In the evening, Viv, David and I went off to Willaston to watch an amateur dramatic production of "Gaslight", a famous Victorian drama. The old film of it was one of my mother's favourites, but I hadn't seen it since I was old enough to follow it. It was a good production, with believable acting.
This morning, Matthew went off to school but Chris did not: his term finished yesterday. David and Betty went off to buy a wardrobe but returned empty handed, as the sort of thing they wanted wasn't available.
Just before half past ten, my cousin Alison arrived to pick me up to go to Bob's funeral. Bob was our next door neighbour, who had lived a very full and happy life. He died last week of lung cancer brought on by asbestosis, aged 82. He had been quite close to my parents and my cousin, helping out and generally being a good neighbour. The celebration of his life at Landican Crem was not at all a religious ceremony, with an orator leading us through the story of his life, with reflections and poems by members of his family. The event was much more like the funerals I attended in New Zealand than the average British funeral. The chapel was packed: standing room only down the aisles, some standing at the front, others at the back, probably about 250 in all.
After, we went to the Grange in Thornton Hough for refreshments. Alison came back home here for a coffee after that. We talked about and looked at some things that have changed here since her last visit.
Tonight, all the boys went to the youth event, David as a leader. Viv and I went off to have an evening-meal at a local restaurant, but we couldn't: it was full. So we tried the Chinese further along - also full. So we ended up at the Indian again. But the full banquet for two at an affordable price was not something to complain about.
As we walked back up to the church hall, however, there was. Rain gave way to heavy rain, and as we reached the bottom of Heath Road, heavy rain gave way to hail. I was doaking wet by the time we reached the church hall, and rather wished I hadn't still been wearing my funeral and interview suit. We warmed up and dried out when we got home.
But now, it's bedtime. Tomorrow: The Grand National, a famous British race that is far more important than the Melbourne Cup. British readers: more famous than the what? US readers: I've never heard of either. Aus/NZ readers: That's ridiculous! How can any race be more important than the Melbourne Cup? French readers: What about the Prix de L'Arc de Triomphe? - let's celebrate our diversity.