I got to Kansas City without incident. I played Gameboy and read the Jimmy Carter Palestine book for three hours while waiting for my sister.

We got the rental from a super duper discount car rental…this would give her an added adventure on return. The drive took about two and a half hours. I was grateful for the time to chew the fat with my sister. It was also fun to see a new landscape even if it was Missouri.

We arrived at the funeral home at about 5 o’clock. It was vintage funeral home with a light pink interior.

Most of my cousins I have not seen in 25 year. It was odd, but I still recognized them all. We are a rotund group…less so than in the past. We can now be divided into to groups the fat and the stapled. I am part of the former group. By the way, I think Missouri is my homeland…they are all shaped like me.

It was a bit awkward at first. Nobody knew quite what to say. But after a while we all started chatting. It was fun discovering what people had done with their lives and where they lived.

I was a bit apprehensive about the funeral service. I am not sure what I was expecting (snakes), but it was a very dignified service. I even felt hopeful by the end. I have been in a crisis of faith of late. And while this service did not resolve that, I did feel something for the first time in a long time….hope.

After the service and more chatting it was about 8 o’clock…9 by my bio-clock. So we went out in search of food. My parents honed in on their gastric beacon, a Chinese Buffet. It was by far the worst Chinese food I have had in years. But I was starving and I shoveled it in.

We went back to the hotel. It was nice by Missouri standards. It was clean and it had a nice lobby. After a quick call to Jenn, I went to the pool to watch my nephew swim and talk with my dad and sister. My grandmother was very poor, but my dad was dreading the reading of the will because his siblings were circling like vultures.

I tried to go to sleep, but I cannot sleep without Jenn in the bed. I am getting old.

Next morning I went to the lobby for breakfast with my immediate family. After one cup of coffee, my dad announced that he was going to breakfast with my cousins. My cousins are cops, and they went to the local cop hangout. I was not invited. So my dad got to spend some time with his “true” sons.

The burial was in a town 3 hours away. I drove with my mother and nephew. I gave her the full Ethan update…she had no clue. She cried. But she needed to know.

The burial was in a nice cemetery but it was freezing cold. I was a pawl bearer. My feet hurt from wearing dress shoes. Everyone shared their favorite memories of my Grandmother and then the service concluded. We all stood around the grave for 2 and a half hour after the service. We finally decided to go to a restaurant. The only place in town was a bowling alley…lol…but it worked. I got to talk with my cousin Scarlett, she is part of the staple group.

After driving home for three more hours, I hit the hay.

The next morning we drove back to the airport. It was raining, so I barely made my flight. Two planes later, I was home again.

I am glad I went.

By Ben Posted in Life

3 comments on “DOA

  1. Good for you, going alone to any family thing is hard. It’s especially hard when you feel like a stranger. I’m also glad you have hope; it’s an endangered species.

  2. I find it interesting that hope was restored even in the midst of a difficult situation. Isn’t that how God likes to work in our lives? I didn’t know that I would find hope in the midst of suffering depression. But that’s what happened…it sure would be nice if God would use different tactics to restore hope. 🙂

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