"let your boat of life be light, packed with only
what you need - a homely home and simple pleasures, someone to love and someone to love you,
enough to eat and enough to wear
and a little more than enough to drink:
for thirst is a dangerous thing"

Friday, 9 September 2011

a tale to share

I have a little story to share.  A tale (I like that name).  I was not going to share it but I took a walk at lunchtime and thought a bit and have now decided that it is a story to share.  We need to share more.  My children sometimes think I share too much but this is how I operate.  Wow, quite a lot of "share and sharings" in the first paragraph.  

So here is my little tale:-

After work yesterday I headed up to Forres (I already confessed to that) to meet up with Wendy and Lynne.   My friendship with both of them has strengthen since Nicky died.  Nicky had that way of getting people together and it is quite amazing that since her death we now have a very strong bond with friends that before were friends but not very close friends.  We are now a tight group and have helped each other through the grief process, we help each other when needed and keep in touch regularly.  Our decision to go to Forres was one of convenience and we do it from time to time when we haven't seen each other for longer than usual, a quick drink and chat and home for supper.

Yesterday evening we had just started chatting and I mentioned that Andrew (Nicky's son) had arrived in Cape Town this morning for a break from his stint on one of those super yachts in the Mediterranean.  Within 20 minutes of mentioning it, Andrew appeared (not too strange, Forres is one of his favourite places).  Big hugs and kisses for all three of us.  What was so special and the reason for this post is that Andrew sat down with us finished his beer (and another) while we drank wine and cider (and ordered another).

He told us tales of his life at sea, what they do and what they eat, the new friendships he has formed, the places he has visited.  He told us funny stories and even shared a love story (or two).  He is looking so well and tanned and gorgeous.  In his time with us word was obviously out of his arrival in town, his phone buzzed, his back was patted.   He politely answered a couple of calls but was very brief.  Friends started arriving, we tried encouraging him to leave us and join up with his friends but he was content to sit with us and chat.

I felt that Andrew was with the three of us because he wanted to be.  He is always polite but now confident enough to have excused himself if he wanted to join his friends.  He wanted to chat to us because, I am sure, he feels the connection to his mom.  We see Chantal (Nicky's daughter) regularly and when we are together we talk lots about Nicky and keep her alive in our lives.  However, boys are different and besides the fact that Andrew is out of the country it is seldom you get to have close intimate chats with them.

It was getting late and time for us to head home.  We said our goodbyes and left.  Andrew joined his ever growing group of friends.  Half of me wanted to go back in and listen to more of his stories and wait for Nic to arrive (he was on his way) but I thought it better to leave.  I got to my car and sat quietly for awhile.  I was overwhelmed with a sense of loss and sadness. The fact that Lynne, Wendy and I were so privileged to spend time with this wonderful young man while his lovely mother and our dear friend was missing out on it all.  The fact that we are alive and have our children and are watching them grow to adulthood seemed so unfair. 

Then before I could get too morose I starting thinking of good things.  Of the amazing woman that Nicky was and how excited she would have been to have Andrew home and hear his stories.  I could almost visualise her hanging onto his every word and asking him to repeat stories.  Her camera would have been out and his return would be well documented.  She would have ordered bottles of champagne and buckets of beer and been her normal happy and busy self totally delighted to have Andrew home.

I reminded myself of the incredible ability that Nicky had of keeping people together, even now that she is not with us.  I also reminded myself of a little saying that I have been using a lot lately and passing it on to others, because it is so true (no use passing on stuff and not taking heed of it yourself):-

And then when I got into bed last, I was lying there for ages thinking about stuff and had a chat in my head to Nicky.  I told her how much we all missed her today (and everyday) and how handsome Andrew looked and that his hair was now short (and very blonde from the sun). I told how confident he is and how wise he has become and like her, how important his friends are to him.  And as I waffled on and on in my head I said to myself  "Shut up Jennifer. Get to sleep. Nicky knows everything that goes on and she is definitely proud".  She looks so proud, she looks so happy!!!

Tarts warming pies
Andrew's 21st - 2006

Now on writing this and thinking about mothers being proud, a song that Nic and Andrew sing so well together came into my mind -

and you will probably need the lyrics to go with it, for it to make sense.

Maybe Andrew and Nic will sing this for us before he leaves:-

Na Jesu atwanekwa tayesu falala he.
Na Jesu atwanekwa tayesu falala he.
Tayesu falala he, falala he.
Tayesu falala he, falala he.
Na Jesu atwanekwa tayesu falala he.
Na Jesu atwanekwa tayesu falala he.
Tayesu falala he, falala he.
Tayesu falala he, falala he.
Kwaziwai? Kwaziwai?
Makasimba, ere?
Ndakasimba kana makasimbawo.
Ndakasimba, ndakasimba. Ndakasimba kana makasimbawo.

You raise you head, you beat the sun
But your boys they lie so close to you
'Till you dare get up and wake the two
Oh Elias, I see you there at work in the day time
Do you think you could answer all the questions in the world
In just one word - I think you could

if you die will I get word that you're gone
will I hear it in passing conversation
or will I stop short and fall to the ground
distance is short when your hand carries what your eye found
hold my hand just one more time
to see if you're really going to meet me
hold my hand just one more time
to see if you're really going to meet me

Honest and Manuel, well, you know
they're at school now Given the chance that
their father's never seen
To see what's beyond section 17
And in ten years when you look back at your boys
Well you know they've grown way taller than the tallest
Sugar cane in the field


I see your wife she stands stooped over by the fire outside
and I see your boys and when they look up
You know I think they got their mother's eyes
'cause she looks so proud
she looks so happy
she looks so proud
she looks so happy


1 comment:

  1. What a beautifully written post, it brought tears to my eyes.