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I have never had the pleasure of meeting Larry in person, but I miss him, now that he’s gone.

I didn’t know him that well, and our series of encounters came through Facebook messenger. Over a period of a year or so, sending messages back and forth, here and there. A series of quiet and unassuming pieces of conversation, in spurts and flashes.

We didn’t chat for long, or often, for that matter, and sometimes about nothing in particular, but as I write, I really miss him.

I am writing this post because I want to remember Larry, and everyone else like him, I happen to meet along the way, in this seemingly trivial life of happenchance.

We met through a magnificent friend of ours, who connected us, because we both loved music. She is always connecting people. She’s really good at it. A sort of non-romantic match maker par excellence.

Larry was a bit older than me, and for this reason some people would probably question his deep but youthful aspiration to be a musician, which suited me just fine. We were a great pair, because I like to think of myself as an aging, but aspiring writer and photographer.

Larry and I blended well.

I told him he needed to record his music. That most people go to the grave with their song still in them. He huffed and puffed that he didn’t have the right equipment. That he didn’t have enough courage or time. I told him that there was no such thing as the right equipment and that courage comes to those who dare to leap into the moment, and right now, is always the perfect time.

He agreed.

But life crept, as it always does, at its seemingly slow and petty pace, and so he went to his grave with his song unsung.

As sad as it is that the world will never hear his music, I am thankful and grateful, that we had a chance to share a few moments together.

He admired my concert photos I would post from time to time and he encouraged me to keep making more, telling me that I had a good eye for things.

I don’t really know what his voice sounded like, but I sometimes think I can hear it, when I am by the concert stage, in the pit, half blinded by the colourful lights, and ready to pursue the perfect frame of digital film.

I wish Larry and I had some more time. He died so suddenly.

I hope he finds some much-needed rest and I will have a few choice words for him, if he doesn’t finish his music, his magnum opus, because I still want to hear it someday.

Not for a while though, I have my own music to write.

Thank-you Larry, for teaching me an important lesson about what it means to be human. Something that I won’t soon forget.

I learned from you, that it doesn’t take much to truly connect with anyone. It just takes a little smidge of effort and a tiny pinch of time.

The fact that there are so many lonely people in the world, is truly sad and unnecessary.

Too many people suffer in silence. Too many of us are desperately disconnected from one another. We sit all alone. Battered by our own cruel voices of discouragement. At a time in human history, when human connection is not only possible, but available everywhere, and at every turn.

I hope that during this magical, but dark time of year, you embrace the ones you love. Tell them love them and explain what they mean to you. Give them the best gift you can. The gift of time. Time with you. Undisturbed. Undistracted.

Present.

I also hope you have a chance to smile at a stranger. A chance to exchange a few courteous words with those which fate binds you with. Even the cranky ones.

Come to think of it, especially the cranky ones.

Remember that it’s never the grand gestures that truly matter. They just happen to be what we remember the most.

But sometimes.

Sometimes. The little things. Those seemingly insignificant forgettable words, happen to mean more, because they truly connect us.

They carry within them, the true spirit of living.

The true spirit of being human.