ADF Day 3: Mad Dash

January 26, 2013 at 11:11 pm

So I didn’t walk today,  but I think I deserve a pass on that…

As previously mentioned, this morning was my grandfather’s funeral.  It was held in Wisconsin in a small farming community north of the Dells.  This meant the past 24 hours have basically been one full-tilt dash up there and back, a total of about 15 hours in the car.

To be fair, it wasn’t as bad as I expected.  We all got along fairly well on the way up (‘we all’ representing my two sisters, my father and me), which in and of itself is pretty miraculous.  I wasn’t very optimistic on that front.  I left work early yesterday to meet them at Dad’s house in the suburbs, and we set out from there, arriving in Janesville, Wisconsin around 11:30 p.m. to overnight with some of my Mom’s cousins.

It was barely a night’s worth of sleep, though, because we had to be up at 5:30 a.m. to get ready and leave in time to make the second leg of the journey.  Then it was a crazy hour of juggling showers and trading around hair dryers, then crawling into cars with our bags to drive through the frozen wee hours.  Breakfast was a piece of banana bread, Sudafed and some coffee we picked up at a gast station.

Wisconsin is wicked cold this time of year, and there was snow there.  It struck me what a foreign concept that had already become, given St. Louis’ recent spate of early Spring.  I wasn’t sorry for St. Louis.

We arrived in whatever town it was (I still don’t know for sure — Hillsboro?) around 9:00, in time to take our rightful places as Closest Family Sort Of as the mourners came in for the viewing.  It was a nice opportunity to see pictures of my step-grandfather as a child.  Apparently he resembled Harry Potter, with big round glasses and kind of a spunky 1930s way about him.  As a young man he resembled Bob Hope.  However, the face I remember was evident in pictures dating as far back as 1965.  He aged to a certain point relatively early, and then he apparently sort of stopped for the next 60 years.  Aside from having lost a lot of weight recently, he still looked the same.

Anyway, it was a nice funeral.  Grandpa Ed was a Merchant Seaman, so there was a military sendoff in addition to the Catholic rites.  We got to meet his brother’s family, the only true blood family he had.   We got to take part in a Catholic service, which was interesting to watch.  The Military sendoff took place in the cemetery, and though it was a slow process that would have been easier to appreciate had we not been freezing our toes in the snow the whole while, I did think it was a suitable send-off for my grandfather.

We couldn’t stay afterward; Anna needed to get back by 7 if possible, and would have gone alone had I not gone with her.  It was good talking time for us, which was important.  On the way out, the kind Catholic ladies made us make up luncheon plates for ourselves, so there was a haphazard lunch of processed-food casseroles and marshmallowey desserts in the car on the way back.  It wasn’t bad; just wasn’t quite what either of us would have chosen, I think. 😉

Regardless, the drive got us back around 6:30.  I put Mom’s car away in the garage and then drove back into the city to meet Chris for dinner.  By the time all of that was done, I was too exhausted to do anything.  It’s been a long, emotional day, and I just want to go to bed now.

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ADF Day 2: Curse you, Pesto! ADF Day 4: Had a bad day, takin’ one down…

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