A few months ago our neighbor Kevin died.
He wasn’t a close friend, in fact we knew very little about him. But every Christmas we left a gift basket on his porch and he left us a very nice thank you card.
All we knew was his very regular daily routine. He would come out his back door in the morning, get into his car and head to breakfast somewhere, then later he’d do the same thing but to buy groceries. Then in the evening his bedroom light would go on and all this became part of our routine too.
After he passed, a section of guttering got blown off in a storm and dangled down in front of the house in a very disapproving way. When we got back from Scotland last week it had been removed and the next day a ‘for sale’ sign went up in his carefully manicured front yard. But his new car is still parked behind the house.
In the last few days we’ve seen over twenty groups of folk viewing the house, and while it’s been quite entertaining and we try to imagine who we’d like for new neighbors. We wonder what Kevin would think.
We checked all the local obituaries and couldn’t find one for anyone called Kevin or that even seemed to be his age.
There’s an old saying that you finally die when the last person who remembers you dies – – –
No one is finally dead until the ripples they cause in the world die away, until the clock wound up winds down, until the wine she made has finished its ferment, until the crop they planted is harvested. The span of someone’s life is only the core of their actual existence.
Terry Pratchett, Reaper Man