This last weekend I have been back in Chester staying at my recently late father’s house. The house is full of memories, not just mine but the lives of my parents and theirs before them. Memories captured in possessions and artefacts, souvenirs and eclectic collections of ….well stuff! Items that my parents chose to have in their lives, to surround themselves with.
My brother and I live very different lifestyles, from both the parents and each other for that matter. Now this lately parental home, a relic of our parents lives needs to be disbanded and recycled to have a use and a purpose again.Neither of us has been ready to strip out the house yet, preferring to test the waters a toe at a time, a few items here and there.
Pictures given to other family members, a television set here, a set of pots and pans there. We are learning bit by bit – literally so – what is acceptable.
This afternoon I met up with my brother and his six year old son at their local village fair. And what a simply magnificent example of the archetypal English Summer Fete it was, complete with intermittent rain showers, pony rides, hot dogs and Tug – O – War teams! Our respective six year olds pleaded for pound coins for the tombola stalls. My eleven year old was utter restraint embodied for once….
Tabby winning a medal for the running races. Photo courtesy of Google+ instant upload!
As we watched them run full pelt from stall to stall, weaving through the legs and dogs on leads, watching them gather up armfuls of cuddly toys, deftly retrieved to us with the spirit of a black labrador, we chatted with the Vicar who had held the services for our parents.
The children were eyeing up speculatively this truly monstrous three foot high lilac rabbit, desire in their eyes. The adults meanwhile, were regaling each other with tales of the cuddly toys by which we have all been held ransom. The Rectory attics are apparently echoing chambers, stilled by an enviable collection of stuffed animals. My brother’s ceilings positively sag under the weight of bin bags of various coloured cuddly toys – and I can verify this! For myself a couple of skips would offload the issue to hand.
Tabby came second in the under sevens race - she is on the right!
This emotional attachment to physical things, however unlikely in the case of the three foot lilac creature, is mysterious since we keep memories in such compact spaces and seemingly endless storage. Even if the filing system is sometimes a bit random access…
Normal service should return soon 😉