I’ve just spent the better part of two days trying to come up with the right words to express how I feel about losing Rob to lung cancer. He was the best, and I owe him so much. But for now, those words just are not coming together.
So taking my lead from Leslie and a quote that she published from one of Rob’s favorite books. Here is a passage from the one and only book Rob ever recommended to me.
Joseph Conrad’s Short Story – “Youth”. The ending was powerful then, and perhaps more so now…
“Ah! The good old time–the good old time. Youth and the sea. Glamour
and the sea! The good, strong sea, the salt, bitter sea, that could
whisper to you and roar at you and knock your breath out of you.”
He drank again.
“By all that’s wonderful, it is the sea, I believe, the sea itself–or
is it youth alone? Who can tell? But you here–you all had something out of life:
money, love– whatever one gets on shore–and, tell me, wasn’t that
the best time, that time when we were young at sea; young and had
nothing, on the sea that gives nothing, except hard knocks–and
sometimes a chance to feel your strength–that only–what you all regret?”
And we all nodded at him: the man of finance, the man of accounts, the
man of law, we all nodded at him over the polished table that like a
still sheet of brown water reflected our faces, lined, wrinkled; our
faces marked by toil, by deceptions, by success, by love; our weary
eyes looking still, looking always, looking anxiously for something
out of life, that while it is expected is already gone–has passed
unseen, in a sigh, in a flash–together with the youth, with the
strength, with the romance of illusions.