The Eleventh Hour
Too, too late
When I was a little girl I can remember my mom and sisters say,
"Mary if you don't hurry up you are going to be late."
My sister Sue would pop up
"She will probably be late for her own funeral."
"Oh," I said, "how can you be late for your own funeral. If you are not there how are they going to have a funeral?"
Every Sunday I heard the say thing.
"Mary, hurry up you are going to be late. Late for church, late for Sunday school and everything else."
Well I put up with that all my life.
It got so folks kept telling me to come 15 minutes earlier than the appointed time for something to begin.
When It came time for me to make my will I made sure every thing was in it, down to the time of day I wanted my funeral to be.
So when time for me to pass on to eternal life I had left definite directions as to how I wanted my funeral conducted and at what time I wanted it to be start.
"Being of sound mind and wit I leave all my worldly goods to my daughter Sally. I want to wear my handmade pink silk dress I made and I want to have all my diamonds on. I want my funeral to start at exactly 11:00 A.M. in the morning, and no one may ever change that."
Signed Mary Lowell
Witnessed by Elsie Wilson
Now my daughter Sally and I talked about this a lot. She knew it was in my will and she knew better than to do anything different.
"You know it is bad luck to go against a person's dying statement. Now Sally don't you let anyone make you change your mind."
I had told her this many a time.
"Okay mom," she would say," n0thing can make me change my mind."
Several years passed and Mary did pass away.
Sally did all the things her mom had asked for.
She had the pink dress to the morgue and made sure that he and the minister knew the service was to start at 11:00 A.M.
When Sally got to the funeral home the morning of the funeral, she walked into the room and there was no coffin in the appointed place.
She went to look for Mr. Reed the funeral director.
"Mr. Reed, where is my mother's coffin the funeral is supposed to start in one hour and all the flowers are arriving but where is the casket?" she pleaded.
"Well Miss Sally your momma's body won't be ready until 12:00, things did not go as I had planned and that is the best I can do."
"But I promised my mother her funeral would be at 11:00. What am I going to do? If I don't abide by her wishes it will be very bad luck for me."
"Sorry," said Mr. Reed.
What in the world was Sally going to do.
She went to him with an idea.
"Well, Mr. Reed, we could just push a coffin in there and have it closed and the funeral at 11:00 and no one would even know the difference."
"You mean have an empty coffin?"
Mr. Reed stammered.
"Well, I guess we could do that.
Pick out one and I will have Luther push it in there.
Oh my heavens I have never done this before."
So the funeral was held at 11:00 AM just as Mary had wanted, but true as she had been told about a million times, Mary was late for her own funeral.
In fact she wasn't even there at all.
After the service,Mr. Reed pushed the coffin back into the morgue and gently laid Mary into the coffin with her pretty pick dress on and shuck his head.
"Late for her own funeral.
Poor Sally worried the rest of her life when the bad luck would hit her.
I am grateful I can enjoy and laugh about writing about funerals.
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