A old naval cemetery overlooking the Indian Ocean in Simon’s Town South Africa.
I dipped my toes in the warm water, and thought “I hope I did my best while I was here.” I waded out until no one was going to come and get me, to old or far to care. I tried to summon up a prayer or courage as I went under, a request to place my remains on a hillside of endless summer. I’ll leave this trail of a life behind me when I go, and sleep beneath a stone for all to know. A marker in the grass, a testament to my worth, my final resting place, the old burying grounds in Seaforth.
This 200 year old cemetery was established in 1813 in Simon’s Town South Africa, back when there was a British Naval Port based there. The Royal Navy is long gone, but their graves remain. The grounds were both moderately cared for and moderately over grown at the same time. Swaying grass, chipped and toppled stones, weathered and faded writing. Yet, the intricate etchings of anchor and roses, lovingly made, exist in exquisite condition as those made yesterday. Despite its beautiful location, a windswept hillside over looking the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, its actually quite a sad place when attention is paid to detail. Graves of young service men, 20, 17, 13, all dead not from war but accidents: drownings, ship sinkings, training exercises. I suppose an indication of the era and the progress we’ve made since. Still, for the fallen, there are worse places to lay your remains.