How can you miss someone you've never met? How can your heart break when you read of her death?
I'm not sure what led me to visit Char's blog for the first time on my birthday, two years ago, but I do know that it was like an unexpected gift to discover her beautiful images. She inspired me to learn how to add textures to a photo, and she was generous with words of encouragement at my first, horrible attempts.
Occasionally sharp, often introspective, always well-written, hers was an authentic voice chronicling a life that at times seemed very hard. But her posts were larded with humor as well, and leavened with the real joy she found in her friends and family.
If you read Char, you will know that she could make your mouth water with her Southern cooking. She could make your heart sing with joy at the sight of a sunset. She made this Yankee an unofficial daughter of the South on her drives down the back roads of Alabama, in search of something beautiful to photograph. But the images that I will always remember the best are of her windowsill -- a few simple flowers in one of her beloved antique glass bottles.
I will miss her ipod playlists, which often left a song stuck in my head for the rest of the day. Fortunately, it was usually a good song -- her taste in music was extensive and catholic. I will miss her often acerbic wit -- sometimes directed at the foibles of her fellow man, but just as often targeted at her own self-perceived shortcomings. I will miss her laughter. I will miss her honesty. I will miss her voice in my head -- a low, Southern drawl with a hint of steel behind it.
As several bloggers have noted, she is most assuredly now in heaven with her beloved mother. I extend to her family my deepest sympathies. She will be missed by so many.