Another week, another funeral. This time it was for a retired history professor who was an authority on Sikhism. He had gone to Punjab as a missionary where intellectual doubts had ended his religion. Instead he found a life-long fascination and friendship with the Sikh community.

I remember walking past the noddy house where he lived in his last years. I spoke to his wife as they were going out. She explained that they were going to meet a friend at the airport. We don’t have any friends! he shouted from the car. Oh, yes, she said with a smile, I keep forgetting that. He had a very dry sense of humour.

Now the cancer has taken him. I will no longer see him sitting in the window of Everyday Gourmet as I’m on the way to the gym. He’s no longer there. Mi alashiya, shantih, shantih, shantih.

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