I remember days spent rocking to and fro on a boat with no particular place to go, just waiting for the next race, sandwich in hand which is somehow filled with sand, though none is in sight. The massive grin as I almost fall in, and a look of disappointment as he realises I’m not completely soaked to my skin.
I remember nights spent under electric lights, rolling bowls down an artificial green, and seeing him clap and cheer if I got anywhere near.
I remember piles and piles of meat being grilled, Ivor looking perfectly chilled as the barbecue flamed around his ears, always calm and happy to be cooking, ribs and burgers and sausages and steak, always burnt a few by ‘mistake’ which just happened to find their way to the dog.
I remember him smiling.
I remember singing with him in the car, on our way to do something somewhere, voices raised high, without a care for the tune, or pitch, and even the lyrics were mostly substituted with anything we came up with at the time. Belting Les Mis together for the 42nd time that trip because we had forgotten to take any other CD’s.
I remember how proud he looked when he showed me the first Potato he took home from the new allotment, trying to justify the days of work digging and toiling, plowing and boiling in a summer heat that couldn’t seem to keep him inside, for the sake of more courgettes than you could shake a stick at.
I remember crying, and him telling me it was okay to feel this way, that it just means we cared, and not to be ashamed to let the tears fall.
I remember watching him sit in the garden, Toby at his feet, content to just watch the world go by, only the occasional fly to bother him. He just sat, a small smirk on his face, happy with the pace of the world as it was, the afternoon sun just starting to sink. I wish I could remember what he said as I joined him.
I remember him as he was, as he will always be in my mind and my heart.
A poem I’ve written (and still editing) for my Step-Dad’s funeral next week. Pretty depressing, but I felt like I wanted to get this out now, rather than bottling it up.