Once you open the door, it’s surprising what pops out!
I thought most of my childhood memories had come up with my last couple of posts. But…surprise! So…here goes.
I remember climbing on Stonehenge. (This was before it got so popular with visitors that for its protection it had to be fenced off.) As a child, the stones looked enormous…and magical and mystical.
I remember learning to knit in school…or at least, the teacher trying to teach us. I think it was Miss Bunny…and unfortunately the lessons didn’t really take. I finally learned to knit years later from my aunt.
I remember my mother hanging clothes to dry in our dining room (I think). That’s where the fire was, and since we didn’t have a dryer, in the cold weather that was the best place for heat.
And along with that, I remember freezing and roasting with the fireplace. In order to get warm all over, I had to keep turning. Otherwise the side facing the fire got super hot while the backside froze!
I remember the weekly doses of cod liver oil to make sure we were getting enough of whichever vitamin is found in it. I was so glad to discover I wasn’t going to have to continue that back in the States!
I remember having sinus issues–and my folks being told by the doctor that it would be better if I could spend the winter in France! That didn’t happen…we all just dealt with the colds and sinus “stuff.”
I remember one Christmas getting to hold a big turkey leg…unfortunately just for pictures to be sent back to grandparents! Once the picture was over, the turkey leg went back to the table to have the meat removed for everyone to share.
I remember when we got back to the States being on the train to come back to Independence. We had a sleeper, and we opened the curtains to watch the lights go by before we went to bed. When we arrived back, there was a large crowd to meet us–and I remember being surprised by all the noise and greetings.
I remember becoming aware that the way history is written (and taught) depends on who is doing it! When I left England, we had been studying the rebellion of the American colonies. When I started school in the States, we were studying the Revolutionary War…and the stories I heard about the events didn’t come close to what I had learned in England! I’ve always been grateful that my teacher was open to my sharing another perspective.
I remember struggling with some spelling…and there are still some words that I struggle with. I’m never sure whether it’s “judgment” or “judgement”…”grey” or “gray”…”acknowledgment” or “acknowledgement”… I’ve gotten over my struggle with “color” or “colour” but there are other cases in which both the English and American spelling look correct.
I realized that the countries really are two countries divided by the same language! Is it a “boot” of a car or a “trunk”? Is it a “cookie” or a “biscuit”? Is it the “hood” of a car or the “bonnet”? Are you going to the “chemist” or to the “pharmacy”? Are you going on “vacation” or “holiday” in a “caravan” or a “trailer”?
I remember being in high school before I knew that some close family friends were just that–friends, not relatives. We had always called them “Aunt” and “Uncle” as was the custom in England, and I just assumed that they really were.
And so it goes…