Marina Cortês

Ticks of time: on Cosmology, Everest, and Ballet

George Colburn’s Irish Wake

July 3rd was one of the most magical days of my life. 

A group of humans coming from all over gathered in Walloon Lake, Michigan, in sadness for the loss, over 6 months ago, of a dear, dear friend. 

Not exactly the best of starts as magical days go… I anticipated an afternoon of hopeless sobbing and moping around miserably — with myself as the chair of the poor-sods sorry choir, mind.

And so it began, indeed. I was already howling as I paid the taxi driver on arrival. “Brilliant”, I thought, “I already have swollen eyes before even stepping in”. 

But, slowly, the room started filling with joy and glitter. It dawned on me that I was unexpectedly glimpsing bits of George in the glint in eye of his dear, dear friends, whom he so loved. 

These one-in-a-million humans that George chose over 8 decades on the planet, and were now coming together to support one other, were each, somehow, carrying a handful of golden dust. Something magical happened, which I have never seen before (and I have *seen* stuff).

Each handful of golden dust was a piece of George. With our longing and our shared love, we were slowly piecing George back together… Just like a puzzle.

Suddenly George was back in the room. There was no more sorrow, no more longing, just joy and sheer-sparkling eyes, so many beautiful stars that George collected in his lifetime. I have rarely seen so much beauty and love in the same room.

Now guess what: looking after us all was George’s beautiful muse, his 36 year-long life partner, Karen. George’s stunning Karen—the one most deserving to lead this unprecedented choir of wallowing sobs— was instead supporting us, gently holding us together with her sparkly fairy glue, when it should have been us, George’s friends, consoling his wife all along.

I have no words for what you did yesterday Karen McGauhey Fogle Colburn. Certainly have never seen anything like that in my life.

Magic is real. You took us to a fairy-tale world yesterday. You brought George Colburn back to us. Everyone felt it.

George Colburn

There is such beauty in life. There is such beauty in life. There is such beauty in life. You filled my heart with it.

For my friends who don’t know George Colburn here is his website. He interviewed all US presidents since Nixon (apart from Clinton, Karen told me)

We were working together on a documentary to save climate change, teaser-trailer is here.

Filmed and edited beautifully by the magic Dean Love, and produced by Chris Haws and George Colburn

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