Hospice Appeal: Last Night of the Proms


Ladies and Gentlemen. Thank you and Good afternoon.

My name is Ed Lunnon and I am a patient cared for by the St Francis Hospice of Port Elizabeth.

Today, we witness the best of the human condition, through song and music and dance.

Let’s give Richard and all the artistes a very warm round of applause.

But, ladies and gentlemen, just as we witness the best of the human condition, we are all only too aware of the worst of the human condition – the elephant in this room:

death through cancer, TB, HIV/AIDS, and Motor Neurone and other degenerative brain diseases.

Just a few months ago, we witnessed the very public suffering, death and funeral of rugby Springbok Joost van der Westhuizen who had motor neurone disease.

Let’s see by show of hands … How many of you have been touched personally, or have had a family member or close friend touched by one of these illnesses in the twelve months that have elapsed since we attended the last Last night of the proms?

Yes, sometimes it takes the worst of the human condition to draw out the best of the human condition in us … That of generosity, compassion, love and charity towards our fellow human beings.

So, in these few minutes, I would appeal to you to help the Port Elizabeth St Francis Hospice to help us, who battle the ravages of these illnesses, which for you may be just a name, but for us, is our reality each and every day of our limited lives.

I challenge you and you and you to empty your purses and pockets as you leave this hall tonight and to fill the coffers of the Hospice placed at the various exits.

This past year it was your parent, your spouse, your sibling, your child or your friend.

This coming year, it may be your very self!

Remember, these diseases spare no-one .

May I thank you in advance for your kind generosity?

Baie dankie, muchas gracias, merci, enkosi kakhulu , thank you very much.

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Another New Year: 2017


Ill 10 years 4 months | Physical Advantage CBD / Mental Advantage CBD

(C) 2017 Edward C Lunnon

I have not written or spoken for a long while now. Let me not try and find any reason for this other than just being absolutely forthright. I have been struggling to keep the pieces together.

So much has happened in the last few months and I have not been able to stay on top of it.

Mentally, things are going awry. Physically, my body is taking a pounding. Psychologically, I am not coping. Emotionally, I am in a dark space.

So, as we enter the second week of the new year of 2017, please keep me in your thought and prayers. Let’s hope that it will be a better one than the previous year. 

I need to get back on top, and I will. I promised myself right in the beginning of this journey that I would not let it overtake me. I won’t!

So watch out … I will be back soon and fill you in and what has been happening!

May it be a Happy New Year for us all.

All Things Must Pass*

(c) The Daily Zen / Ed C Lunnon 2016

Ill 10 years 1 month |Physical: Adv CBD / Mental: Adv Cbd

mustpass

“No matter how bad a state of mind you may get into, if you keep strong and hold out, eventually the floating clouds must vanish and the withering wind must cease.”
Dōgen

Feeling good about your life? It will pass. Feeling miserable? That will pass too. Meditation teaches us not to cling to good thoughts or bad, but instead to be undiscriminating and let all thoughts go by. This teaches us the power and inevitability of transience. Everything is in a perpetual state of coming and going. The more you resist this, the more it hurts.

When we are in a good place, we cling to feeling good. We set expectations higher and higher until nothing can match them, thus forcing us into a not-so-good place. When we are in a bad place, we fantasize so much about the good that we neglect devoting adequate energy to the moment, the very energy required to lift ourselves out of the funk.

The masters believed enlightenment to come suddenly out of nowhere, like a lightning strike. It hits for a bit and then also passes. When we sit and meditate, sometimes we cling to various thoughts or expectations. This is still egotistical thinking and won’t help us in our practice. But when we truly sit and focus only on the breath, letting everything pass by, moments of terrific lucidity occur. They only come about when we aren’t searching for them.

Thoreau said, “Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you; but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder.” This passage has stuck with me since I read it years ago. We find contentment when we are too immersed in diligent living to waste time searching around for it. Life is the wellspring for contentment, not the other way around. You must build a life of mindful virtue if you want to truly feel peace.

View story at Medium.com

 

 

 

Investment Club


Last night, Wednesday 5 July 2016, the day after Pam’s passing, we met at 29 Prospect Road, Walmer, the home of the Thomsons.

The we, this time, being the Lunnons (with Sean and Phillip), the Stapletons, Lindsay Scholtz, and the Thomsons (sans Pam but with Greg, Lynn, and her boyfriend Peter).

The we are  also the remnants of our Investment Club – the Lunnons, Scholtz’s, the Stapletons and the Thomsons.

Many years ago, the four families met monthly at each other’s homes.We started off as eight people and ended as sixteen, each couple adding two more children to the group.

Some would say that we added more people than we did money. On that score, each coupled invested R100 per month and I invested the money, with the ultimate goal of cashing in the investments and going on a world tour.

