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Remembering Pat

It's a sunny, cold day at the farmette. Lots of frost covering everything, including the deck furniture we hoiked out a couple of weeks ago.

We lost one of my best friends early Thursday morning. Pat went into hospital after suffering abdominal discomfort. Turned out she had an aortic aneurysm and, despite the surgeons' best efforts, she could not be saved.

We were shocked. I had just had a really good chinwag with her on Wednesday evening. We did our usual summing up of what was going on with our respective families, solving the problems of the world (if they'd just listen to us), and recommending books, TV shows and movies to one another.

We were also gearing up to have yet another Ladies Who Lunch.

This is a little thing I started about 10 years ago to keep in touch with the ladies I used to work with in communications at the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. Our group was pretty tight back in the day, and our semi-regular lunches are treasured times. Here we are at a restaurant in Guelph. A truly supportive bunch of women who remain fiercely loyal to one another.

That was Pat. She deeply loved her family and held her closest friends dear in her heart. She was sharp, quick-witted and had a wickedly dark sense of humour. She made me laugh regularly with her wry, down-to-earth take on the world, the universe and everything.

She was also a cracker jack communications planner. I remember more than once having her plans save my rear end when the Minister's office needed written products for some announcement RIGHT NOW.

We spent some really good times together. During a six-month hiatus from work I took back in the day, I'd pick her up every Friday and we'd go off on a wee adventure somewhere in the province. One time in particular I remember was a fabulous trip to Dundurn castle in Hamilton. I didn't even know this national historic site existed until we started doing these day aways.

She was really part of the family - here she is at sister Sandy's 50th birthday celebration at the farmette.

Best of all, she was a cat lady. Bobby was her lovely orange bob-tailed manx for 20 years, and then she adopted Alice Anne. We'd trade stories about the latest goofy thing our respective felines were up to.

I will miss her terribly. More than three decades of friendship is a looong time, and she was a huge part of my life. While we saw less of each other recently, we talked on the phone a lot. Funny thing was, she'd often say nothing much was happening, but we still managed a good 30-minute chat. I'll always love Pat, may she rest in peace.

Gratuitous cat photo is from a couple of years ago. All the boys (Calvin, Hobbes and Fred) are lolling in the sunshine in the mud room.

1 Comment

Apr 07

That is indeed sad news. I too enjoyed Pat when we would meet up outside. I certainly didn't know her as well as the Communication team but I always thought you were a great team in the true sense that had fun together and got the job done as well. I imagine you will gather the team together for a memory share and hopefully a few chuckles too.

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