Funnily enough, for a person who claims to have far too much black in her wardrobe I did not have a plethora of funeral-friendly outfits. Of course, it didn't really matter what anyone wore, because our faces were not exactly festive.
The place was completely packed; cars parked each other in and there weren't enough chairs for all the folk who'd come to say goodbye. The casket entered the room accompanied by a Maori chant which I don't know the name for - like a powhiri but probably different. Members of the family and old friends, often overcome by emotion, recounted anecdotes from the editter's life and reminded us of the qualities that endeared her to us - the super-quick wit, the scarily sharp memory, the ease with which she made friends and her way with children.
Of course, I teared up as soon as we arrived and didn't stop until the end of the service.
I would have liked to stay after the service ended; to join in with the the reminiscing would have made it easier for me to walk away with happy memories in my head. But I had to get back to work, so we said our goodbyes to the ones we knew - only to return because someone's little blue Chevrolet Cruze had parked us in (which no one would admit to owning, but which mysteriously disappeared soon after I made the request public).