My mum went into a care home just before her 90th birthday – she has Alzheimers and it’s a sad time. (Dad died in early 1987)
I’ve offered to digitalise some of dad’s slide collection so we can view them not just on dark evenings on a white sheet on the wall…but anytime. This is both distracting me but also helping me connect with the people my parents were before they became Mum and Dad.
I’m not blogging many of the thousands we have, neatly stacked and year dated in boxes but this collection labelled ‘France 1956’ are worth sharing I think.
Sheila (mum), Dick (dad), their friends Derek and Eileen and their two small children (Terry and Wendy) flew from Blackpool airport, taking a Morris Minor with them that belonged to Terry.
Landing in Paris they took photographs as they drove through the city…only getting out briefly to have their photograph taken under the Eiffel tower.
Then they drove down to ‘somewhere’ in the South of France for a holiday, I think they stayed in a borrowed apartment.
Mum made her own bikini because it wasn’t something you could yet buy easily in Blackpool, it was after all just three years since Bardot sensationally wore a bikini at the Cannes film festival.
It was the year Grace Kelly became a Princess and it was the year my parents (and their friends) holidayed abroad. (The next time my parents went abroad was 25 years later…they returned to Paris).
Today I think
Only with scents- scents dead leaves yield,
And bracken, and wild carrot’s seed,
And the square mustard field;
Odours that rise
When the spade wounds the roots of tree,
Rose, currant, raspberry, or goutweed,
Rhubarb or celery;
The smoke’s smell, too,
Flowing from where a bonfire burns
The dead, the waste, the dangerous,
And all to sweetness turns.
It is enough
To smell, to crumble the dark earth,
While the robin sings over again
Sad songs of Autumn mirth.