This morning, my grandmother was buried at All Souls Cemetery in Chardon, Ohio. Bishop Pevec (former auxillary bishop of the Greater Cleveland Catholic Diocese), who was a personal friend of my grandmother's, said the funeral Mass at Our Lady of Mount Carmel church in Wickliffe. Surprisingly, he even remembered my name after 21 years (he confirmed me back in 1984 when I was still in jr. high school). It was funny...I kind of ducked after I took communion, expecting a bolt of lightning to come zapping through the roof and strike me dead.

Even worse, I took communion from Bishop Pevec. I think I committed at least 15 sins right there, several of them mortal. Sigh...add them to the black marks already on my soul (what they used to tell me in CCD).

It was freezing cold (about 20 degrees), out at All Souls (but it should have been names Lost Souls...it's so far away from everything and so...barren); the casket was surrounded by dozens of family members and friends. The most poignant moment of the day was when my father laid a flower on his mother's casket...the look on his face will be burned into my memory forever; he was entering a new phase of his life...and my heart went out to him.

I love you, dad.

Afterward, the nuns of Our Lady of Mount Carmel put on a nice wake at the school building. Roasted chicken, scalloped potatoes, sliced roast beef, mixed vegetables, fresh dinner rolls, and Vernor's. I love that stuff...it's hard to find in California.

More later...I don't feel like writing much about it right now. I'm fine, it's cold as balls here, and I had absolutely no idea I had so many cousins. I mean, it's in the hundreds. I may be Slovak/Polish/Irish/German (but mostly Slovak), but I have a whole Italian branch of my family and my first cousin cousin Marguerite (one of the Italians) just adopted two infant girls from China.

I'm also convinced most of my family is wonderfully insane. I love them.

By the way, here is my grandmother's obituary.



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