Goodbye my Friend.

This morning Gilly messaged me with the news of Christine’s passing. As I went to her blog to read Stuart’s post I was not surprised to find the tears rolling down my cheeks.

Friendships come to us so unexpectedly at times. We might be sitting in a Chinese restaurant when it walks in, in the shape of another 17 year old. It can happen at a writers’ group when a smile across a cup of coffee cements it then and there for life. My friendship with Christine happened over the internet. One day I opened up my comments and there she was.

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2011…the year I started blogging. As I progressed further, so did Christine. Time and time again she took me home. When I would visit her blog there would always be some sense in me that was awakened. Her photos let me smell the grasses that lined the dunes of the beaches she walked. I could taste the salt spray that the sea breezes left on my lips as she caught a sea bird riding the air currents over blue waves. I could feel the softness of the petals as Christine brought me closer to the flowers in her garden or on her many walks around the land I still call home.

Her visits and comments so often brought a smile. Some were cause for reflection.

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I have read…though not yet commented on some wonderful tributes that have been written for Christine. It is not that I don’t want to…I just can’t yet for some reason.

I know that today…when I speak to some friends here of my sadness, my sense of loss…they will not understand.

We do not always need the physical presence of someone to feel the pull of friendship, the camaraderie of interests or of having shared roots of heritage.

For them blogging is an artificial world.

For me it is the world coming to me. It is what allows me the great joy of finding people to enlighten me, to make me laugh, to make me cry…to connect with on so many different levels.

Christine did all that and more in the three years I have known her. I will miss her wonderful photography. I will miss her joy in her life. I will miss her wise words. I will miss Christine.

I am grateful for the chance to have had her in my life…fleetingly, from afar, but most definitely a presence. I wish I had had the chance to meet her in person…but I met her spirit. How lucky am I.

Perhaps it is fitting that when I checked my comments this morning…the very last comment on the blog is from Christine.

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Farewell Christine. You will be missed.

Invocation – Rod McKuen

It may happen
that in some hidden
middle night

you’ll rise up
and come to me
in solitude or silence.

We will meet
as we have met
on a train or at the end
of some new train of thought.



  1. I am sorry for the loss of such an important person in your life. ((hugs))

    Your description of the blogging world is perfect, it is more than just words on a screen. For better and sometimes worse.


  2. My heart has been heavy all day too. Blogging friends may be in the virtual world, but they are real friends here on WordPress and in our hearts. People who have not had this experience don’t understand, you’re right. We have all suffered a great loss, and I think there are a lot of people grieving today.
    Hugs to you my friend.


    1. Very true Angeline. The grief is real. I wish sometimes I could make others understand that…then I let it go and am grateful for all of you out there who do, and who share it with me, comfort me, and then lift me back up.


  3. Well said, Jo. The suddenness of Christine’s death was is quite shocking, but what shocked me more, at first, was the feeling of dread I felt when I saw the title on a post under Christine’s gravatar – What’s this? It can’t be … Then the tears and sadness, of feeling shattered and so sad for a friend I’ve talked to every day since I met her here in our world of shared humanity.


    1. I felt the same Meridith. When I grasped from Gilly what had happened I felt sick. Stuart’s post had me completely undone. I am stunned at his thoughtfulness in letting us know. No wonder she loved him.


  4. So sorry to hear of the passing of Christine, a much-loved and respected member of our blogging community here. Even though most of us here have never met her in person, her loss will be greatly felt; a friend is a friend whether it be virtual or in real time, and the grief is just as real.
    Hugs to you Jo.


  5. Hi there, Jo, I didn’t know Christine either but you’ve captured what it’s like – here in the blogging world. Despite what the nay sayers might think we bloggers are all, to greater or lesser degrees, part of a long epistolary tradition. (Did you ever read 84 Charing Cross Road?) And we build relationships we care about. Hugs to you.


    1. No Jill I haven’t read it but I will look at getting it on my kindle. Non-bloggers will never understand the depth of friendship that can be formed on here…yet when you look back, isn’t that exactly what penfriends did. I had a penfriend when I was younger and I see that as being very similar to blogging, only the circle of people you touch is wider and therefore more wonderful.


  6. SIGH…blogging friends DO touch our lives…Non-bloggers don’t get that. There have been so many times that blogging friends (like you, JO), keep me going when people in “real” life are just going along their merry way oblivious to my sorrows…sorry for your loss…and the loss to the blogging community.


    1. I have felt like that too at times Sue. My ‘blogging’ friends seem to reach out when others are so busy. Like when I lost Crash…I was overwhelmed at the generosity of spirit I got back from everyone on here…helping me through it…sharing their own stories…lifting my spirit. It meant and means the world to me still.


  7. I had a conversation with her on her blog that evening Jo, asked her if she was feeling better and she responded by saying yes, she had actually ventured out and had a lovely day!! Stuart’s message was like a punch in the gut the next morning. I cannot bear to think of what it must be like for her family.


    1. I can not imagine how her family must feel. To lose such a delightful soul so suddenly. I am so glad she had her trip and her time with family before this happened. I hope that gives them some solace in the coming days.


  8. …and how fortunate for me that both you AND Christine changed from “virtual” friends I had met through blogging, to REAL-LIFE friends after we had met.

    I’m so fortunate to have met both of you. Happy memories 🙂


    1. it is so important that when chance offers we grab it Marianne. I am so thankful for having met you and Michael and knowing that the step over from virtual was so easy and so wonderful.


  9. You expressed it so well, Jo. She was VERY real to me, though I never met her. I’m going to return to her blog tonight for another look at some of her lovely posts. I don’t know how long WP will keep the blog open. She’s gone but so many of us will not forget her.
    What a heartbreak for the family.


  10. your inclusion of Christine’s comments invokes her presence and the loss of her so acutely – even though we only knew her virtually, we rightfully mourn


  11. I’ve been seeing posts or reposts about Christine’s passing. It has hit me like a ton of bricks. I did not follow Christine. Although, I did come across a comment or visit from her. This would always prompt me to visit her.
    I’m pleased I did. She was a lost soul in our neighborhood. On her blog, a per on who she though would merit what she connected to. I hope she has found a merritous


  12. Christine was a very special person and you have given her such a lovely tribute Jo. I was so shocked to hear the news of her dying so suddenly, how fragile we all are, You have captured the spirit of blogging in this post. It is such a force for good in this fractured world. I often think all politicians and people in power should connect via WP to hear what their fellow humans all around the world are saying and thinking. I have been away from WP for a few weeks, travelling, but now I am back house sitting for Christine’s son and daughter in law and saddened that I will not get to meet Christine as I had been looking forward to.


    1. Oh wow…you are house-sitting for her family. It is a shame that you missed meeting her. We need to remember how quickly it can all disappear, and never leave words unsaid, or actions undone. Life is so fleeting, so fragile…we need to treat it with respect.


      1. Christine’s family are very caring people too. I was so sad to miss meeting Christine, she is one of those special people. I agree Jo, never take each day for granted.


  13. Dear Jo, when you posted this I couldn’t bear to comment. I still think of Christine every day and even now I have tears, but also overwhelming joy and gratitude for having known her. Beautifully written Jo, thank you.
    We are so lucky aren’t we ?
    With love, G.


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