Homesick

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I moved away from home 40 years ago. I was going to college and I got in to the polytechnic I attended. I completed my qualification and met my partner who became my hubby. We stayed here and although I went “home” for visits I never went back to the town I was born in properly, I mean permanently.

That was OK, but then my parent died and my sister who had lived there all her life decided to move away to another town. Now when I feel homesick I can’t drive there. It would be too odd to park outside. Would the new owners be aware I was there? Would it seem like stalking? I dont think I could do it. But what I do sometimes do is look on Google maps. I used to use the figure Icon and look at the house as if I was in the street. Obviously it’s not photographed every year but I noted changes in the drive and trees that have been removed. Now Google maps only shows me a view from the air. I used to use the roadside version so I could pretend to drive home. At least I have good memories but I do miss my old Home. X

Enamel kiln

DSC_0026Enamel kiln at Gladstone pottery museum, Longton, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire. These burn hotter than a normal pottery kiln. This is to create enamel from powdered glass, fired about 1400°C. There is a working enamel kiln at Stevensons in Middlewich on the banks of the Trent and Mersey canal. Enamels are used from jewellery to bathroom ware. This is because it has to be stronger and not chip or crack.

The industrial heritage of this country is hanging on. Places like the Black Country museum in Dudley in the West Midlands give us a place to see how the past was. Manufacturing changes and evolves. Soon robots and AI might be the only way things are made. But despite the old dirty polluting past may have been bad, it still stirs memories and romantic ideas of the way things were.

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Shouting

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It’s dark outside, in two minutes it will be the longest day of the year. In one minute……

There’s shouting outside, raucous farewells from the pub we live near to. A car revvs loudly in the night, then screeches of up the hill. A woman screams with laughter, so loud it sounds like distress but it turns into a loud giggle.

The longest day has arrived, well actually it did an hour ago. But because we are now in British summertime, our 1am is 12 (midnight) in the rest of the timezone we are in.

The noises have faded. Perhaps they have gone home. Taking their fag ends with them I hope. That is something that really annoys me since the smoking ban. People smoke outside and then discard the cigarette butt’s.

Someone is walking past, heavy shoes Thudding on the pavement outside like a rushing heart beat.

I’d better get some sleep, today, now, is a sad day, a relative passed away a few years ago and I remember it being the 21st of June, the longest day. My memories are stirred every year at thus time.

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Thanks to Martha I can post again.

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I managed to delete photos from my WordPress account so I can now post new ones. Thanks to my friend for helping and explaining how to do it.

I deleted over 10%, so if you look back at some of my old posts there may not be images to accompany them. At least it means I can avoid upgrading my account and also save a bit of money.

So… Posts and more posts to come

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Gran

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It’s 23 years since she died and I still miss her. I miss the visits with my mother to see her. She had an open fire in her living room and when I was little I used to make spills of rolled up newspaper to light the fire with. I think my grandad used to use them to light his pipe. Infront of the fire was a big peg rug, made of pieces of rag cut into thin strips and pushed through a hessian sack backing. The chimney caught fire once because gran had put a board across it to draw the air in. The fire caught the soot in the chimney. The fire brigade arrived.

At one stage I remember the kitchen had a tin bath on a ledge at the end of the kitchen. They must have had it infront of the fire. The other downstairs room in the house was the front parlour. It had a big heavy suite in it and an aspedistera in a pot on a stand. The parlour was only ever used for formal occasions. I think I remember dusting it for gran sometimes.

At the back of the house was an alleyway but it was only narrow and beyond that was the gate into the back garden. Gran and grandad used to keep hens.

Once you start remembering it’s funny what comes back.

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The steps

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The steps were old concrete and brick. Like the ones they had at school all those years ago. When she was a child they would play tinker, taylor, soldier on them. You had to jump up or down from one step to another depending on what your friends shouted. She couldn’t remember exactly how it worked but it was fun . That must have been 50 years ago.

She had walked past these steps every day for months. The tangle of vegetation was getting worse. Today though, she had decided to climb them. There was an old grey wooden door at the top of them. She would knock on and see if anyone answered??

It was quiet on the steps, the traffic noise from the road seemed to have died down. A haze like a mirage floated in the air. She stood for a moment taking this in. Realising how steep the steps were. How flimsy the handrail. She knocked……

Ancient stares

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The ancients, they look on through time. They see the world now and remember what it was like then. They are in the gargoyles, in statues, in faces in stone. They are hidden where they could find space. They may be thousands of years old but they do not last forever. As age wears them the ancient spirit wears away too. Look at that old stone head on the corner of the wall. It’s spirit is washing away with every bit of grit the rain wears away. See that old stone face on the plinth? Hands rub its bald head and gradually it dwindles.

Ancient memories dwindle too. Now there are moments of sunshine seen six hundred years ago which will not last much longer. There a remembrance of a lost husband or wife that was once strong but now veiled. Ancients seeing the world now are amazed at the destruction and damage. Trees that they have lived with cur down in an instant. Buildings they became part of ripped apart and turned to rubble.

Now the ancients share with younger spirits. To be a homeless ancient is to gradually disperse into the air and blow away on the wind. Long forgotten, never to be seen again.