Death has a funny way of reminding us of life. Reporting the death of extraordinary pipers and drummers is, as I have said before, the hardest thing about this, but it’s also one of the most important. It’s all the more difficult when it’s someone I was fortunate enough actually to know.
The end of any year is bittersweet. We look back on the best and worst of the 12 months past, and we look forward with optimism to what’s to come. Inevitably, there will be bad and sad news that we wish wouldn’t happen, so we try to block those thoughts.
I look at my own piping times and feel fortunate to be able to say that I knew that now-gone person. I heard that now-defunct band when it was at its peak. I remember when that now-classic tune first debuted. At the risk of being maudlin or morose, these reflective thoughts only increase as one ages. We can consider them as dreaded reminders of our own mortality, or we can revel in the people, the experiences, the music as highlights of living.
Here’s to a 2012 full of the unexpectedly meaningful and memorable.