Undertake that!

Hey Colin,

As soon as you told me at the time that you and your mates had boarded the ferry from Portsmouth to Bilbao, I got in touch with the local undertaker. I told him you were bringing Lucy’s remains with you, as promised. That they would come according to customs requirements in a sealed plastic container. And that once you arrived in Mértola on the 8th of May, we would like him to transfer the ashes into a more presentable urn. 
I believe I told you that he answered that within the EU these things could be easily done by post. This proved to me that the man is definitely not the brightest candle on the cake. He must be the only person alive who never heard of Brexit. Moreover, I had told him that you were already on your way. Therefore, his remark was completely irrelevant.
Anyway, after your visit to us, the very next day we took the container to his… uh, shop. As you know, it is about a hundred yards beyond the local theatre, viewed from the hotel where you all stayed. This was on the same day when afterwards we had lunch together, remember?
Well, he wasn’t there, the effing undertaker. His wife was, though. I briefed her about the conversation I had had with her husband. She looked at me as if I was from another planet — a look I get almost every day due to my size — and a genie could any moment emerge from the box I held under my arm. What was in it, she wanted to know.
Well, Colin, Lucy must have told you once or twice that I have the patience of a saint, so I said: ‘What did I just tell you, you stupid woman?’
‘Yes, but are the ashes loose or in a separate bag? Because if they are loose, we have a problem.’

That’s when I lost my renowned, almost proverbial cool: ‘How the hell would I know, woman? The box came sealed, and as you can see it still is! Moreover, I don’t wanna know about the problems in your effing profession. It is your job to sort them, innit?’
That’s when my wife decided to step in and explain calmly with an angelic smile on her face what we expected of her and/or her husband. With a frown, she reluctantly promised that she would take the rather complicated matter up with her hubby. 
Nice, innit? She takes up, her husband takes under.

As we heard nothing in the next couple of days, I thought it wise to phone him. I couldn’t get in touch. Therefore, I texted him to apologise for my behaviour towards his wife and for the fact that I may not have shown the patience that they are accustomed to from their regular clients (as they are all dead).
No response. Which by the way is not at all unusual in Portugal. On the contrary! 
Well, long story short, Lucy is still sitting on the undertaker’s desk. If he’s not in a hurry, she certainly isn’t.
Since then we have travelled four or five times to Mértola. Every time we stop by the undertaker’s, Maria thinks it wiser I remain waiting in the car. Two times the shop was closed, two or three times Maria was sent off, because the undertaker was not in.
So, you can imagine that I’m in an undertaker’s mood by now! I wanna take someone under!

Does that answer your question about how things are proceeding as to Lucy’s remains? 
Nevertheless, it remains a mystery to me how in Portugal they manage to bury a person the very next day after he or she dies. With caretakers like that?

Take care!
Jaap and Maria

How is Steve doing after his unfortunate encounter with a deer? You call him the deer hunter now? His bike was a total loss? Oh, dear?

Dit vind je misschien ook leuk...

1 reactie

  1. Jaap Slager schreef:

    Today it’s exactly one year and five months since our Lúcia passed away.