Wednesday, November 01, 2006

All Saints

The funeral for Dan’s uncle was today. The church was very warm, and since it was a Catholic service, we sat there in sweaty stuffiness for two hours. Talk about suffering for your faith! I’ve never been able to decipher the secret code Catholics use to know when to sit, when to stand, when to kneel, etc. But I’m slowly getting enough practice to at least fake it most of the time. There’s something comforting about the participatory nature of Catholic services, and the way everyone seems to be on the same page about what to do next. It’s a totally different vibe from the “sit still and listen” passivity of the Protestant culture I grew up in. Plus, Catholic churches are pretty. Always something to look at. And most of the music is good, too. I’m a sucker for minor chords.

Anyway, in spite of the lack of air conditioning (Come on—it’s Houston! We need a/c all year long!), it was still better than a day at the office.

The cops gave us a great escort to the cemetery, which was one I’d never been to, full of winding roads, little ponds and creative monuments. I had never seen such a diversity of statues—not just your run-of-the-mill angels, of which there were plenty, but also life-size bronze animals and marble secular statues of people reading or doing other things that they had loved in life. I think I’d like to go back to this cemetery just to look around. In New England, I like wandering the cemeteries to read the headstones and ponder. But at this place, I think it would be more like a museum tour. I would go for the art.

Anyway, I was surprised at how short the graveside service was. At my paternal grandmother’s funeral, almost exactly three years ago, it seemed we stood out there forever, with the cold winds blowing down off the New Mexico mesas while the priest read things over the coffin. Me and my female cousins had been pallbearers and we hadn’t expected to be so long outside. Consequently, we had left our coats in the cars and stood huddled together by the grave, arms linked together for what warmth we could share, while gusts of wind whipped at our skirts.

But today, it seemed Dan and his cousins had hardly gotten Uncle Jerry’s coffin into position, when it was over. We all lingered awhile, no one wanting to be the first to go. To me, the hardest part is getting in the car and driving away, leaving the loved one behind. But eventually everyone was ready, and we went back to the church for food and visiting. It was a pretty good time, in spite of the sad occasion, but I was glad when it was over and Dan and I came home. Dan changed clothes and went to his aunt’s house to hang out awhile longer with his family, and I checked my email and then went for a run. Since it was three o’clock on a weekday, I had the trail at Memorial Park almost all to myself, and it was wonderful!

In other recent news, I attended a 3.5 hour meeting on Monday, of which less than 30 minutes was new information for me. The meeting was called by our CIO and attended by both of my bosses, so there was no hope that I could sneak out or find a means of even mental escape through writing and doodling. By the end, I was sympathizing with animals that will gnaw off one of their own legs to escape a trap. If I had thought it would’ve helped, I think I might’ve given it a try.

And finally, in light of Dan having taken two days off this week because of his uncle’s funeral, it’s not looking good for him taking time off for us to go San Antonio next weekend. His boss has had a death in the family this week, and I’m in the middle of an office move, and it’s just not a good time for taking extra days off. And it’s probably just as well. A November marathon was a little ambitious, in light of my lingering distrust of my hip, and my “A” race coming up in January. I’ll sign up for the local 25K, though, which will be in a few weeks.

The weather is turning cooler tonight. They’re predicting highs in the sixties tomorrow and Friday. It’s about time. One of my neighbors has wind chimes, and it’s nice to listen to them, making music on the leading gusts of the cool front.

Must be the season of the witch.

Recent Workouts
Tuesday: 5.5 mile run
Wednesday: 6 mile run


spongey437 said...

Hi Bunnygirl,

For Nanowrimo, you can edit all you want. They dont actually read the manuscripts anyway so technically you could put down 50,000 words of junk and call it your masterpiece. They just have a program that counts the words to make sure there are 50,000 and that is it. And for the daily updates, people just enter the number of words they have so far into the site.

Example - currently there are a few people that claim to have written 100,000+ words in two days - my guess is they just have nothign better to do than put up lies on the web.

But last year actually gave all the winners that go to their site a free printed copy of their book, which I am kind of hoping they do again this year.

Not sure how mine is going to turn out. It is the sequel to my first book, but I feel like the outline is missing something in the middle somewhere, hopefully it will show itself once I get to actually writing that part.

How goes the training?

Leslie said...

What a pleasure it was to read this entry, in spite of its very sad news. You have such a lovely way with words.

I echo your sentiments on the Catholic church versus the "are we done yet?" Protestant services I attended as a child. Only once did my friend take me to her church and I was simply mesmerized.

Again, my condolences to Dan.