Friday, March 16, 2007

Dear Scott

My friend Scott Pike died last weekend.

Our friends Cher and Milt were coming for the weekend and we were going to drive up the coast and have steemers and beer and lobster. But they knew Scott, too, and so they will attend the wake and funeral today and this weekend instead of coming to Boston. It's just as well... we're having a veritable blizzard!

Anyway, Scott wasn't a close friend or an "every day friend" that I conversed with regularly.
But he was friend enough that I thought of him regularly, even though I saw him only once a year, and only for the last few years at that. He would be there when we went to Muirfield for The Memorial, visiting our good friends Cher and Milt. He would bring his camera; I never really saw him using it, but it would always be there with him. He would sit quietly, watching everything, and every once in while he would speak. Quietly.

He and I hit it off right away. I guess I understand the "quietness" in people (even though some people think that I am not that quiet - not on the outside but on the inside there is a great "stillness" that I don't understand myself yet). And I guess he understood that there was that "stillness" somewhere inside of me. We would sit around, drinking beer, and talk about the camera and photographs and his travels and such.

He was 43 years old, and died (presumably) of a heart attack, after church, laying on the couch still in his church clothes. How ironic, I thought. He died already dressed for his funeral. Sometimes we are most prepared for something when we are the least aware of it.

The obit said that he was 43. He went to Wake Forest Law School. Huh? LAW SCHOOL? At Wake? I am from Winston-Salem and I got into Wake (my dad was a doctor, on the board, and taught at the medical school). And it turns out that his photography was more than a mere hobby. It was a passion. Hundred and hundreds of photos. More than you can go through. And there were lots of other things about him I wish I had known; we could have had so many discussions - about history, the books that he read and the places he traveled to.

The obit said he was loved and survived by parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews and cousins galore. But it failed to mention that he also left behind a group of friends who loved him for who he was and, in particular, a wannabee photographer who was greated impacted by their quiet discussions about the camera and photograhy in general.

Dear, Scott.
I barely knew you.
But I can feel your presence and see your smile and feel your bear hugs goodbye...even now.
Keep Paradise warm for us.
And when we get there, we will talk about the years in between and the time we didn't have together, and then move on to history and travel and more about the camera...

I will miss you.



Blogger Cheryl said...

I saw him alot more often than you and came away with the same thoughts. He was so damn quiet!!

11:48 AM  

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