Dear son Jonathan:
I don’t cry that often.
I shed tears when John Lennon was murdered (and gave you his name in memory).
I cried when I heard the news that my father had died in Australia.
I cried when you rang to tell me that my father in law had been killed in a farming accident – and you were crying too.
And today I wept when you jumped out of the car at the traffic lights, grabbed your overnight bag from the the boot (which you’ll soon be calling “trunk”), and left me for last time before flying to Manhattan to pursue your career. The lights were changing so we didn’t even time enough to kiss!
|Edward and Jonathan – my two boys|
Lynne and I had a wonderful time with you at San Carlo’s last night. Manuel the water water who tried to up-sell you a £99 bottle of Barollo was a joy, and Richard and Sylvia, dear friends ever since you were 3 completed a wonderful evening, which went on till 1.30 a.m. with my hand (reputedly) on a fiddler’s thigh. I haven’t been up as long as that since I was a teenager (and neither has my palm).
I would have loved to be given the chance that you now have – to develop my talents in NYC.
Legend has it that when I was a student I borrowed the money each year to fly to the US and spend 3 months a year in the land of Woodstock, take away hamburgers, Pepsi and Winston (never Coca Cola or Marlboro, for they supported the Vietnam war, don’t you know!).
And I made some terrific friends there who are still in touch. Different culture, but same language. Do get to know them as much as you can.
The world is now much smaller than it was, and when we feel the need we’ll meet up, I know. Enjoy the life, and if you have time, love the ones I loved.
This morning at the traffic lights was a comical, but tearful episode, as we parted. You were given your name when you were born a week after John Lennon was murdered.
I have cried when great men have gone from my life – John, Joe, and Walter. There will be tears for many others, shed by you and me, in the years to come.
But right now, as you pack your tea chests I feel the pain of bereavement
With a lump in my throat, I love you, my first-born.