Dedicated to Patricia Mary Jones – Auntie Pat.
5/3/1936 – 7/5/2018.
I recently lost one of my Auntie’s; Auntie Pat. Considering I had seen her just a couple of weeks before she passed away, it was something of a big shock. She was 82 years young and a wonderful woman.
Why am I dedicating a blog to her, I hear you ask? I hadn’t planned to, thinking it might seem trivial to dedicate a piece of what I call, ‘almost-freewriting’, to someone who deserves so much more. Yet, while out running yesterday, memories of Auntie Pat came flooding back.
Running past vast areas covered in fragrant, white, wild-garlic reminded me of her. She was a great cook. Whilst in the Lincoln area on business she had cooked dinner for me a couple of times. The first time I popped in she cooked fresh salmon, telling me, ‘It’s so much better fried in butter, than baked in the oven, my wench’.
Although she didn’t speak with a strong accent, she sometimes called me, ‘Wench’, or, ‘Cocker’, – which always made me smile inside – reminding me of her Dad, my Granddad Somner. I guess with her parents (my g parents) being from Redditch and Berkshire, Auntie Pat, my mum and my other auntie’s have (in the main) a mixed-accent.
From that very day I have always fried my salmon in butter – to hell with the calories, the taste is so improved.
She loved her garden. Her first house in Lincoln had such a pretty yard full of pots and colour. As I spotted the oh-so-blue bluebells (a colour that really suited Auntie Pat) on my run, I was reminded of Auntie Pat – who often wore a chiffon scarf draped around her neck. She was an effortlessly-glamorous lady.
This is her with my dad – her brother-in-law at my fiftieth birthday party. One of my very favourite photos.
When I last saw her, she was in her dressing gown – not feeling too good, and a little down. Yet, after chatting for a while, a sparkle returned to her eyes and her face became more animated; especially when chatting about her children and grandchildren, who she was immensely proud of. Auntie Pat’s nurturing of them has produced a super-intelligent and super-kind family. I am proud to be closely related to them all.
Her words that day were,‘I must have done something right’.
Auntie Pat…you sure did do something right. Many things actually. I always doubt my own parenting skills – I have made many mistakes – but if I can be half the Grandmother that you have been I’ll be very, very, content.
So, night-night Auntie Pat. Sleep in peace. You knew how loved you were and still are. You will live on in so many people’s memories for so many different reasons.
Vivacious, kind, caring, attractive, glamorous, humorous, football-loving are just some of the words to describe you.
With all my love,