31 July 2014


 Damascus 2010

Allepo 2008

As dawn breaks I am writing this as a sort of catharsis, my way of grieving, for I cannot sleep. For the last few nights I have trained my body to stay awake while I held a vigil by the bedside of my dying soul mate. So I am used to being wide awake between the hours of 1800 and 1000 the next day.

I have known, in the biblical sense, many women in my life. Some I have loved deeply, others were just good friends or passing ships in the night and at least two were witches which it would have been better not to have known. Hanna who died yesterday was the one shining light, my best friend and worst critic, a great lover and wonderful soul mate, for she really of all the women, really understood me better than I did myself.

When we met 25 years, 3 months and six days ago the last thing I wanted was another relationship with a woman and certainly not with one that was almost 10 years older than me. I was on my way to becoming a misogynist for one of these witches had just crushed me. I had nothing to laugh about and was content in my sorrow, yet Hanna found the key to make me laugh at myself.

For quite awhile we were just good friends, she was someone I could talk to and neither of us were looking for a relationship or had the wish to “know” one another. But when we did ignite that spark it became a roaring fire which consumed our souls and made them one.

She was a great support and hostess during my service time, when I was required to represent the Crown and had to entertain to encourage better understanding between our allies. And what was pleasing for me, was that she was well liked and respected by those interlocutors I had to deal with at that time. Without her support I could never have managed to sail alone around the world, or find my feet when it ended. She was there for me when I needed it most with advice and critique, though the latter was not always appreciated by me. She had the ability to ask the pertinent questions that nearly always pricked the bubble of my enthusiasm, much to my annoyance. So she kept my feet firmly on the ground, but also knew how to encourage me to follow my dreams. She made me a much better person than I was before.

We shared many passions, such as language and a thirst for knowledge of new cultures and religions. We loved travel and meeting people and exploring the ancient rubble that exists in our world. And we loved taking photos, though she hated me taking hers. Whereas I loved being in hers and we would laugh about the photos she took of me in the left, right, or in the middle of her pictures with a photo smile on my face.

So I am a little lost at sea at the moment for my soul mate has sailed over the horizon and is gone from me. But I know she is there still, just like the ship sailing on the ocean, and she is in my heart and will continue to guide me through the rest of my life.

May God grant her eternal peace and ever lasting life.

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