He was, in a word, a gentleman. I bumped into him at a friend's funeral this weekend. Eighty-four years young, though he didn't look it.
Alert, but quiet. Dignified, but warm. He sat quietly in the back of the room. Near the very back. And alone. Very alone.
No one's happy at funerals. But at least a lot of them come "with" people to funerals. Not this man. He hadn't just lost a dear friend...only weeks earlier he had lost a dear daughter...not long after losing a dear wife.
And so he sat, remembering his friend, no doubt, remembering his life. I only learned these things when I pushed. I guess there was just something about him that made me push.
You see, in a slowly crowding room of people — some of whom complained about the heat, others, delayed flights, and still others, their jobs — this stooping, older man stood out by complaining about nothing at all. Nothing. It's as if all those concerns seemed silly.
When our conversation turned to the crazy markets, his view was much the same...silly. "It happens all the time," he tells me. "Look at history."
He says we overreact, that this too shall pass. He is a man of means but who seems to find "meaning" more valuable.
I feel for his tremendous pain, and sadly put aside my own. A man, who through all his pain, is grateful for life's riches. I wanted to thank him. But I looked around after the funeral, and he was gone.
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