22 November 2011

Like most Americans and not a few Europeans, I can remember the events of 22 Nov 1963 very-very clearly. I know just exactly where I was, what I was doing, what I did, and how the grown-ups around me were reacting.

Every year since that awful day the world changed forever I have sat somewhere quiet and remembered, and prayed for the family-not because they are famous icons of American Royalty but because they are people. I've prayed for Caroline Kennedy especially since her brother was killed and yet more fervently since her uncle passed.

She is the last one left, she is completely alone now, bereft of people with that especial intimate relationship of close family at a time of terrible tragedy. Everyone is gone-her mother, her brother, and her uncles. The cousins count of course, but there is a uniqueness to the family bond of parent and sibling. She has no-one left with whom to grieve, and that has grieved me deeply since Ted Kennedy died.

Yesterday as I went about my day something about the sound of my footsteps caught my attention and held throughout the entire day. The sound of my footfalls on the back garden path especially got my attention; the sound is as different as can be from the sound of footfalls on the American desert floor at dawn (my all time favourite sound just before the creak of saddle leather) yet somehow very nearly as comforting, nostalgic, restorative.

I'm going to listen to the sounds of my footfalls today.

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