Inviting Interruptions


My husband and I were running late for our weekend getaway. After carrying bag after bag and organic veggie after veggie to the car, it was time to go. We locked the door, turned back around ready to drive off but out of nowhere a huge train of cars had materialized. 

It was a funeral procession. The hearse and the entire caravan of cars had stopped just a few feet in front of our car, near the home of an older gentleman who had passed away down the street a few days ago. 

There was a moment, a decision point I can clearly remember: do we try to carefully U-turn our way out of here and politely navigate through this procession? We were late after all. Do we go on a walk to get a cup of coffee? Or, do we pause and watch how this all unfolds. 

We decided to pause. And what happened next was one of the most beautiful moments I've witnessed in a long time.

The hearse stopped. The driver got out, carefully swung the back doors open, revealing the beautiful white coffin within. It was unclear what was happening until we noticed, standing on the sidewalk just in front of us was a trumpet player. This musician started to play a beautiful song, in front of this man's old house, with the doors of the hearse swung open so he could hear the music, feel the autumn breeze, and bear witness to the goodbye taking place in front of his old home.

It was beyond moving.  The caravan of cars had also all paused, drivers and passengers alike had stepped out of their vehicles to hear this goodbye. This bittersweet send off - a goodbye to the shells of life - a home, a body - and a nod to the transition beyond. 

And then, just like that, it was over. The song ended, the trumpet player seemingly apparated, the doors of the hearse were carefully closed, and one by one the cars proceeded off. As the cars drove by, however, there was one last encore. Each car honked as it drove by this man's home. A cacophony of sound, emotion, sadness and ultimately, celebration. 

As tears streamed down my face I thought, perhaps in life, there is no such thing as an interruption after all.