We recently attended the funeral of David Harries. It was a bittersweet gig, sad but not in the slightest bit depressing. Stripped of dust-to-dust religious delusions, the ceremony was the perfect celebration of an OTT life lived totally in the moment. Never was the old adage ‘live fast, die young’ any more apt. It was a motif David wore on his designer sleeve without apology or regret. Laughter echoed through the chapel. We were celebrants, not mourners.
On the way to the funeral in London, we stopped off for a spot of tiffin at Balans Soho Café. They have an interesting mission statement, something they call their ‘manifesto’. It goes like this:
I know it’s just a corporate mantra but it’s more uplifting and less cynical than most. And I think it’s a sentiment David would have heartily approved of. I know I do. We raised a glass.
David leaves behind my old mucker, Philip, his partner of 21 years. In place of floral tributes to wither and rot, Philip asked people to donate to the Za Foundation, a friend’s charity currently raising money to give a Christmas dinner to children in South Africa who might otherwise go hungry. Few if any reading this will have known David and I know it’s an expensive time of year but if you have any pennies to spare… well, you know the drill. Here’s the link.
If you do donate, please mention it’s in David’s memory. Philip would be really chuffed.
David Harries (1960-2016)
11 thoughts on “A Manifesto for Life”
Beautifully written, and from your description of David’s farewell it seems we managed to give him the send off we wanted, and he deserved.
As I wrote on FB, it was the least I could do and it really was a splendid send off 😀
. . way to go – in life and when bereft of it!
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Too young to go but it sounds like he packed plenty in those 56 years.
He certainly did. It’s been quite a year for this kind of thing, hasn’t it?
Wonderfully un-depressing! I hope when it comes my send off is similar
Me too 😀
Wherever he is, I’ll bet David is having a ball. What a wonderful tribute. Is that your collage?
The collage was created by his partner and sister and displayed at the wake.
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