You don't know how much you care about someone till they are definitely not around anymore.
We will miss the unspoken glances, the gestures that said a thousand words, the common framework and language of a shared history, background, familiarity and outlook. I gave him the autographs of the FA Cup Winners of 1958, Nottingham Forest. I'd had them since I was about 11, but I worked out that he wanted them more. They made a nice Christmas present in I think 1998.
We were both born in Nottinghamshire in the same year, and had shared many similar childhood experiences, the clothes of the time, the music, the customs and standards of our parents, Some of his sayings and speech mannerisms have crept into our language, can't imagine they'll readily recede, "are you proud that you ....." , "new shoes, now why did you pick them?", "my mission? to devour every prawn in the world". Vindaloo or not. He habitually questioned my ingredients when cooking. "Tomatoes? Too much tomato". . Though he always eat it, and seconds. "Oh I say" and other trivia from Test Match Special. He taught me the basics of drumming, though he was actually teaching my son Ben, (around 1983) I sat in the lessons and watched and listened. He introduced me to lots of music I would have instinctively rejected. His eclectic tastes still guide my ears, though not always comfortably. I continue to struggle with some of the difficult stuff, including his recent Zaum work, though oddly very accessible in live performance.
This is all too sad. Loved you Steve. We will miss you.
Steve and May.