Thursday, June 29, 2017
Death and Espresso
I spotted this tiny cemetery shortly after I moved to New Hampshire. It's in Portsmouth, right on Route 1, a major artery for this state. It was right outside of a Taco Bell, and the Taco Bell had seen better days.I remember thinking how sad it was: we spend a finite number of years on Earth, we work hard, hopefully we have a decent life, and when we finally shuffle off this mortal coil, we end up. . .within view of stoners getting their late night snacks.
That Taco Bell has since closed, and now the building is a Starbucks. Maybe that sounds nicer than a Taco Bell, but it still makes an odd picture; people going through the drive thru, sipping coffee (or those stupid unicorn concoctions) and rushing off to another destination while just a few feet away, are reminders that we're all living on borrowed time.
Anyways, I decided that I wanted to find out more about this tiny resting place, so I stopped there one morning. It does have an official name: the Whidden Graveyard.
Whidden is an old New Hampshire name, and this little graveyard is a family plot. According to my research, the name was first recorded in this state in 1662
Most of the headstones are in nice shape, either because they have been maintained or replaced. There was only one that I wasn't able to read. And the Whidden name must come with good stock, because most of the people laid to rest there had long lives.
I chuckled when I saw this stone, because when I first looked at it, I thought it was flipping me off:
But I guess it's just pointing the way most of us hope to go.