So here I am in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada at my home away from home, the Marriot Courtyard Hotel. I have checked out of my room but I am sitting around waiting for my fiend Colette who is attending to more important things. There is a gorgeous view of the river valley and I am emailing (the world’s busiest person actually) and explaining where I am and what I am doing. But suddenly I am totally stymied. I rush over to a collection of the wait staff.
Me: I have a really embarrassing question to ask, please tell no one that I asked this question because I will appear very stupid.
They: OK, we promise.
Me: Well I know I lived in Edmonton from 1955-1967 and I should know this but what is the name of that river.
They: It is the Saskatchewan River.
Me: Well, that is stupid! This is Alberta not Saskatchewan.
They: OK its the Alberta River.
Me: Thank you, this place needs me.
That conversation did take place, it did. Colette emailed me this morning with the following heading: I have downloaded the slideshow from Dad’s funeral and it went on to say: “so, if you can get a little portable drive, we can make a copy for you to take with you.” So, of course, that is great news. Allan Meunier made it and it was the most moving slideshow I have ever seen with the most perfect music and i will treasure it forever. BUT in all of the family pictures there is NONE of me. I have been around in this family for thirty years, Christmases, a Caribbean cruise, the umpteenth wedding anniversary, trips to my property in West Marin even. But no me. I, being a California lawyer, complained vociferously.
Me: I have seen the slideshow three times and I am not in it. No pictures of me.
Nadia (Allan’s wife): Its because I paid him not to put any of you in there.
Me: And all because I have not been to Crane Lake! (insider joke).
By the way, Nadia and Allan have the most handsome son.
Me: Stefan is so handsome! Where did that come from? It must have been the milkman.
Them: No response, perhaps significantly not a denial. Actually Stefan does look like Allan. But it was my job to cheer every one up in the moments before the funeral. I did very well and got help dressing. The pearl choker (with remnants of red paint) placed upon my neck and my sandals strapped on. It is difficult not being at the Trump International Hotel where these things are done for me. My clothing selection was completed before leaving Vancouver. It was Triple C. and Hottie who decided upon the long black sleeveless dress as it was going to be hot.
Perfect, thanks Guys.
So nowhere on the slide show but I did make an appearance on the family picture table. Colette and I were laughing in this picture, which is no surprise because always do when we get together. Colette is very good with jokes, not me. I always have to ab lib. It is dirty work but someone has got to do it. The picture is attached to this blog, it was taken at Christmas 2015. I sat with the family but there was no mention of me in the incredible ecology, nor in the prepared program. I whispered to Colette:
Me: I bet everyone is wondering who I am.
Colette: Just leave them guessing
I fended for myself yesterday afternoon and went to a Taste of Edmonton. I just happened upon it, it was a really great outdoor event with food from Edmonton restaurants and drinks and everything. But something very strange happened at the end. I was sitting and minding my own business and this man sat next to me. We started chatting, he works in Fort McMurray. I told him I was writing a book about my uncle Dave Dryburgh who died in 1948. Honest to goodness, he said that he had heard of him. I cannot believe it, I was struck speechless. Yes, speechless. You heard it here first. This man was not making a pass at me or anything and he knew I was leaving to meet Colette. It must be the truth.
So I am sending this off without checking for spelling and grammatical errors. Do not complain, did you pay anything for it? NO