It’s been a Life.

No dolls tonight.
No news about my work.
I ask for the first time a delay to reply your emails I had about my dolls. Please allow me a couple of days and I will answer everyone of you.
Tonight I am here to make a tribute to someone.
I want first of all, to thank warmly everyone of you for your prayers, thoughts, kind words and wishes for my Grand Father.  But his time was come, therefore he passed away August the 3rd around 10pm.

some would say it’s the law of Nature, that it depends upon a certain kind of Logic. Mhhh… I would answer it depends upon the Nature of the person for this law to become easily  absurd. His departure is ABSURD and I fell into pieces on the floor. I am still trying to gather the pieces of myself to see if I still can be me without him.

My Grand Father was a Hero. He was a Man of Exception, a Living phenomenon, an unbelievable strength, and the only person I have ever been impressed by.
Architect, Mayor of his town since 1995, administrator of the Mercantour National Park ( where is the “Valley of Marvels with prehistoric caves with paintings), he was the elected representative for all the mayors for our state. He is the very only person I have ever met of this kind.
At 79 years old, he TAUGHT me how to use an Ipad, he was writing emails faster than I, capable to use three computers at the same time to handle his business appointments whilst he was talking to someone on his Iphone.
A few years ago, he had a heart attack in the middle of the night right after a knee surgery. He called no one. He got up, went to his car, drove about 30 miles till the hospital, parked the car in the emergency’s area and went in simply saying ” I am Mister Margaritora, I think I am having a heart attack, please call the cardiology’s professor in charge of my health.”
Then he only warned us in the morning to let us sleep quietly. This is how he was.
He was the most reliable person I ever saw. He was carrying on his shoulders all the weight of the world, because let’s face it : we were all counting on him for we knew he was the only capable to do it.
I owe him my own life and my younger son’s birth because we both wouldn’t have survived the birth without him stepping in and handling things.

I remember my childhood on his lap, for we were seeing him and Michelle my grand mother every single day. Sometimes he was taking my brother and I with him on his big armchair to make us watch something my mother and grand mother were yelling about… Like Terminator and that still makes me smile.
He has been the very first person I missed. I was about 2 and a half, and I asked for him all day. When the evening came, we met in front of my uncle’s building next to the port, it was a warm summer evening and I remember I ran towards him, he caught me in his arms and asked my mom ” What’s going on?” My mother said ” I don’t know! she wanted to see you now!” and I remember he smiled.

He taught me how to fish trouts, with my brother, in the rivers. He carried me so many times in his arms when I was crushed by fever to the doctor. He and my grand mother bought me so many gifts when I was sick, and some others if I was getting better. He taught me how to find the good mushrooms in the hoods. How to find those wild tiny strawberries in the bushes. But also, he taught me dignity. And intolerance as well as having a bad temper : some rude and unfair things cannot be tolerated and that I mustn’t keep quiet when it happens. He and my grand mother Michelle taught me to fight back. To be above for this is the way to win and succeed.

After my grand mother passed away, 20 years ago; he lived alone, in his hometown and became the mayor almost right away for he retired from architecture. I think he never had a day in his life without at least 7 business appointments. Even when he was ill, tired, having terrible cardiac operations; people were having appointments with him in his hospital room and he was handling his town through his cellphone.
He was a peculiar man. When I was a teenager, when I visited him at his place, he used to ask ” You’re hungry darling? Do you want a snack?” and if I ever answered yes, he grabbed a caviar can…
I had with him some of the greatest laughters of my entire life.

He was so out of the box. Walking thank to the help of a golf club for it was way more classy and practical than a cane. He had an immense class, always dressed like a lord with the most delicate taste. He was feared by many because of his bad and short temper. For being a living Force, he terrified whole crowds when he started to yell. Though… I have never been afraid of him. I was IMPRESSED. I always wished I could one day be the tenth of what and who he was. A few years ago, he sometimes asked to me ” Do you want a job darling? If so, just tell me!” I always answered ” I’ll find something good to do.”
Which I did. Then he made me the greatest gift when I became a sculptor : he has been PROUD of me. From the very first day. This is something I would never have even dared to dream about. Such man proud of me. When success knocked at my door; I can say that he talked about me and my work to absolutely everyone he knew; therefore THOUSANDS of people!

