Given the last two weeks, it's only fitting that my return to work occurs amidst a flurry of funerals (I'd like to take this opportunity to publicly thank everyone in the office who helped cover my work whilst I was away, all the wonderful staff at St Columcille's hospital in Loughlinstown who helped Dad, and those who came to the funeral last week. You've been a great support).
Natasha Richardson's funeral took place yesterday in St Peter's Episcopal Church in Millbrook (upstate New York, where she lived with Liam Neeson and their two young sons). Those in attendance included Ralph Fiennes, Alan Rickman and Laura Linney, while Sarah Jessica Parker, Mathew Broderick, Julianna Margulies and Ethan Hawke were present for the actress's wake at the American Irish Historical Society on Friday night. Richardson passed away after suffering a blow to the head while skiing the prior weekend.
As for Jade Goody's funeral details, we might be left waiting for a while. Sources are today saying it's going to take nearly a fortnight to organise, such is the projected magnitude of the affair. According to (who else but) Max Clifford, it will be a "Jade Goody Production… Jade wanted a celebration of her life. It will be very much a Jade Goody Production with Jade doing her own thing her own way". Seemingly Jade wanted one of her bridesmaids to undertake the proceedings but she soon started interjecting: "Within a minute she was saying she didn’t want that and she did want this and how she wanted it to be. It will be a celebration, but of course there will be a lot of tears." The PR machine added: "After a church service the funeral cortege will process through Loughton - near her home in Upshire, Essex… the funeral would be a public celebration just as Jade had lived her life out in the public eye in the last seven years… The church will be full of friends and family and loved ones but I'm sure there will be other people lining the route and lots of other people that might want to go to the church to hear it hopefully relayed outside."
Stephen Fry was amongst the legions of souls passing on their condolences (via Twitter): "Jade lived life under a magnifying glass. Magnifying glasses magnify (obviously) but they distort and they burn. I suppose she was a kind of Princess Di from the wrong side of the tracks."