Challenges, ceremonies and celebrations.

Blogpost May 8th

It’s been a weird time lately. News of people we know and love being challenged by one thing or another is a theme that keeps repeating – over and over. A dear friend of ours who lives in Los Angeles, has welcomed into her lovely home, a close friend of hers who’s been told she has only nine weeks left to live. On the face of it it’s a heart-breaking, intense and very stressful situation but, our friend is an extraordinary human being. When she found out about the situation she talked to the family involved who were obviously distressed and offered her home in place of the “Home” they were contemplating for those final days. She essentially gave them the gift of a sanctuary, an alternative place for their loved one to die, in peace and relative comfort, surrounded by those she loves. It means that a desperate situation has been transformed into an, essentially, more bearable one because of her huge generosity of spirit. It gives me hope. It’s a fact of life, as I’ve mentioned before, that none of us “get out of this world alive” – to quote the late great Hank Williams.

Talking of the late and great, April 28th would have been Katherine Crowe’s 40th birthday. To acknowledge that fact and to celebrate her inspiring life and daft, irreverent sense of humour a few of us got together at Groudle Glen Beach, a place she loved. There were sweets, chocolates, cakes and champagne and a whole load of pink and purple balloons which we set free into the fierce wind that prevailed. It was awesome. We laughed and reminisced and expressed gratitude for the inspiring connections we all had and continue to have with her. Our thanks to Hayley Parker for setting it all up and for being so brilliantly organised and generous. There are many reasons Kath kept you so close. Thank you.
Balloons for Kath
Last Friday afternoon Bob and I joined many others to pay our last respects to a delightful, bright, humble and passionate man: Tony Knowles. The ceremony to celebrate his life was a deeply moving and elevating experience. love, pride and awe at the courage, fortitude, vulnerability and sheer beauty of his amazing family and close friends flowed in abundance. To be reminded so poignantly that life is a fragile, remarkable and an extraordinary privilege, is a phenomenal gift. I am so grateful. We are so blessed.

Later that same day we gathered for a surprise 60th birthday celebration for a friend we see all too seldom these days. The party was set at Noa’s Bake House in Douglas, a fabulous place to party for sure. With champagne (once again) in hand, balloons bobbing on flimsy string scattered around tables along with cards and presents; we waited. At the appointed hour the birthday boy, his gorgeous wife and two beautiful daughters walked in through the half-open doors – his daughters had arranged the entire event btw – and as we whooped and hollered our excitement at seeing him, he did no more than walk straight out again! oops! Turns out he had absolutely no idea and thought they’d all stumbled into someone elses celebration! Once it was explained that it was in fact his party he came back in utter amazement. A delighted grin slowly spread over his face as he recognised family and friends all around … it was a joy to see. To enhance proceedings further our musical entertainment for the evening was provided by his favourite band, none other than Lava El Elafante fronted by our gorgeous friend Christy DeHaven. We danced and laughed, laughed and danced and laughed some more. Hurrah for life!
P1390793Dawn still dapper at 83!Birthday bot and surprise guest :-) xLava Elefante
Other celebrations this past week have been my youngest brother Colin’s 25th wedding anniversary. He and his fabulous wife Rachel are a total inspiration and for the first time since having their brilliant four sons, and not ever having had a Honeymoon, they’ve gone on holiday … alone to Cuba! Their excitement has been infectious. We couldn’t be happier for them or more proud of the people they’ve blossomed into and the family they’ve created together. They are amazing! Congratulations Colin and Rachel! Their third son Connor was born the same date of their wedding anniversary May 5th, 17 years ago – hurrah and happy birthday Connor!

And … my sister Diane’s fist born, Benjamin, celebrated 22 years of existence on May 7th! What a week!

Bob and I are preparing for our next trip – Australia/New Zealand/Los Angeles – leaving the island next Wednesday evening May 13th. Yes we are incredibly fortunate and totally appreciate that fact. All is well all shall be well. Next week’s Blogpost will mostly be coming from Perth.
Boy racer :-) xx
As a final farewell this week I share with you another video/song and hope it brings you some joy. The song I’ve chosen is a wonderful Wendy Waldman tune made popular by Tuck and Patti in 1988 when they recorded a version on their first album together: “Tears of Joy”. My rendition was recorded as part of the RegaLove” album which was released on vinyl and CD in 2005. The footage is from a lovely walk through Ballaugh Curraghs with my parents and Bob last week, after a delicious lunch at our new favourite cafe The Guard House at Jurby.

Till next time dear reader. Thanks as always for dropping by – you matter to me!

Love, light, peace and joy!

Christine x

PS: In between all this life affirming stuff there has been writing, chanting, playing and a mad scramble to pull some teaching material together … Winter Break is coming soon!

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