After my father took his last breath, everybody was gathered around, not knowing what to say or do next. We thought we needed to get a doctor to certify his death, and called the hospital but they told us to call the Police instead, which we did. Since this was a natural death, Police said to go to the station during office hours.We then called up my grandparents to inform them of the sad news, and I went with my uncle to pick them up. The were in tears when we arrived. Once everybody's together back at my house we discussed what would be the next step. We called up the funeral parlour to make the necessary arrangements to get my dad's body cleaned up and prepare for the wake. As dawn broke, a light drizzle fell, as if the heavens were weeping too. Some people in the house said they say a white moth flying around the house too that morning. Some of the closer relatives started arriving that morning itself already. Kit, my dad's favourite black cat, had been keeping vigil in my dad's room in the last few days, and was visibly agitated when he couldn't find my dad after his body had been moved and put into the coffin. He's also been sulking around the house and now spends most of the day sleeping and keeping watch on one of the couches facing the coffin. He knows. The other animals too have been acting a little strange, but Kit is definitely badly affected by the loss. As for us humans in the immediate family, we seem to be holding up relatively well. We had our shedding of tears before and during his death, but now we seem to be more occupied with the preparations for the funeral, and it seems to be more for the visitors than for us. I guess with all these things going on, it's a bit hard for us to contemplate the loss and grieve. I think Tristan is feeling quite distressed because he's the closest to my dad of us three brothers, although he doesn't really show it. This morning we went to the cave where the monks reside, and offered them _Dana_ (breakfast) and they chanted and sent 'merits' to my dad. The Buddhist monks will be having _Dana_ here in our house tomorrow at 9am, and followed with the funeral ceremony and cremation at 11am.

Monday thoughts