January 14, 2008

Ashes

Last night when I couldn't sleep I decided to scatter the rest of my dad's ashes in the San Francisco Bay. There are two reasons I think this is a good idea. Half of my dad's ashes are buried with his mom, Nana Pat, in the Newcastle cemetery where he wanted to be. The other half wouldn't fit in the urn (he was a big guy) and are still inside the the box on the top shelf of the closet in Obo's room (our big boy). If he knew they were in there, he'd probably not go in that room again. Or maybe he's peeked.

I need to do something with the ashes before we move to The Woods because I certainly can't scatter them there. My dad had never seen Massachusetts, I don't think. He loved San Francisco, though. Once, when he visited me he went into the city for the day, while I worked, and hung out in a sushi restaurant where they were gambling illegally and smoking cuban cigars upstairs (well, this is what he told me, but he could have made it up). You had to know the secret code or something to get in there, but before my dad left, they'd given it to him. That's how it was with him. He had a knack for finding the seediest places to hang out, and he always had the secret code on his way out the door.

If I scatter his ashes in the bay, he'll be in one of his favorite places, instead of my closet. He was a traveler, so that seems right. Also, I can ask my brother and sister if they want to come down for the scattering, and it might be the last time I see them, but at least I'll get to say goodbye. I might keep a bit of his ashes with me, though. He couldn't begrudge me that.

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