Monday, September 17, 2007

A Death in the Family

Barbara, my cousin Brian's wife, died last night unexpectedly, Margaret emailed to tell us. I didn't know her well at all, Brian always visited us when his ship was in Sydney and I remember him telling us about Barbara while he was wooing - he said she was smashing. I saw them both at Aunt Emily's funeral, and then when Norma and family spent that wonderful year in London, she and I drove up with our two little boys and Brian entertained us royally. I thought at the time what a wonderfully expansive personality he has, Naval men are particularly open and friendly and resourceful (methinks), and he was like a big blond pasha at the head of the table. Barbara much quieter, dry wit, beautiful grooming and intimidating housekeeping skills. It is particularly poignant that her first grand child is due in March. She must have been so thrilled with the news.

Isn't it strange how strong childhood ties are? Brian as the oldest cousin was without doubt the leader when we all lived in Yorkshire, then when he was sailing it was always a red-letter day when he came into port, and a couple of times we all went cruising together and he was just like another brother. He still sails and skis, that marvellous Rose robustness. I hope he continues. Precious little comfort we can give him at this distance.


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