Cliff’s Birthday—March 23

Getting right into his birthday cake.

Cliff always loved his birthday. He used to say that March was the best month because it was when he was born. August was the second best month—you can guess why.

We both hoped he would have been able to celebrate this, his 74th birthday, but sadly it was not meant to be.

The simple, temporary, white cross.

Cliff wasn’t even around to celebrate Christmas last year. He was buried on December 12.

December 23, 2016

However, he did get an early Christmas present of a drone. He used it quite a few times over our property at Arnold Acres and really loved flying it.

This cemetery shot was taken on the drive back from Hokitika after I picked up my sister Jane from the airport. She is at the back left and I’m right behind Cliff’s grave with the small white cross.

The permanent headstone, with room for my name.

It wasn’t easy, but I wasted no time in picking out a permanent headstone. Polished black stone might seem unusual but because of the West Coast’s high rainfall, moss would grow on natural stone and this black stone is the hardest, most durable available here. Most have gold writing but I thought that would be too garish for Cliff.

Fresh flowers for Cliff’s birthday

I take Cliff flowers every week but today was special so he got all new flowers, some from our garden—the orange dahlias and sprigs of rosemary which are hidden in this photo but will last, some from a new florist in Greymouth “Courtyard Florist”. These are the gerberas and dark red leucadendrons in the back. I’ve planted a leucadendron and will plant more cutting flowers in the future.

A beautiful spot.

Gladstone Memorial Park is the most beautiful cemetery I’ve seen and it is only about a half hour drive. The Tasman Sea is on one side and beautiful native bush (forest) is on the other. Peaceful and well kept, still, it is hard to believe that Cliff’s body rests there—far, far too soon.

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