A Local Funeral

Anna and I attended a funeral and as I sat waiting for the service to begin, I wondered if it was a coincidence that the word funeral begins with the word fun. Just a thought.

The day began with getting ready; I took my Pierre Balmain suit out of the wardrobe. This was my favourite suit when I was performing wandering or table magic and I hadn't worn it since I gave up performing. Just before we left I remembered my reading glasses, which I needed to read the service programme. I dropped the glasses into the top pocket and was ready to go. When I patted the jacket to make sure the glasses weren't disturbing the line of the suit, I couldn't feel the glasses. What I had forgot was Anna had tailored into the jacket a chute so that any object dropped into the top pocket would slide down to the outside left pocket. It took ten minutest to distract the glasses from the cloth chute.

It was the funeral of a local character (William). His family knew it would crowd the church, so they had a marquee for the overflow of people attending the funeral and the marquee was full.

We learned more of this extraordinary and private man. His past was a revelation. One incident sticks in my mind, it involved a friend from his schooldays. William often stayed at his friends' house during holiday time and in later life his friend inherited a title from his father. As I mentioned above, William was a private person and wouldn't talk about his friend insisting he hadn't seen his friend for years. It turned out his best friend from school was none other than Lord Lucan.

William was a keen sailor, and the music selected had a nautical theme to it. At the end of the ceremony the music selected to play as the coffin left the church was "The Sailor's Hornpipe".  The pall bearers lifted the coffin up and they removed the trestles. There was not enough room to turn around, so they had to go forward then shuffle forward and back until they had turned around while The Sailor's Hornpipe was being played. If anyone is familiar with the music, they can imagine how funny the shuffling looked with the tune as a backdrop. If you do not know the music, the POPEYE theme begins with it and it resembles the CAPTAIN PUGWASH theme.

I found it funny and Anna had to nudge me because my shoulders were moving up and down too much.

I guess, fun can be an integral part of the funeral.

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