Friday 23 May 2014

An Important Day for so Many.

    I am writing this post on Friday afternoon. Deliberately so before the big event, My mood tomorrow evening could be ecstatic, or perhaps suicidally depressed. Thirty seven thousand people are travelling from Derby to attend. Now that's a lot of people. And the big event? A religious gathering, in a way, yes. Derby County play Queens Park Rangers at Wembley in the Play Off final. The prize, a place in the Premier League of British Football. Said to be worth around £160 million pounds to the winners over five years.
    Now I don't expect everyone to love football. The same as I am not so keen on golf and golfers but I don't 'go on' about it. Not too often, anyway! But what gets 'right up my nose' are those people who rant and rave about football being 'oh so bad for us all'  yet never go themselves. Armchair experts, they drive me quite mad. We true supporters KNOW that too often we're watching overpaid prima donna's; and the clubs are often owned by filthy rich foreigners who know little about footballers but that's the world we live in. We, Derby County supporters have had an exciting season and witnessed some magical football. Nothing can that away from us. It won't be the end of the world tomorrow if we lose, but it might as well be!
    All this excitement in Derby, often dreary old Derby made me think. How many events in our little lives are truly exceptional. Perhaps when we were children life was full of wondrous experiences. Experiences LIVED, real, not viewed second hand via a fifty-five inch screen.
    I have lived over seventy years, so what are the events happenings that I remember most. VE Day,
people happy and relaxed, many swigging from tankards as they walked the village streets. The Coronation, in 1953, trestle tables laid out with food, glorious food. School trips, including one where  we saw, Little Johns grave. Plus a week at Mundesly where we slept on straw filled sacks in ex-army tents. Carefree days, all real, all experienced in childhood.
    Adult experiences seem less carefree, inevitable I suppose. Marriage is not to be taken lightly; the day remembered, the feelings experienced I cannot recall. The birth of children induces anxiety, and ecstatic joy. Death appears mores in the adult world; I remember death from childhood, though infrequently; or is this the mind playing tricks. Undoubtedly adulthood is a more serious business. 
So, when thirty thousand plus descend on London, all thought of adulthood flies out the window, be it train, coach or car.
     I won't be at We
mbley. So I shall miss that incredible heart stopping experience. (Neither of us, sadly, are fit enough to take part in the ultimate footballing experience.) But we know will enjoy the day with friends. For once hurrah for a fifty five inch screen! I view the next twenty six hours with  trepidation, but also hope. I don't expect everyone to understand.

Tuesday 13 May 2014

Have You Made Your Mark?

    Having done over four hundred blogs I have spells where new subjects prove difficult. Then, like buses, two come along together.dx
     I came across a photograph recently. It was in a box with others that belonged to Ida, mey aunt who died some time ago. Now most families 'inherit' boxes of belongings from deceased relations, close or otherwise; most common being photographs; car boots are full of them, discarded with little feeling. In Ida's box, photos of people long gone, and of trips made in Ida's time at least to 'not so far away places'. Family photos, nostalgic, unexceptional and unimportant. Friends through the ages, part of Ida's life, from the proverbial 'cradle to the grave'.
    I glanced through the collection, interested, but only up to a point. For, sadly we tend to be more interested in ourselves. Life moves on, taking us with it at an ever increasing pace.
    One photo intrigued me more than the rest. It took me a while to realise why. In every single photo I could recognise a 'connection', however tenuous; close family, distant family, friends ancient and modern; always a connection. But in one photo only, NOTHING. I do not recognise either person. No clue as to where, why or when. No writing on the back of the photo, nothing; a mystery indeed.
    A bride and groom; or is it 'father' and the bride. (My wife maintains people in old photos always look older than they are!) A wedding and a wedding day, surely. Taken in the 1920's? And that's about it. Presumable now deceased. Are there children or grandchildren around now; nearby or far away? Lost forever; to me and mine; never in fact 'found'. I wonder if they found happiness in their lives. Funny things, photos. Proof that we existed. Millions and millions of us. All passing through, so to speak. (Some cultures are not so keen on photos, 'a photo steals the soul' and all that.) The photo in mind is proof that this couple existed. And now they are gone. A simple truth, in the great 'history of the world'; how odd, how sad.  
Do you relate to all this. Is your life organised, complete, totally in order. Or does your life, like mine contain missing links. Will people know of your existence in a hundred years hence. Perhaps more important, do you care!
    Probably because I'm thinking of too many daft things and not looking what I'm doing I fell down! In the kitchen. After I'd been to the pub and no, I wasn't drunk! I'm very unstable still after my operation; plus the wrong footwear; old age and senility, whatever, in the blink of an eye I was on the floor, shaken, not stirred so to speak. I try to be positive in life ; in this case scenario, I realised nothing appeared seriously damaged, apart from my pride. My wife was alarmed, naturally I suppose. 'Cat' surveyed me with interest. He licked my face and fingers then decided to sit, obviously comfortably on my chest. (Fact, this cat NEVER sits merely on the floor, he sits on ANYTHING that is not mere floor. His history is unknown; where has he learnt this habit, I wonder.) 
    It's special, in a way lying on a floor. You can actually see where the draught you feel so often in the lounge comes from; under the kitchen door. You can see under the radiator: bits of toast, plenty of fluff, a dirty knife, fork and a a spoon; disgusting! All very interesting but not a patch on television. Plus I was on my way to the toilet. And at my age, when you've got to go, you've got to go!
   Now I can't get myself to the 'perpendicular' once I'm on the floor. And although I'm not particularly big my wife has no chance of lifting me. Could be awkward. Being incapacitated at times is chronically difficult. I do appreciate, though not enough the difficulties those living on their own
on a daily basis experience. I'm lucky, I live at number 29, Gurney Avenue. My six foot son-in-law Simon and family live at number 24! A quick phone call and within the blink of an eye Simon is gently hauling me to my feet. So here's to the next time. Life goes on; we make our mark in more ways than one. What will you be remembered for?