:
He'd worked on the same project as my dad, but in Washington, while we were posted in Delhi. And with the time difference, he regularly called my dad for work during our dinner hour. Which annoyed my dad no end - a fact that he voiced regularly to this colleague.
So at some point, this man came to Delhi for meetings. And one night, at 2 am, he got a phone call from my dad. Being sound asleep, he awoke in a panic, surprised to hear my dad's voice on the phone.
"Hi! Are you asleep?"
"Yes, yes I am."
"That's good. I just wanted to make sure you were sleeping OK. See you in the morning!"
So very much my dad.