Well now this might sound a bit weird, but this blog post is celebrating the passing of someone very special in my life.
My 20 year old Volvo 740gle. Bear with me a minute.
You see, this car, or the Big Friendly Gasguzzler (BFG) as he was affectionately known by all of us, has chaperoned our family and friends through years and years of changing times. The BFG has protected my daughters as they have grown from children to young women; the BFG has helped move a whole garden of plants, been the emergency van for many house-moves not only ourselves but also for friends who couldn't afford hire transport; the BFG has taken many groups of sometimes 7 plus children from home to secret party destination or education experience; the BFG has escorted us excitedly through the joys and delights of weddings and christenings, and taken us with dignity to the hospital visits and funerals of clients, friends and family.
Being environmentally aware, the BFG has had to pay its way ecologically; this he has done by often restricting the need for two vehicles (and receiving grateful thanks along the way from parents not needed to make that return party journey!); he has also removed the need for commercial pick up of bigger items - amazing what we could get in the BFG when the seats went down as well. The back became like a beautiful carpeted palace...
So, this is my public acknowledgement to my car; you served us selflessly; you provided us with experience after experience of magic, hope, joy and sadness; you helped us get the things we needed, and shelter things which just couldn't fit anywhere else during torrential downpours. And you did it all without asking for anything back.
And now? Now you provide the ultimate sacrifice; allowing yourself to be recycled, every part of you, so that the love which has flowed through that life with us can continue to flow into the lives of many, many more.