Despite a wardrobe stuffed with psychedelia, feather boas, impractical shoes and outrageous hats I can still cobble together something suitable for most occasions. Here's what I wore for Dad's funeral today.
1960s Pseudo-Victorian lace-up boots, £1 car boot sale
Ossie Clark (?) jacket - bought last year from Second to None. Last seen HERE
1950s kid leather gloves by Morley (borrowed from the Kinky stockroom)
Victorian bog oak mourning locket filled with a lock of hair, circa 1850 (part of a collection I inherited)
And, as part of the family tradition I carried my Great-Grandma's clutch bag.
Tucked away inside is a photograph of her carrying it on a stroll around her home city of Chester in the 1930s. The gorgeous woman on her left was my Grandma's oldest sister, Florence.
My Dad was, like me, an atheist so I chose a humanist ceremony. Searching the internet for an suitable reading I came across this quote from the Russian climber Anatoli Boukreev. As Dad's lifelong passion was mountaineering (after leaving the RAF he spent two years conquering The Alps) the words seemed wonderfully apt.
Mountains are not stadiums where I satisfy my ambition to achieve,
They are the cathedrals where I practise my religion...
I go to them as humans go to worship.
From their lofty summits I view my past, dream of the future and,
With an unusual acuity, I am allowed to experience the present moment....
My vision cleared, my strength renewed. In the mountains I celebrate creation.
On each journey I am reborn.
You might think I'm mad for sharing this. I'm not a believer in life after death, a fan of horror films or have the slightest interest in witchcraft, tarot cards or seances but ever since we've moved into our house strange things have happened with several visitors speaking of a presence (including my dad, who refused to sit in the dining room). Last night as I was brushing my teeth before bed a bony hand gripped my lower back and violently pushed me across the floor and into the sink. I went ice cold, my skin became a mass of goosebumps and I ran downstairs to Jon in tears and, if you know me then you know I'm not a crier.
I was scared to go back into the bathroom but obviously I had to. This morning I braced myself, turned the radio on and the first song I heard was :
I think it's a sign. My beloved grandma was diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2000 and died in 2009, my Mum died in 2010 and Dad became ill five months later. After fifteen long years the shadow illness has cast over my life has gone. That evil hand has released me from it's icy grip and yes, I really do feel like there are finally going to be good times.
See you soon.
See you soon.