Yesterday, I went to the funeral of my old boss. He was my first base Inspector when I was posted onto Traffic division and was a real decent nice guy. His funeral is not the point of this post, because although any funeral is a sad occasion, in his case he was suffering parkinsons and cancer and was 79 and had been in a hospice for a while, and sometimes it is kinder to let them go so that you can remember people as they were in their prime not as they were at the end.
I was fortunate that the best 2 Inspectors I ever served under were both Traffic inspectors. The one who passed away and Terry, my second base inspector.
No, the point I was going to make, is that, when you have many years in the same job, you develop friendships and comaraderie that goes well beyond any working relationship, and as a Traffic Policeman, that was certainly very true. We were a close knit team who would back each other up at a drop of a hat, unlike many Policemen these days who have no real interest other than to be authoritarian power junkies although there are exceptions to the rule.
Anyway, what brought the time issue home, was that when I attended my first funeral after I retired, there were about 50 of us (serving and retired) from the Southern Traffic Area of Thames Valley Police. We always consider ourselves family, and even those of us who had retired were still considered part of the family.
Yesterday, there were about 20 of us, and it was at this point you realise that time is catching up as the group gets smaller. I still remember many as younger men in their 30’s, 40’s maybe 50’s, just as they remember me as a young 20 something, and then the penny drops, they are nw in their 70’s and 80’s and I am late 50’s.
We are no longer the young people we remember, we are middle aged or old men and then you start wondering whose funeral we will be attending next.
Then yesterday, there I was talking to someone thinking to myself, the face looks familiar, I recognise the voice, but who the [email protected] are you? And then the penny drops. In the cae of yesterday, it was my old Traffic Admin Sgt. I have not seen hom for over 10 years.
I can still remember incidents, people and dates like it was yesterday. But the memories and pictures in my head don’t match the reality.
Hence my title, isn’t time weird. Maybe it is just a sign that we are all getting older…
On the plus side, a funeral is always a good opportunity to catch up and have a good natter.