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scattering lockdown

Lockdown, Walks and Scattering

I think most people will consider this third lockdown at best tedious and depressing. However it did mean the enforced circumference of activity meant that I have gone out and explored my locality more enjoying the joys on the doorstep. I am relatively fortunate that we are base on the edge of Dartmoor, with all its wild loveliness.

It occurred to me whilst on one of the these walks that I was connecting with this environment more and more, finding hidden spots or less trodden paths. It made me happy, not only to see this place in a new light but to appreciate more subtle aspects of the environment, you might say we bonded (well okay I bonded).

Each walk I found new views, new plants, new hidey holes and rocky outcrops, sometimes even new wildlife. And this all got me I wondering about where people choose to scatter their ashes (well I would wouldn’t I?!). The academics talk about people scattering to create an environment of memory, I suppose unbreakable bond with that place. Well, I actually thought they could also be doing it there because it is just convenient but that is bye-the-bye. So, let me rephrase that: people who truly care and consider where to scatter will wish to make a bond, whether that is renewing an old bond – a favourite holiday location or creating a new one like where that loved one grew up, is not so important.

What is certain is once the ashes are scattered at a certain place, that it will be seared on the memory, even if some of the detail or even the precise location get forgotten.

I suppose it begs many questions: should the place we are scattered be the choice of the deceased or that of those left behind, I guess that is answered if a person left their last wishes. But generally, they don’t. So, it is usually left to those left behind. With that in mind then I would make a plea, consider your choice carefully as you can’t undo it. I don’t mean paralyse yourself through fear of getting it wrong, just a few ticks on a checklist

  • Do I want to come back to this spot – if so, am I able?
  • What will happen to this place in the future, is it likely to always be the same?
  • If scattering a partner consider whether you want to be with them when your time comes and if you do, is the place you have selected suitable?
  • Do you want all their ashes there, do you want to keep some back to be near you?
  • Do others in their life need to ashes to memorialise in their way and am I okay with that?

I could go on, basically take your time – mull it over and you will know when it’s time to act.


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