When something was going wrong, we all, in the family, called him right away. He was the most securing, efficient, helpful and reliable again, man in this world. He also was the Hero of my elder son Louis who is today devastated as we all are.

In 2009, he became Knight of Medal of Merit for the accomplishment of a life. I think that no one ever deserved it as much as him.

We cannot believe he is gone. My mother, My Uncle, My children, My cousins and I are all today waifed children lost in the dark. It is absurd to think he can be dead. The concept of his death has no sense. What an abyss…. What an emptiness where was still standing a giant three days ago… But what a presence. We all will always expect to see him in the streets of his little town. We will always look twice when we will see a tall man dressed like a lord in town to make sure it’s not him. We will all expect his voice in the house or the Town Hall. None of us will ever open his email box again without expecting seeing his name in the new messages. When our cellphones will ring, for a second we will all wonder if it’s him. How many time will we grab our own phones to call him? When we will be all together, how many times will we turn our heads towards his seat expecting him to laugh with us? And when Christmas will come, we will put his plate among ours and will not dare to take it off once we’ll realize he will not come; because we will anyway hope to suddenly hear the sound of his paces and his voice saying he’s late cause ” a moron didn’t get a thing to do so he had to do it himself!”
And how many times looking at the road, and seeing a fast big black car will we shout ” OH COMMANDATORE!!!!!!!!!!” before realizing it’s not our beloved Commandatore?
This never ending expectation to see them coming back is the gift left to us by the very rare Irreplaceable Persons of this world, and for sure, Grandpa is absolutely irreplaceable.

He was not talking sweetly and fondly. But he was saying important things using important words. Once, we were both alone in his hospital room, after the heart attack he had that I cited above; he knew I was devastated to know that my younger son was Autistic. He didn’t comfort me. He hasn’t been sorry nor sad. He took my arm firmly and said ” Arnaud is a good one. Look at me and listen to what I say : he is a good one. He will go far. Farer than you would ever believe. I am always right and you’ll see it later. But for now never forget what I say.”
Such words from him made me feel strangely secure and GOOD.

He also, did for me something very special. We never talk about my brother in the family. Everyone suffers too much of his loss to mention him and honestly no one dares to even say his name in front of my mother which is totally understandable. He was the only one having the guts to talk of US and to remind our childhood with me. Now he is gone too, I feel like I am the only one to remember who we were, what we used to be.

But I know what he would say now, I hear his voice like if he was sitting next to me right now; he would tell us : ” Give me a kiss on the cheek children! I gotta go. Michelle is waiting for me.”



  1. I am sorry for your loss and your family’s as well, not certain that there are any more words to offer solice. This tribute was absolutely in keeping with all express in life, exquisite, getting to the heart of the matter and with love and respect. Your Grandsire did well by you and your family as the tone and manner of your respect exemplifies. I wish you hugs, joy of rememberance and most of all gratitude for being his granddaughter. From all you have shared you had a remarkable experience and relationship. Hugs for your loss and pain but tenderness for the joy, foundational learnings and fact that he was yours. Pame’

  2. Aw, Nefer, what a wonderful tribute to a special man in your life! You were richly blessed to know him. Warm hugs, dear. Take care of yourself; blessings to you and yours.

  3. What a lovely tribute! Wish I could have known him. God bless you and your family, Nefer.

  4. I love the tribute to your grandfather. He sounds like a wonderful man, and the World is a better place for having had him in it.
    I read it with tears in my eyes. I’ve lost both my grandfathers and they were special to me, as well. They are the patriarchs of every family and once they leave this World they leave a huge void that is never able to be filled.
    I understand your pain, and send you s huge virtual hug! My thoughts are with you, along with my heart.

  5. What a lovely and stirring tribute to your grandfather. Your memories of him will keep him with you always.

  6. what a beautiful tribute, my dear friend….I feel your pain….love and light to you and your family….and a special hug for my friend Linda…..xoxoxoxoxo

  7. My darling friend Nefer, I am in tears, your words describe the most amazing & wonderful & proud man. I can sence him in you, he must have been incredibly proud of you as well my Baby Doll.
    My family sends you love & kisses & warm comforting cuddles sweetie.
    I love you dearly & am hurting because you are hurting. Grief will be with you always so try to let beautiful sweet memories of him in to sooth your aching heart as well.
    I will light another candle for him.