However, we soon realized we were only dreaming! So, annually, we cashed in our fortune and spent the December long weekend away. We did Katberg, Plett, Keurbooms, East London, Knysna, Blanco, Hogsback, …

Last night, we cried and laughed. We spoke about Pam and remembered her in all her ways, and we cried.

We spoke about our Investment Club and remembered all our ways and we laughed.

It struck me how we and our children had learned so much from both. We certainly had not hit the jackpot with our investments, but we had achieved far more in the education of our children.

Stapes later wrote:

“I am touched … I touched … I was touched.

We all touched. What a lively, lovely evening with the Thommos.”

Still later, he said

“Yesterday, with heavy  head, heart and feet, I threaded through the day.

But time invested with friends, is time well spent,

and I heard a bird, singing in the Heavens.”

Yes, for the first time maybe, I realized just what the meaning of our Investment Club really was.

I realized just how much our children learn and had learned from us.

I realized just how much Pam was loved and the example she set both in our own kids and also in the pupils she had taught over the years.

So, at the end of the old chapter and the beginning of the new,

We remember that money is not our only investment.

We remember the value of friends.

We remember the meaning of life and the permanence of death in this world.

We remember the memories.

And whilst we say to Tommo, thank you for the music, we also say to Pammie

Thank you, Pammie, thank you for the memories.

The Last Supper


Ill 9 years 10 months / Advantage Mental CBD : Physical CBD

Some few weeks ago, as we often used to do many, many years ago, we gathered for supper at 29 Prospect Road, Walmer.

The we being the Lunnons, the Ogilvies, the Mackenzies and the Thomsons. 

29 Prospect Road is the home of the Thomson’s.

In days gone past, we used to meet there almost weekly, sometimes by ourselves and sometimes in far larger groups. The Tiger’s Arms did brisk business! On the odd occasion, we even managed to get the owner and resident singer to haul out his guitar and entertain us.

Tommo, after all, was according to one fan at the Holiday Inn in East London, the “best in Africa”!

The hospitality here was also top-notch, on a par with the Ogilvie’s in Villiers Road. As a bachelor, if I didn’t make it to Villiers Rd, then often I used to sleep over in the guest room in Prospect! The waking-up scenario just used to change!

Anyway, that was the past and this was the present. In our conversation, though, the present did take up much of that past. We reminisced, we laughed, we joked, we drank, we ate.

Tommo has become a chef par excellence, and with Pammie not well, his culinary skills have been even more tested!

It was like “the good old days”. We wined and dined.

Just a little bit slower, little bit fatter, little bit greyer, little bit tireder ….and we spoke about retirement, something we didn’t even think about in those days of yore.

When we left this time, we didn’t have to worry about kids in carry cots, or toys and baby bottles… Just empty baskets and empty bottles!

When we left this time, we didn’t think that it was almost time up, that we were running out of time, that the sands of time were passing us by, and that this would be the last time.

Yes, with Pammie, when we left this time, it was our last time …it was to be Our Last Supper!

……

Last night, we met at 29 Prospect Road for supper yet again. It is the beginning of a new time, but we will not forget the old time. We said Grace and drank a toast to Pamela.

Cheers!


Thank you for the Thomson’s 


Ill 9 years 9 months … Adv CBD

Today, I attended Neil and Pam Thomson’s retirement farewell at The Grey.

Neil has taught there  for forty years and Pam some thirty years.

I first met Tommo in Stellenbosch in the late 1970’s when I was a student and he was singing at Die Akker.

Then we taught together at Grey until I left teaching in 1988. As a young, irresponsible and wayward youngster, I spent many evenings drinking in the “Tiger’s Arms” and sleeping in Pammie’s guest room.

We celebrated many occasions around and under the Thomson’s dining table. Pam, forever the lady, endured our wanting behavior with her customary “goodness gracious”!

Tommo sang at our wedding at St Albans Prison.

He sang at many PE weddings, corporates functions, restaurants,  El Cid, 21st parties and other occasions around the world.  After all, he was “the best in Africa”.

Together with the Thomson’s, the Scholtz’s and the Stapleton’s, we continued our Investment Club and our friendships.

Pera has remained Tommo’s private hairdresser and has witnessed the colour change from pepper to grey to white!

Yes, we have been colleagues and friends. We have celebrated the ups and cried through the downs.

We have lived life together.

It’s been a long and winding road, and continues to be so.

Thank you, the Thomson’s , for the music, the hospitality, the ride and above all, the friendship.

Life has thrown it all at us. But we shall overcome.

Orlando Mass Shootings: Breaking News

As at Sunday morning EST, 50 people killed 53 injured in a mass shooting in a Orlando Fl USA night club.

This makes it the deadliest massacre on American soil.

Gunman had an assault rifle and a handgun.

He was killed in crossfire.

Blood donors urgently needed.

Shooter identified as Omar Saddiqui Mateen – his parents born in Afghanistan.

More news to come.