So, now I have honored Dave's wishes and distributed some of Dave's ashes to his friends. (I assume his AA sponsor really did this at the remembrance ceremony they held for Dave.)
I kept the rest in my luggage and flew it home. (To be honest, first I sprinkled some in the backyard of his house in Albuquerque. Because he did love that house, and Albuquerque, and because my suitcase wouldn't close. This is why we love cremains: so practical.)
As I said, I kept some for my garden, and I also kept some because I had a vague memory that at one time Mom instructed me what to do with Dave's body, should he die. (I don't remember what Dave was doing that prompted this.) Mom told me there was a spot in the family plot for Dave, because the plot was divided into two plots of three: Her mom, dad, and brother, and then her, her sister, and then one where Dave might go. I had sprinkled some of Mom's ashes in the plot where her body was meant to have been buried, so I thought I should do the same for Dave.
Only then did I realize I have nooooo memory of what cemetery the family plot is in. I also have no record of it in my files. I don't visit Mom's grave because very little of her is there; she's mostly in my garden.
"Try one of those Find a Grave web sites," you say. Nope. For that you need the name to match, and my family is full of divorced women, so who knows what name they are buried under.
I had one relative who never married, Aunt Dolores, and in a hunt for her middle name I found her death certificate, and then I found that the last line of the death certificate records where they should send the body. Sunset Cemetery. Whew.
(An aside: Sunset Cemetery has some bad Yelp reviews. Good thing I'm giving my body to science.)
So, I may take a day during Thanksgiving week and sprinkle some of Dave across the family plot, and then wait to put him in my garden when the ground isn't frozen.
For those who think I'm being disrespectful: a) always, and b) we have eight billion people on this planet now, and they all need real estate. At some point there will be a New York Catacombs, and the New York cemeteries will be dug up and the bones will be the foundation of the gift shop. Even today if you are in a crypt in New Orleans there comes an anniversary when your remains are pushed to the back and a fresh body goes in front.
Ashes to ashes, people. It's the way to go.
This is a very practical way to go about it. I for one am not a cemetery person, although to each her own. I would much rather be returned to the earth via ashes or planted as a tree. Glad that you have made this next step in the process of saying goodbye to Dave.
Posted by: Suzanne | November 21, 2022 at 12:09 PM
Suzanne - I think I read that a person only exists in the memories and lore of her family for three generations. There is something to be said for a cemetery plot and a hunk of granite, but both will be gone at some point. Makes you appreciate the census and the internet. Those are probably our two real cemeteries now.
Posted by: theQueen | November 23, 2022 at 07:28 AM