I can’t make sense of this. WTF. Yesterday I was lucky enough to be one of the Munster faithful, to be under a placard in the West Stand of Thomond Park that spelt out the name ‘AXEL’ and the shirt number eight (see picture below). It was, for me anyway, a tribute to an incredible lionheart of Munster rugby, Anthony Foley who, suddenly and shockingly passed away at the age of 42 this week. As a proud Munsterman I am as bereft as the next supporter. It is incomprehensible how his family are coping with this terrible and inexplicable loss. The link ‘There is an Isle’ above is the anthem to Axel’s club Rugby side, Shannon RFC.
Anthony, was an extraordinary rugby player, an extraordinary Munster Man and by all accounts, listening and reading accounts of his life from those close to him and extraordinary friend and gentleman. Reading the messages on the condolences wall , now erected outside of the Shannon RFC Club house, it is clear that his passing has impacted the entire Munster family deeply, of course it has.
It was a privilege to be there yesterday, to be under his name, to bear witness to an extraordinary farewell. To expose the ‘Munster Soul’ , raw, aching and trying to mend itself after taking the worst hit possible. The players on the field played for Axel. It was a fantastic game. The way Axel would have wanted all Munster games to be. Munster 38, Glasgow 17. Thanks you all and Axel.
Life lessons from Christopher Walken: “None of us are getting out of here alive, so please stop treating yourself like an after thought. Eat the delicious food. Walk in the sunshine. Jump in the ocean. Say the truth that you’re carrying in your heart like hidden treasure. Be silly. Be kind. Be weird. There’s no time for anything else.”
Stop trying to make sense of it. Get busy living this life.
You can’t put an old head on young shoulders. We listen to the wise old sages telling us to enjoy this precious life. The fact is that people really only learn from experience. This sad weekend, we had a mass experience of grief, loss, bewilderment and a coming together that will live long in many of our memories. Axel’s coffin also carried his Munster and Irish cap’s. Axel achieved so much in his short stint. he would be first to say, “Stop trying to make sense of it. Get busy living this life”.