This weekend was the third anniversary of the death of our dear friend, Erv Doerksen. We drove up the TransCanada Highway through the Fraser Canyon, just past Lytton, and stopped beside the road where Erv's family has set up a modest memorial. It is at the edge of a pullout, directly across the highway from where Erv died. There is a cross, some flowers, and an engraved rubber placard with some beautiful words written about the circumstances that day, and about Erv.
Since we were there last, the Department of Highways has erected a massive set of netting and barricades to catch any falling rocks that might come down, thus preventing another tragedy that may befall some other driver on this beautiful road.
Just beyond the memorial, one can look over the edge of the bluff and see the railroad tracks below. While we were there, two full length trains powered their way westward.
I stood at the edge, looking down, admiring the river, almost at flood stage, and the powerful rapids, swirling around the huge submerged boulders in the river bed. I felt the warm breeze on my face, the hot sun on my back, and I inhaled the wonderful aroma of sage. This is truly a beautiful spot, but there was something else there. I could feel Erv. I realise that my mind was occupied with memories of him, our discussion was about Erv, and as I looked at the mountains around me, I again realised that this was the last sight that Erv saw with his eyes this side of Heaven. But still, it was as if Erv was saying to me, " As beautiful as this scene is, it is only a foretaste of what I am experiencing now. Observe, take it in, marvel at it, but do not hold too tightly to it, or to anything in this world. It is all fleeting."
I would have loved nothing better at that very moment than to sit with Erv, on the edge of that bluff, watch those trains go by, and have a deep conversation about hanging on. It would have been the thing to do were he there with me in person.