The Final Frontier

As the anniversary of my dad's death hurtles towards me, a post of lx's made me stop and think. Actually, not so much a think, as a reminder. I'm a great believer in being prepared. My first will was drafted when I was 27. My second will when I was 38.

I'm a control freak and I want things the way I want them. The great thing is, everything is paid for, so it'll be a doddle for the executors of my will to carry out my instructions. Thankfully, my executors are literate and they are my friends, so I have no particular worries about things being done.

But just in case:

I want to have an eco-friendly coffin, cardboard is fine, as I want to be cremated. My ashes, I would like sprinkled over The Rock, in Trinidad. My three parents had different final wishes. My mother wanted no fuss, no service, cremation, sprinkling on The Rock. Pops wanted a service to honour his sister's religious beliefs. My dad, not particularly bothered, wanted his ashes planted under a Royal Palm at my brother's estate (on the lee-side so my brother and nephew don't pee on him).

I think of the three, my dad's was the most awesome experience. An 'interesting' church service, he'd have enjoyed for all the wrong reasons and a brilliant wake. Really made me understand that the whole funeral thing isn't for the departed, it's for the living. It enables the living to get together remember, mourn and honour the deceased.

Though I will say, some funerals are better than others in terms of content and there are some funerals from which it's hard to come away with anything positive. I think of children and young people when I say this.

What amuses and amazes me is in my line of work is when people say they have not made a Will. Believe it or not, there are only two absolute certainties in Life: death and taxes. If you're alive now, one day you won't be. No getting away from it. Getting a Will sorted means when you do drop dead, everything is made clear about where you want your goods and chattels to go and if you're canny, the taxes part of the equation is mitigated. But talking to some people it's as if writing a Will is a death sentence.

I don't get that, but there you go. Apparently, it's just me being morbid.


  1. I had my only will drawn up at age 20 before the first trip to Viet Nam. I plan to update it soon since I have made the final disposal decisions.

  2. lax ~ *sigh* I was going to be witty and talk about Vietnamese tourist traps, but I suspect you were there before the tourist traps.

    Get that will done. One less thing to worry about.

  3. I made a will in my twenties, I need to update it as I no longer speak to one of the beneficiaries. She would be dancing on my grave...
    Anyhow, I hope this anniversary passes with only a little sadness and a lot of fond memories.

  4. ms scarlet ~ truthfully, it's a bit achey at the moment, but it will be, what it will be.

    Perhaps this is indeed the time for you to update your Will. Use it as an opportunity to piss people off.

    Personally, I have some fuck-ugly, worthless vases to pass on to people who've really annoyed me. Just a shame I won't be there to see their disgust.

  5. Wrote a Will years ago when working abroad. Wonder where the paper is ...

  6. The Sage and I have made really simple wills leaving everything to each other. If we die together, shared between the children. If an aeroplane falls out of the sky when we're all together, between my sister and the Sage's sister.

    The solicitor was a bit bemused by that last, but I'm a Norfolk girl. Belt, braces and bailer twine.

    We've told them, use a Deed of Arrangement to redistribute it all as they wish. We'll be dead, we won't care.

  7. Good night Roses,

    My father left no will,My mother had no idea what to do with his remains.I was amazed that they'd never talked about what to do once they were dead.It fell to me and make the decision so he now interned at Arlington National Cemetery. I truly hope this is what he wanted, yet I have no way to know.

    My first will was drawn when I was 18. I have updated it many times. I honestly believe the most important updates have been in a living will. Making sure that no extraordinary measures are taken to keep me alive in the event on a major injury. Better to leave for Odens Hall than to be imprisoned as an invalid in the medical system. Plan for this it's much harder than death.

    And on that Cheerful note, I bid you a very good weekend.

  8. mago ~ having a Will, somewhere is almost as bad as not having one. I am setting up an In-Case-of-Emergency box. Save Boy trying to go through 3 baskets of paperwork.

    I hate paperwork.

    z ~ sounds like very sensible arrangements to me. I am not surprised. I saw you cooking last Sunday. You do like to be prepared. One thing is for certain, were I to be invited again, I know I could ask if I could bring a +1 without fear of everyone going hungry.

    karl ~ Ah, so you have DNR as well? I have a Lasting Power of Attorney with very similar instructions.

    If you mean *the* Arlington, then I would see no reason why he should mind. Besides, if he was that bothered, he'd have said before he died.


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