Monday, September 25, 2006
On Friday night we went over to Papa Sy and Nana's for dinner before going to Erev Rosh Hashanah services. It was nice. All of your cousins were there. Little Noah is quite the cutie and can be quite the shreiker.
Papa Sy, in Papa Sy style, presented Mom, Aunt Abby and Uncle Andrew with a book that he wrote about his life. It is called, "My Cruise." People can even buy it on the Internet.
I scanned through it and of course looked for mention of you. In addition to these pages, the last photo in the book, actually the last page of the whole book, is of you.
Mom and I sat in a row in the sanctuary that was next to the plaque with your name. I said to Mom that it will be very emotional to have Jack and Joe's Bar Mitzvahs in the same sanctuary where we had your funeral, where your body lay in its casket.
We went to the cemetery yesterday. Jack and Joe were playing at Susan's with Alex and Simon. I took a blanket out of the back of the minivan and spread it out next to your headstone. Mom and I lay down on it and Mom fell asleep for a little bit. I just sat and thought. I don't remember what I was thinking about. It even rained a tiny bit but not enough to make us move. And we saw a baby deer.
There is someone who was recently buried very close to you. She has the name of an old Jewish lady. I forget what it was. She doesn't have a headstone yet, so I don't know how old she was. I will report back but I bet she was in her eighties or nineties.
We visited Grandma on the way out. Mown grass always collects on her headstone. I used the blanket to sweep it all away. We left shiny smooth stones on both of your headstones.
The bummer about Rosh Hashanah starting on shabbat is they didn't blow the shofar. Jack said that someone came to school last week and blew the shofar to the tune of "Hail to the Redskins." That is one of the coolest things I've ever heard of. Must have done something 'cause the Redskins won their first game of the season yesterday. The guy who owns the Redskins is Jewish and we just found out last week that the coach of the Redskins when I was growing up, George Allen, was married to a Jewish woman. Maybe Jack's saxophone playing will lead to shofar blowing... and Hail to the Redskins shofar blowing.
Tekiah Gedolah Touchdownah!
When I was sitting with Mom at services I was looking around and I saw all of these people sitting with their families and it looked very sweet. Kids had their heads on the shoulders of their moms and dads -- people were whispering in each others ears and holding hands -- everyone was just really close. The High Holidays are important just for that. I was trying to think of other times when you get to sit close like that. Maybe movies, but that's about it.
I was remembering how I got big enough to put my arm around Pop Pop Teddy when we were sitting next to each other at services and I really liked that a lot. I miss sitting with him and sitting with Grandma. Grandma used to take her shoes off during services to try and stay comfortable. She loved going to High Holiday services to see everyone she hadn't seen for a while. I used to give her grief for gossiping. Even though I was kinda joking, I was probably too hard on her. But she was okay.
I guess Pop Pop Teddy is sitting with Jeri now. I wonder if they still go to services at Churchill, which was my high school. They have services there because there are too many people to fit in the sanctuary at Har Shalom. That is where we had Grandma's funeral. I remember being fine through that whole service and then just completely falling apart at the end. But I fell apart because you were so sick and I was so scared. I must have put my head on Mom's shoulder, but the only thing I really remember is sitting there okay and then suddenly weeping uncontrollably.
I miss both of you uncontrollably. Happy New Year.