So, we came together today, to celebrate a life, from birth to beyond…
And we said good bye to that earthly part of Vi – or maybe Violet, Miss Round, or Mrs Barker, to you…
We chronicled her courtship, her work and her motherhood; transitioning on to Nanna, then again to Great Granny.
And today we all had our own memories, and smiled with recognition at the ones we shared about her, too, as we shared some of her 91 years’ long, life.
‘My’ Vi was feisty, fearless and sometimes scary. As a child I held her awe, watching as she blazed her own trail – teaching herself to play the guitar, going to night school and leading Keep Fit classes.
She was the mother of my best friend, so I received countless kindnesses from her and her husband George: spending endless Sundays in the back of the family car on trips to the country; or sitting at the dinner table, eating freshly buttered bloomer from a side plate, nestled next to a larger plate with a neat ham salad.
As time moved on, she mellowed more and whilst we had all grown up and left our parental homes, still we gravitated back to Vi’s living room – to laugh, chatter, drink tea and chomp on sausage sandwiches.
Vi would fix you with an eagle eye and speak her mind. So I remember treading on eggshells around her as a child and then turning the tables on her, by teasing her lovingly and remorselessly, as an adult, which she always took in good stead, with a knowing smile.
Along with that, her humour was as dry as a snapped winter twig, and her laughter loud – filling an entire room with its deep chuckles, surrounding you with its vibration, leaving you helpless to do anything other than guffaw along with her.
Her legacies are legion. For me I have the greatest gratitude of the gift of her daughter Susan – my friend since we were five years old. A friend who became kin, now the beating heart of her own growing family.
So Vi is part of the landscape of my life, held in a myriad of remembrances and smiles. She’s gone in one, 1 dimensional way, but here for ever in many more, held as she is, in so countless hearts – not just on our lips, as she was today…
So good bye Vi.
Give em hell in heaven, you 😉 xx