|On the day of Christmas Eve , Diane and I headed to nearby San Marcos, Texas, to do our semi-monthly laundry, passing along the way a small, well maintained cemetery adjacent to the roadside. We noticed as we passed, that almost all of the gravesites were marked with fresh plastic flowers as seems to be the custom here, and to be quite honest were very attractive.
One grave, however, immediately caught our eye. It, like the others ,was decorated with the same plastic flowers, but also had one of the helium filled Mylar balloons that can be purchased at most stores floating a foot or two above the headstone. While seeing a balloon in a cemetery was unusual, it would not have been so out of place if it was conveying a message like; "Mother", "Dad", or "We miss you Grandpa", or even "Happy Birthday Down There", or some other expression of loss or remembrance.
Not to be, as in this case, the balloon was bright yellow, and you guessed it, sported the all too familiar Smiley Face that we have grown to recognize immediately.
Now this opens all sorts of possibilities as to who placed the balloon and what message was being conveyed. Was it a relative or prior enemy of the deceased who was happy that the resident was finally where they belonged? Maybe they wanted to say that the interred was always happy and that the people who passed by needed to be reminded of that. Perhaps it was placed by a small child wanting to remember a playmate, or by a sibling or parent of the deceased, either young or taken before their so called time.
Possibly, the mystery would have been solved if we had taken the time to stop and read the headstone, thus determining the age, and relationship to the living. A picture or other information could have been there for us to study.
Or more unusual, could it have been a message from the deceased himself simply stating that, yes, everything is great here on this side, come on over? Or could it have been placed there just to make you wonder why there is a Smiley Faced balloon on a gravesite near a small Texas town? :) Larry