I always used to marvel at how many names he had.

It wasn’t really a thing to have two middle names at home. I only had one. I knew a lot of people who had none. He was obviously Grandad first and foremost, so I marvelled at the fact that he had FIVE parts to his name. It was a big deal.

He was a big deal.

I saw him last Friday for the final time. Four trains later, I made it to hold his hand. He passed away the following morning.

You’d think it would be easier, actually being in the right country for once.

It’s not.

My Grandad would have been ecstatic at the results of the rugby today, which could almost redeem the results from our local rugby team this time last week, where my brother rightly pointed out that he would have said they were “Bloody useless”.

It was strange returning to the house and not opening the door to the front room to see him in his armchair, watching the TV. He’d always scramble for the remote to mute whatever he was watching when I walked into the room as if what I was about to say to him was the only thing he would want to hear. Even when I talked to him on the phone he would listen to me ramble on about university and my friends and my job and Spain, and he would hum in all the right places and laugh almost in exasperation. He’d always say he loved me when we hung up.

I tried to get on with things this week. I rushed back to Chester and tried to pretend that everything was okay, and that I was okay. You would have never let the cracks show like I have done. Like I still do.

I suppose it shows how much I miss you. I will miss watching all the quiz shows with you. I’ll miss sharing a bottle of white wine with you at the family meals. I’ll miss your random stories about my ancestors that you discovered when making our family tree.

I have the PDF of that on my computer, and our memories in my heart.

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