So those of you who visit this site might remember that, roughly two months ago, my father in law died.
His name was Rodney Cole, and he was a good man who loved nature, photography and nature photography. He’d ride around his South Florida community in a golf cart, pursuing birds and alligators and all sorts of animals through his lens. What started as a hobby turned passion, and Rodney was extremely good at it.
Anyhow, a few hours ago we bid our final farewell to Rodney Cole. We (his widow, Rodney’s daughter, his son-in-law, his grandchildren, my sister in law, my wife and my kids (also his grandchildren)) went to one of his favorite spots and placed his ashes—contained in a biodegradable urn—in the water. Then we watched and listened. To the birds. To the wind. To trees swaying in the warm Florida breeze. It was a truly wonderful experience; one that (for me) had little to do with spirituality or religion and everything to do with a last moment alongside someone in what was, perhaps, his favorite spot in the world.
I’ve never fully grasped death, and I’m not certain I ever will.
But as 2017 comes to a close, I will fondly remember its lingering hours as the time I stood beside the water with genuinely lovely people and wished the moment could last just a bit longer.