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So my night last night was very melancholy.
In the first place the weather has been classic England weather.  It took me by surprise when I walked out of my house yesterday and it smelled like, well, home.

Then I was in my room listening to music on the computer and reading, and looked up and saw that my picture screensaver  had kicked in, and it was showing pictures of my Uncle Norm, and things we had done together. He died last summer, and I was sucker-punched with how much I missed him.

It's so odd how some things can really catch you off guard. 

You're going along, and every thing seems to be ok.
You're coping.
Life has more things in the pro column than the con column.

And then you step outside and the smell takes your breath away.
Or the picture glimpsed out of the corner of your eye makes you cry.

And then I made the mistake of watching part one of Terry Pratchett's BBC program on living with Alzheimer's. It broke my heart.  It was like a real life Flowers for Algernon.  I really could see what a fun, intelligent, sardonic, perceptive man he was, and how so much of this was slowly being taken away, by a foe he can't beat.  Many of you know I've been reading through his books the last couple years ( I would love to own them all!!!!) and I've enjoyed them thoroughly.  It was heartbreaking to see this man, the age of my father, just a few years younger than my uncle Norm,  battle to be himself as his very self was ebbing away.

I had such love for him last night.  This brave, and yet scared man. It brought tears to my eyes.  The fitting end to a Melancholy day.
I wish I could have known him.

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I'm home now. 
It was good and rough.
Hard to say goodbye to someone I love, and rough watching ones I love hurt so badly.
It was really sad seeing my dad say goodbye to the last member of his family.  Worse yet, watching him realize that the good reunion that has been happening for the last few years won't go any further.  And the most awful was that it happened on my dad's 60th birthday.
I also realized that I didn't really grieve, I was more into making sure everyone else was ok.  It's really starting to hit me, and I'm really sad, plus I don't have any patience for the little things in life at the moment.

I did have some great times though.
My Aunt asked me to sing at the Memorial.  My uncle, Norm, loved Elton John, so I sang "Your song" (with some minor lyrical adjustments…namely cutting out stuff about being a potion maker at a traveling show) and it went really well.  It made my cousins cry….I almost didn't get through it myself.

I also got to hear so many stories about Norm, and realized that some of my tendencies are not weird but family traits.  Norm had a photographic memory, and had a great memory for people, names, and Useless facts.  He also rarely slept on a plane :)  -things that are also mine, so now I know part of him lives on in me, and my dad, and my siblings.

I also got to spend some time with Mary.  She is amazingly generous and open hearted.  I hope so much not to loose her now that Norm is gone.  I really love her, she gave me my uncle, and that was a gift I will always treasure.

The really fun part about all of this was getting to finally meet Susan and Duncan.  They are my other cousins that I had seen many pictures of, but never met.  Let me just say that they are classy.  I already knew Tom and Meredith, and thought they were amazing, and now got to meet the rest of the family, and I'm just as impressed.  They were gracious, caring, and watched out for their mum tremendously.  I'm proud to call them family.

Dad and I stayed with Norm and Mary's neighbors, Lenny and Cindy (and the not to be forgotten Baby, the dog).  They had a delightful Baby Grand piano, and I found that Lenny used to drum for Patsy Cline, and so we had a couple Jam sessions.  They were wonderful to us, and I am so glad Mary has such wonderful friends to care for her.

O.k. I think I've shared enough for now…I'll have to reserve the obnoxious Best Buy experience for another post.  Let me just wrap up with the thanks;
Kelly-you are remarkable with your generosity and support.  Thanks for being a true friend.-ps I started watching Gossip Girl on the recommendation of your blog…we'll see how I like it.-
Carmen-despite everything going on with you, you guys being willing to come and meet me so far away from your home with a keyboard.  It was above and beyond, and so gracious.
Amanda-checking up on me, making sure I was o.k., thank you, you made me feel like I hadn't been forgotten.

Everyone at work who worked extra, and covered for me not being there…thanks.

So here are two songs, the Elton John one, that I sang most of, and one by Lou Fellingham that I sang Sunday at church, in honor of my uncle.

01 Your Song 11 God Of Mercy (Prayer Song)

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