Monday, 28 May 2012

Jack, Alexis and Rack of Lamb

Tuesday my uncle Jack McDonald's life will be commemorated at a funeral service in Walla Walla, WA where he was born.  He was 83 when he died last week, leaving three children, eight grandchildren, his wife of more than 60 years Margy and many, many friends.

He was my mother's youngest sibling and only brother.  He was my first adult friend--all my other aunts and uncles were parents too, and so their attitude was different from his.  He was young and dashing and took me to places like the county fair with his buddies.  When he and Margy married, their wedding and romance seemed like a fairy tale come true.

When I grew up I didn't see him much, but once when Lee and I were undergraduates at Berkeley he visited San Francisco on business and took us to the first top class restaurant I'd ever eaten in.  Alexis on Nob Hill had a great wine list and specialized in such amazing dishes as rack of lamb: it was a meal I've never forgotten.

Unfortunately I won't be there tomorrow to help celebrate his life.  But on Saturday we ate in a Montreal restaurant which, while not as swank as Alexis, was every bit as good.  Rack of lamb was on the menu and we ate it and remembered Jack.

Obviously there are many ways of honouring someone, and I think Jack, a man who loved good food, drink and companionship, would understand what we were doing.

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