I am now and have been sick for a few days with some kind of virus that has me feverish and without a voice. I am trying to take it easy and finding some retrospection in the events of the past week. It has been something else.
Flash's family arrived after a long day of traveling last Wednesday. We offered to do a burial at sea for him and they kindly took us up on our offer on Friday. We had thought there would only be perhaps a dozen people. However, it soon became apparent that we had to move it from the 40' Trojan onto the Eloquent, the usual charter boat Greig and I crew on. A last minute call to our regular Captain Jorgen had him johnny-on-the-spot to help us out.
Karen 1 and I had gone into the Granville Island market before we left to get some flowers to throw into the ocean. There were about 22 of us I think. I never really did a final head count but it was to be a most beautiful and blessed event.
Jorgen took us out into English Bay, in between Point Atkinson and Point Grey. Betty, Flash's Mum had asked me to take charge and I was honoured to do so. Not having officiated over a funeral, let alone a funeral for a friend, she was totally OK with me winging it. I had thought, well, we'll gather everyone around in a circle and perhaps we'll all say a few words if we choose to do so and then we'll dispose of his ashes.
We had started the "ceremony" and Greig and I had said a few words. I think someone else was about to say something when Greig spotted the whales off the port side of the boat.
In the five years that we have been out there we've never seen a pod of Orcas before. Clearly it was divine intervention on Flash's part. It was, after all, his funeral and since he was not one who liked to talk about himself, he was apparently uncomfortable with us talking about him now.
Out to the bow and toward the whales we went to watch. Jorgen pointed us toward them, albeit very slowly. There were a couple of other sailboats out there too. We were in awe and pretty speechless over it. It was a glorious day! And there were whales!
We watched them for a bit and then Greig took Flash's mum Betty, his brother Jeff and his wife Courtney back to the swim grid with Flash. I told Betty we had chosen a single yellow rose for friendship in the bouquet and she took that for a keepsake. Others to take some blooms from the bouquet to toss them out with Flash to say goodbye.
Karen 1 played "Gone in a Flash" for everyone. Alas my video of it is quite abysmal. It is simple and beautiful and very poignant. I hope to put a better video up of it at some point.
Everyone was so moved by all of this and the appearance of the whales. Flash was taken from us all so quickly and has left a great impact on all of us. We'll never forget him. There will never be another Dave 3. Any other Daves will be apportioned 4, 5 etc.
Exhausted and overwhelmed with the events of the day, we came home to a voice mail from Evil Mark, albeit a very scratchy and weak voiced, not unlike myself at this present moment. He was touching base and out of ICU. We popped into see him after dinner and were delighted to see how well he was doing. He's been having some pretty trippy dreams and apparently in one of them I had run off with one of the male nurses! (Gee I hope he was really hot wish I had been there for it!) Although still very banged up and considering all he has been through and yet to face, he is healing amazingly well. He's a scrappy bastard. Go Mark!