The Aardvark Speaks : essence, effervescence, obscurity. Established 2002. A weblog by Horst Prillinger. ISSN 1726-5320

September 24, 2006


The town of Villach is host to an amazing number of tourists. I'm not particularly sure why, but the whole town was full of them last Saturday. Most of them seemed confused and lost as if they were in the wrong town, so maybe they were; or perhaps it just looked that way because they were only barely able to find their way through the thousands of leaflets, balloons and cuddly toys handed out by members of five political parties, all of which were still in desperate search for voters for next Sunday (but apparently not desperate enough not to leave at 12 noon sharp). I suppose the sheer number of tourists explains why a coffee and a Sachertorte are more expensive in Villach than they are in Vienna, which I hadn't really thought possible.

The town of Villach also has two Waldfriedhöfe (forest cemeteries), and if it hadn't been for a chain of minor coincidences, I would not have found out about the second one and thus would almost have ended up at the wrong one, missing my friend's funeral.

At the funeral I noticed that apparently it doesn't really matter how well you knew a person; you may still find that you grieve for them more than you thought you would, simply because they made a big enough impression on you at some point. It's also good to see that people who know somebody well enough can make sure that they leave in the same style and with the same dignity in which they lived. It's interesting to see who came and who didn't come, especially if as a visitor you find that there's nobody there that you know.

In moments like these I usually go all mushy and begin to wonder who will show up at my funeral, what they will say, what they think my style was. I wonder if it will matter, to me, or to someone else. I wonder if I should make arrangements about the script and the soundtrack, but I'm afraid there's not really a lot I can do about the audience.

Posted by Horst on September 24, 2006 11:16 PM to my so-called life | Tell-a-friend

Jann said on September 26, 2006 02:40 AM:

I agree absolutely that the impression someone has made on you is more important than how well you knew them. A couple of years ago I traveled more than halfway across the country to be able to attend the memorial service for a lady who had had a strong positive impact on me while I was a teenager. Although it could not be said that I knew her well, it was important for me to be able to tell her family in person that she had made a difference in my life, as well as in the lives of some people close to me.

dieter said on September 26, 2006 09:55 AM:

I would definitely come to your funeral. Only I am not sure whether I would learn about your death in time. So, being concerned about your audience, maybe you should leave behind a list of invitations.

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