I’m back home after a 4hr round trip to the New Forest to fulfill my friend’s wish and scatter his ashes beside a particular bridge.
I left home at 6.45am, exactly a year to the minute after the phone call from the hospital to tell me he’d gone. With the help of Des’s friend, Chris, I had identified a bridge in a photo of Des, which Chris took over 30 years before. The family that Des had lived with for his last few years had confirmed that Des’s wish had been to have his ashes scattered in the New Forest, so I put the two things together and set off for Brockenhurst this morning.
The weather was terrible but the rain relented when I got to the bridge. It is a lovely quiet spot and I made sure his ashes were well protected from the wind. Then I stood on the bridge and said my goodbyes.
After a traumatic year, which cost me a breakdown and more therapy, it was wonderful to drive back, his playlist rocking the car speakers, singing my head off, and knowing I’ve done the right thing by my old friend. The New Forest ponies will look after him now.