It’s a gorgeous sunny day in London so I don’t want to spoil the mood but I’ve learned of three deaths today.
A young man was shot and killed in my neighbourhood last night and a distant uncle whom I rarely saw, but whose brother and wife I know well, passed on Friday after 15 years of serious health problems. The third person was the very lovely George who died just short of his 75th birthday on Monday morning.
George and I met one Summer day a few years ago when he crossed my path totally randomly as I was leaving my then office near tourist hotspot Piccadilly Circus. George was visiting London with his son-in-law Marc and they’d somehow got separated. He was totally lost. George had no phone on him and couldn’t remember where he was staying.
As I was trying to figure out what to do, I learned about George’s life story. He was a very chatty, genuine and warm man so I felt like I’d known him for years even though we’d only just met.
As a younger man, he worked in a fancy bank in New York. George was a true banker, quite unlike the persona we’ve got used to hearing about since our financial institutions began crumbling. When customers died, George was the only one trusted to physically return people’s valuables back to their families. He knew how to sensitively and properly handle people when difficulties arose (as they nearly always do) in inheritance matters.
George mentioned meeting Jackie Kennedy when she came in with items to deposit. He was sweetly star struck rather than showing off. It was evident he treated all his customers with care and respect, whoever they were. He was a very down-to-earth kind of guy.
Is this the kind of banking we’ll begin to return to once Uranus enters earth sign Taurus in just over a week on 15th May? Game-changing Uranus’ imminent arrival in the sign of tangible wealth promises to shake up our relationship to money and possessions over the next seven years. I can’t imagine a better role model than George for any bankers looking to restore their reputation.
Master storyteller George loved his job. Still, the story he most wanted to tell me was the one about his beloved Mary. He spoke very proudly of his wife, a feisty, splendid, red-haired Irish woman. Since she had recently died, George said he didn’t know what to do with himself. I got the clear impression that Mary wore the trousers and he really missed the direction she gave him. It was very moving to witness how much he loved her and so sad that they were no longer together. After London, George and Marc were due to visit one of Mary’s relatives in Scotland.
To cut a long story short, I called George’s daughter back home in New York to find out where he was staying and then took him to his hotel. Marc was very relieved to be reunited with his father-in law (and he was spared having to tell his wife that he’d lost her father).
That evening, we all went out for a lovely Italian meal. The next day we went on a boat trip on the Thames to Greenwich. The weather was just like it is today and we had a lovely time. London in the sunshine is fabulous!
Just earlier today I was thinking about visiting Greenwich by boat again. Only a few hours later I heard the sad news of George’s passing.
George shone brightly like the sun, even when he was sad and lost. He was delightful, hilarious company and a true gem of a gentleman. I hope he’s together again with the magnificent Mary, and being bossed about by her, just as he wanted.
Rest in peace dear George, Uncle Kishore, the young man whose life was tragically cut short - and everyone else who is no longer here to enjoy the glorious sunshine.