a peek inside the fishbowl

18 Dec, 2020

This is what a funeral looks like right now

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Misc. life

I was a funeral today for Mark’s aunt. Her passing wasn’t Covid related, but Covid didn’t help matters.

I am sad, but even sadder that the novel coronavirus has changed things this much.

  • There was no indoor service, only an outdoor, graveside, service.
  • Attendees had to stand at least 6 feet away from the grave and at least 6 feet apart.
  • There was a limit to the number of people who could attend.
  • The building – and washrooms – were closed.
  • Everyone had to wear gloves and a mask, which made it challenging to recognize some extended family members.
  • There was no hugging.
  • There was no gathering after the service.

As I mentioned, the service took place outside. Fortunately it was sunny and calm. It was also -14C. My mask kept my face as warm as a scarf would. I wore long underwear under my black wool slacks. I wore a hat. I wore a wool ski sweater underneath my heaviest parka. I wore winter boots even though there wasn’t any snow on the ground; my toes were cold by the time we piled back into the car.

Aunt Joan was one of the kindest souls I’ve ver known. I know it’s pointless to wish for things that can never be, but I really wish we’d been able to honour her memory like we would have in the Before Times.

One of Joan’s daughters, who’d kept me informed about her mother’s health status these last few weeks over Facebook, told me that Joan enjoyed a glass of Zinfandel. I suggested that when this is all over we should get together and raise a glass in her memory.

I look forward to the day we will be able to hug each other at a funeral once again. In the meantime, I will light a candle for her and remember her fondly.


1 Response to "This is what a funeral looks like right now"

1 | a peek inside the fishbowl » Blog Archive First three stories, then eyes forward - a peek inside the fishbowl

January 2nd, 2021 at 2:53 pm


[…] realize I left a pretty downhearted post up here at the top, probably for longer than I had meant, but don’t take it as a sign of […]

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My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human offspring: Emma (23) and Sarah (21). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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