I have now officially been to my first Catalan funeral.
The social pressure on the street has been mounting with each death. That sounds horribly morbid, but we live in the older part of town and there are quite a lot of seniors on our street. Indeed today's was the third funeral in a week.
Things I noticed, and a caveat.
I don't think I have ever been to a full-on Catholic funeral before, so some of these differences may be a function of religious differences.
Nobody spoke but the priest. No one. Weird. Impersonal too.
It was a full mass. People took communion. That seemed strange to me.
The casket came in on this wheel-y-bin kind of thing, like a massively overfilled shopping cart. That sounds odd and all, but that is what it looked like.
Every funeral I have been to the casket has either been there when the people arrived and stayed there till after they left, or it was carried in and out on people's shoulders. That said, I haven't been to all that many funerals.
People were WAY casually dressed. I did ask in advance, and I was not expected to wear all black, which I do in Canada....but.....but....
OK, I was told that wearing all black is old fashioned and that only the family would maybe wear black.
The adult sons of the man were not wearing ties. They had on striped shirts under their jackets. The children in the family were wearing regular, nice-ish clothes.
But, I am sorry, I know I sound horribly Victorian here, but WHO over the age of 16 wears jeans to a funeral of an old man.
Jeans and a checked shirt, a shabby jacket and whatever shoes seemed the comfiest to put on.
BIG cultural difference there, cause it seemed to be just fine. The man and I were talking about it, and some of these people did just come from work, but I have worn funeral clothes to work because I have to go to one. I was probably dressed more somberly than most, with brown linen pants, a black turtleneck, black jacket (fleecy, I would never have worn that in Canada, but the church is cold) black shoes, none too clean, plus a very small muted necklace, hair tied back.
The son I know well enough to attend the funeral has been a student of mine for several years and interestingly I warranted a double cheek-kiss, which not many folks were getting.
The man had been very ill. It is still, in many ways, sad.
I feel worst for his grandchildren. They are too young to recognise how ill he was, and they will miss him. He lived just a few doors down.
Tuesdays are long at the best of times.