and I will try very hard not to bore you with the morose details of my utterly depressing weekend trip, except to relate two occurrences:
Wednesday morning, as I was on my way out the door to drive to Salt Lake to attend Charlie's funeral, we received a message informing us that my cousin had taken his own life the night before. My heart goes out to his mother, who had already lost her only other son to suicide, and to his wife and children. I will continue to pray for their comfort and support.
Yesterday, as I was driving the 785 miles home from Salt Lake, my route took me through the crash site where Charlie was killed. Not half a mile after I had passed the spot, a deer ran across the road in front of me and the car in the opposing lane hit it, strewing glass and pieces of bumper across the road and killing the deer instantly. The family in the car were fine, but it rattled me pretty good, coming as it did not 30 seconds after I had passed the place where Charlie breathed his last. His mother said the crash broke every bone in his body. Needless to say, after I regained my composure, I drove 5 miles under the speed limit the rest of the way home.
I say this with deep respect and perfect sincerity. Thank God for music. There is nothing like Beethoven or They Might Be Giants to lift the spirit during trying times. Who could keep from smiling at a song about prosthetic foreheads? And I defy anyone not to be uplifted by the last movement of Beethoven's 9th symphony. I look forward to the time when I can meet the genius who composed that master work in spite of deafness. Maybe Charlie can introduce me when I get there.