  8. I’m so sorry for your loss… He looks exactly how I had him pictured reading about him. Just full of personality and that smile! It sounds like he was a mighty Oak tree with branches and roots going for miles. I know what you mean about feeling empty… I lost both my parents and it was (and still is) an empty void in my heart. Your Grandpa will always be there alive as long as you remember him and share memories about him. I loved reading about him. He sounds so Amazing you could write a book about him someday. Beckie

  9. He was quite an incredible man and I know how much you loved him because of how you spoke of him in public and privately to me. He was integral to your life and that of your family and the loss is a great one.

    I leave you with this thought. He as your grandfather was so important in your life. Encourage that with your children and your parents, I know, it is already there, but, those bonds don’t just happen. That love and respect is fostered.

    I love you dear heart. I am so, so sorry that you and your family have to suffer through this loss. I am hoping that is will ease in time and that you celebrate all that he was, more than mourn the loss of him.

    You have my heart, as you have had from almost the first time we encountered one another.

    Love and light and hopefully soon, some laughter. 🙂

  10. Take your time to grieve for this amazing man. You’ve been blessed to have had his amazing force and spirit during your lifetime…….but now his passing seems overwhelming, all-consuming. The hole in your hearts will take time to heal. The waves of grief come on and on and on, relentless. Periods of calm , followed by another surging wave which threatens to push you under……and leaves you gasping and breathless. Just to repeat over and over.

    I only know you briefly , through your dolls…….but i feel your immense loss. My deepest sympathies to you and your entire family. All i can say is this. There WILL come a time when you come think of him and smile, with no tears. Remember his face, hear his voice, feel his hug……for he is with you always. He walks beside you.

    x janet

  11. Dear Nefer,
    What a touching tribute, I am so very sorry for your loss and my thoughts are with you and your family.


  12. There is an accomplishment of your Grandfather that is also very, very important to mention: those Hero qualities that drew people’s respect and love to him, he managed to pass them down to you. Part of it is genetic, but I’m sure he also wanted it that way: to see in you his strength, his dedication, his amazing work ethic, his ability to inspire and lead others, his fireproof honesty, his passionate love for his community and his work. Even his zero tolerance for morons and nonsense!

    There is a war-time song that sings of a soldier who is about to close his eyes forever, but he sings that it’s easier for him as he ‘knows who will follow in his footsteps’. Just judging by how much your friends respect and love you, I know you are following in your Grandfather’s footsteps – and wherever he is now, I’m sure he is proud of you.

    I hope the pain will ease in time, and I know his presence within you will stay forever. My prayers are with you, dear Nefer…

  13. My dearest Nefer,
    I’m so sorry for your loss, but your Grandfather must be so proud to have you as a Grand-daughter, looking down on you from heaven. He sounds so much like you. You carry on with all of his best attributes. And he was so right about Arnaud, I totally agree with him that Arnaud will go far. My darling friend, you have given such a beautiful tribute to him, that love must reach him now , and shine brightly in the stars above. Your heart will heal, but your memories will always live on, and warm your heart when you think of the love you had with him. A piece of him will be with you always.
    All my love, hugs and kisses, my chere ami.

  14. Nefer,what a wonderfull tribute to a special man. When I read abot him I thought I would have really liked to know him personal. He will be with you for ever in your mind and in all the things you learnd from him. Be glad that you had him in your family and shared a long way of your life with him.
    Hugs for you Sibyll

  15. That was beautiful~~and has made me cry….I’m sorry that the world has lost such a great man. You are lucky to have such love and guidance in you life. oxoxox

  16. I am sorry for your loss. He sounds like an amzing man who was gifted to love and be loved. I hope you hold strong and remember him and how proud he was of you.

  17. I give you all full of love and courage to overcome this difficult ordeal of life, full of Kisses

  18. A tribute to be proud of. I send you a piece of my heart and wish you peace in your own heart
    Lesley XXX

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