March 13, 2010

RIP Nanna.

Every family is different and mine is no exception. The following is a description on how we do funerals.

Wednesday saw the passing of my Nanna. Marion Frater was an amazing woman, a kick ass cook, a breeder of epic proportions and a stylish chick to boot. A farmers wife, a beautiful singer and a fondness for champagne that has been passed down from generation to generation.

Flights to the Gold Coast were organised for a Friday Funeral.

This side of the family is about 50 people and I took my son H to represent the grand kids. He is cute and less prone to huge public melt downs than J - plus there would be no tiaras required.

Most of Marion's six children are raving lefties and staunch atheists so a church service was out of the question. Instead we headed off to Pioneer Country. Not a particular region, but an actual theme park. A bit like Piss-Weak World. We missed the turn off and I started laughing saying "How Naff is that Place!" and then I realised we were turning around and entering Pioneer World and pulled up next to a hearse.

The casket was a cardboard lilac affair. Purple was Nanna's favourite colour. All of the granddaughters were asked to carry to coffin the the pergola next to the pool. I immediately opted out of this much to the objections of my aunties. You see the coffin looked a bit flimsy and Nanna was not a waif. I had bad images rolling about in my head about what may happen. So the other granddaughters tried and it was quickly changed to be the grandsons – there were a lot more of them and they are a stronger crew.

The coffin was moved to the pergola and the lid removed.

The. Lid. Removed.

I was pressured to go and see Nanna so I did a fake fly by with my eyes shut guided by my sister L. H was all over it. Looking at Nanna and placing a drawing he did for her of a purple elephant inside. The coffin was closed and a very nice casual service started with a glass of champers for all. Along with the choice comment from H “But how is she going to breathe in that box?”

My sister N did a fantastic job keeping the ceremony moving along. All the traditional things were there like a poem read from a Blackberry, Numerous ciggie breaks, some face painting and much eating of Jelly Babies (Nanna’s Favourite). N did lose her shit a bit and dropped the F-Bomb at a cousin though. There was a box of crayons, stickers, paints and glitter which were used to decorate her coffin – like you do.

She was sent out in style – and by the time the hearse came to collect her – H was in the pool in his undies and the port had been cracked. The eclectic crew who came to see off Nanna waved her goodbye all the way to the end of Pioneer World’s dusty drive then proceeded to put in a solid display of drinking which lasted into the wee hours.

Nanna - not one of these people would have been there if it were not for you. Loved and missed always.

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