Death—with a cup of tea and a slice of cake
- By: Sally Carter
I was nearly late for the Death Cafe. I couldn’t find it. Death cafes or Cafes Mortels were started by the sociologist Bernard Crettaz in Switzerland more than 10 years ago to get the public to talk about death. The concept is simple—food, drink, people, and death as the topic of conversation. The British version is run by Jon Underwood. I’d read an article about it in the London Evening Standard and contacted Jon through the Death Cafe website. I was sent instructions on when and how to get to the event, and asked to bring photographs of a person close to me who had died. I was nervous. I was only going out of curiosity. I wasn’t grieving for anyone.
The cafe was held in a home in Hackney. The living room was as stylish as you would expect from trendy East London, yet still welcoming and had an