We had my brother’s memorial in Great Neck yesterday. It was fitting that it was one of the worst weather days of the season. A gigantic Nor’easter clobbered much of the area in sleet, freezing rain, snow and wind. My husband was FREAKING out about traveling in the bad weather so we made a plan to go to Great Neck one day early. We stayed in a tiny hotel that is next door to the funeral home where we had the memorial. When I was growing up the hotel was called the Bayberry but has now been reborn as a boutique hotel called The Andrew. It was very hi-fashion inside and we loved our king sized bed but the room was small and hot. P loved it and declared to all that would listen that she now loves hotels and wants to stay in another one very soon. I’m very glad that we stayed overnight. It cut down on the stress of yesterday a lot. Driving home last night went very smoothly. Once we got to the thruway it started snowing and the roads were slushy when we got off the highway but we still made it home in a little over two hours.
The memorial was really nice. We had quite a few people inspite of the weather. My family from Connnecticut couldn’t make it because of the weather. We had many of my brother’s friends there and my closest friend from High School came with his parents. I went up first. I brought a copy of an email that I received from our cousins in Italy and I read that. They were so sweet to Michael when he and Erica met them two Octobers ago. They really treated him like the second coming of my Grandfather. The email described how my brother had stood up during lunch and told them all in English about how much it meant to him to meet his family and even though they didn’t understand the English words, they knew what he was saying and felt his language. Then I read what I wrote. It was the best thing that I have ever written I think. I needed it to be because it was for my brother. He was such a critic and so very very smart I knew that I had to make it just right. I felt him there with me and I know that he approved. It was a little harsh here and there but that’s OK, so was he. I was angry when I wrote it and I’m still angry. He did such a stupid thing and broke all our hearts. You can’t just answer that with rainbows and flowers. Sometimes when you get punched it is OK to punch right back. Two of my brother’s friends also spoke. One read something that Erica had written. It was really beautiful. I’m so glad that a part of her was there with us as well. She really loved my brother and I love her for that. He was hard to love sometimes. My parents both spoke as well. Afterwards everyone pretty much scattered to get home again. This was fine. We wanted to get back on the road right away too. That’s all I’m going to say for now. Maybe I’ll post what I read a little later.