Early childhood, reassuring moments that persuade you the world was not always full of cynics, and especially that you were not one of them!
First memory; a summer picnic eaten out the back of father's grey farm van, it was raining a typical British Summer! Cowslips & Milk Maids in the ditch, hard boiled eggs, soggy sandwiches and a damp flannel that mother ingloriously wiped my face with! We collected frog's spawn, God only knows what we did with it after it had been transferred into its rather restricted new home of the jam jar, we certainly didn’t have a pond!
The second; 'Binky-the-Cat' had her kittens in the dog’s kennel. I have certainly ‘rosied up’ that memory over the years, but other than that childhood memories return on a whim, from forbidden slides down the hop shoot to illicit licks of icicles that hung from the tractor barn, at the time so sought after with their sparkly appeal, but now I wonder as to whether that sparkle may have been more attributed to the rusty roof than winters magic!
I remember always my fascination for colour, and scent, the wind in my hair and the sense of adventure before me. Picking Bluebells, Red Campion, Primroses, Greater Stitchwort, Cowslips, the pleasure in returning them to my mother in my hot sweaty hands was immense, the simple pastime now frowned upon for fear that they may be the last picked, or that they should be left for others to appreciate, both valid and disappointing.
..........but as soon as you start remembering you can’t stop!
All sorts of things pop back into your head, and never with any order, or for that matter any sense, why is it that such random things remain, and yet I can’t remember someone’s name that I met yesterday?!
My favourite 'Tall Story' is from one Christmas where it seemed as if everyone had given me an umbrella! To the back of the farmhouse, adjacent to the pantry door was some kind of out house, the steps to which I decided to climb whilst clutching my umbrellas, these steps were edged by railings, but you could dip under them if you sat down, being the adventurous type, or just plain stupid, I thought that I would see if I could fly!
I am not sure if I was basing myself on Mary Poppins with her umbrella or Winnie the Pooh with his blue balloon escaping from the bees, whatever the thought process armed with every umbrella that I had clumped together in my little fists I jumped from the top of the staircase, needless to say I had a crash landing and remained unharmed, but to this day I am positive I went up before I came down!