I can’t shake the memory of the feeling of being utterly out of place.
I felt it in my stomach, in my tongue-tied mouth, and my anxious mind as I vigilantly scanned the room looking for some haven where I could wait inconspicuously for the service to begin. Trying to appear casual, and just to blend in, I gazed at the photos—all of them, one by one, for as long as possible without giving anyone else reason to take notice of me. Not that it was difficult to give attention to the display, or that I was only pretending to be interested. Each photo told of the healthier parts of a life of which I had only known the premature end. I found it hard to look away. It can be a comforting thing to continue getting to know a person after they have died.