Wednesday, 11 September 2019

On Rob Foot, some words by his sister and our friend, Helen

Dear Mandarins,

Today would have been Rob’s 50th birthday. There are things that I would like to say at Bentworth in a week or so, but might struggle, so am going to try to put it in writing now.

Had he still been with us, I’ve no idea where Rob would have been living nor what he would have been doing – but I’m as certain as I can be that a game of cricket would have featured somewhere as part of his celebrations. It is completely fitting therefore that we have the Mandarins v Alton game to look forward to in 10 days time.

17 years ago we drove away from Rob’s last game – Rob and me (pregnant with Gem) in the front, Jon, Kath and James in the back. Nobody spoke for a long time, then Billy Bragg’s New England came on the CD, Rob and I wound the windows down and sang very loudly. When the song finished, Rob’s words were... “God, I’m going to miss that lot.”

And the feeling’s completely mutual, I know. And nothing will change that. There is a big Rob-shaped hole.

James and Gemma don’t actually know what they’re missing out on – but I’d put money on the fact that Rob would have taken great delight in trying to score runs against Gemma, and would be desperate to get her out – but take huge pride in the fact that she was a National Cricket Champion. And I’d guess that he’d have done at least one triathlon, just to say that he had, have travelled from wherever he was to watch James represent GB in Switzerland last week. He’d also be trying to beat James’ Parkrun PB!!

But each of you, by being your normal, everyday, amazing selves, have managed to fill a small part of the hole Rob has left, and have shown James and Gem why the Mandarins were such a big part of Rob’s life, and continue to be important to all of us... You have all watched the children grow, taken an interest and shared in their successes. You have done this with no whistles and bells, perhaps without even realising what a difference you have made. You have done it just because you are lovely, kind and generous friends who were not only there for us 17 years ago, but have stayed with us ever since.

So thank you – and if over the course of the next day or so, you want to play New England very loudly, and sing along, you won’t be on your own (I’ll have it on repeat!!).

Helen x

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.