Here we are, 2018! I bet you all did your new year’s resolutions and expressed your wishes for the year to come. I’m not a big fan of NYE and resolutions. It always sounds to me like I have to sort out an entire year in one night, commit to a set of self-imposed rules and then realize around mid February that I should probably cut something out of that endless list. In my experience I’ve learned that Life can turn upside down in one single day and that day is not necessarily January 1st so I choose to commit to myself and give the best that I can NOW, in the present, everyday of the year. On this note, to wish you a Happy New Year Coxy style, I’d love to tell you a little tragic-comic story that marked a brand new beginning in my Life. It happened on a sunny day in June 2012.
My mom had a diary in which she’d journal her thoughts, the day she learned she was about to die she wrote her last will in it. She expressed the desire to be cremated and have her ashes scattered into the sea in Côte d’Azur, the south of France. When I think about that episode, there was so much drama to it and eventually, it turned into such an exhilarating day. I’ll give you a hint: think of the film “the Big Lebowsky” when they scatter Donnie’s ashes and prepare for the rest of the story!
I had to fight a lot with my aunt (my mom’s twin sister) to have my mom’s will executed. My aunt is very religious and her wish was to have my mom’s ashes buried with my grandma’s and my grandpa’s in a little cemetery close to her country house. I was against it. My mom had expressed a very specific desire and, although I could understand my aunt’s pain, there was no way in the world I would have allowed that. The idea of my mom being confined into a grave when in Life she had been such a free spirit was giving me anxiety. After arguing for months with my aunt, she finally consented to fulfill my mom’s last will.
The day I set for the ashes ceremony finally came. YuX (my ex), my friend Imelda and I jumped into the car and drove all the way to Cap d’Antibes a beautiful town by the sea in the South of France. It was a hot weekend at the beginning of June, everybody was on the road heading towards the seaside to get some freshness. It took us hours and a few stops before we could get to our destination. During the whole trip, I had my mom’s urn in my bag and I’d hold like a baby as if I wanted to protect her.
Antibes Vieille is a beautiful little old town right above the sea. It looks like it’s suspended in time. It was so appropriate for my mom. When we finally arrived there, we got a hotel room and set our alarm up for the next morning in order to be early at the pier and rent a boat. Unfortunately, as we got there, all the small boats had already been rented for the entire weekend. There was none available, zero, nada. I tried to negotiate with one of the owners of the boats as much as I could to no avail. I was disappointed and at the same time determined to accomplish my goal.
There was only one other option possible for us to be able to leave the shore and reach the open sea: a PEDAL BOAT!
YuX, Imelda and I gazed at each other and I said: “What the Fuck, let’s do it!” and we embarked on it. I sat in the back, still holding my bag like a baby and YuX and Imelda begun pedaling towards the open sea. About 15 minutes of pedaling later, we were far from the shore, in the middle of the blue waters, just the three of us and my Mom’s ashes.
I took the urn out of my bag and opened it. I approached the edge of the boat, took a deep breath and said “Bye Mom, you’re free now” and poured the ashes into the water. As I was watching them blending with the sea, a flood of tears started streaming down my face and a big laughter surfaced from the depths of my soul (picture the three of us on a pedal boat with an urn in the middle of the sea and you’ll most likely get the funny side).
I was desperately crying and laughing hard at the same time. YuX and Imelda were holding me and I said: “Let’s jump at three! One, two… and splash! There we were, all crying and laughing and swimming in the blue with my mom one last time.
I didn’t scatter all the ashes into the sea that day. I kept a tiny part of them aside and put them in a small box that I took with me when I moved to LA. I dispersed the remaining ashes into the Ocean, in a beautiful spot at El Matador beach in Malibu. I go there every time I want to connect with my Mom.
After the ceremony, Imelda, YuX and I started pedaling back towards the shore. We crossed paths with a small boat, its name was “New Beginnings”. I took it as a sign from Destiny.
’Til the next one!