Friday, 19 August 2011

This is how it is but that was how it was

I’m going to Huddersfield, West Yorkshire tomorrow. It’s a bit like going home. I lived in this bastion of Luddites’ uprising for many years. It features the location of the first home I ever owned. A wonderful stone built, end terrace house appropriately enough opposite a mill where they spun yarns – a bit like me. Though mine are less good at knitting into cardigans.

A great friend of mine still lives there. Not in my old house but in one of her own, a back-to-back in what some might think of as a slightly posher area of town. She doesn’t have a genuine Irish pub down the end of her street. Nor a mosque at the other end.

Many years ago we went away together on one of my very few holidays abroad. I was reminded today that I had promised to email my photos of it to her although I have already given her a little booklet with them all in. I had scanned the prints for an online site so I could create that booklet. They weren’t taken on a digital camera – it was that long ago.

I love old photos. They remind me of how things used to be. How I and my friends and family used to look. Things we used to do. Just this morning, I emailed a bad photo I had taken on my mobile to MyMan saying: “I still want a photo of you… and of us together.”

He doesn’t like having his photo taken. I don’t particularly like it either. Of course, some photos are different. They are a professional necessity. Despite this evidence from childhood, I am not really a poser – I’m the one in the middle!
At home I have a photo frame with a picture of me and two of my best friends in. The frame says Good Times all round the edge. That’s what photos are great for – reminding us of the good times. In the dark days and in the dimness of my diminishing memory I need those reminders.

I hope I can persuade friends to take some photos over the coming few days. Then, in years to come, I’ll be able to look back at them and say “This may be how it is, but that was how it was”. Meanwhile, tomorrow night me and my Huddersfield friend will be saying “those were the days my friend”. I don’t think we’ll be singing it. Even in Corfu we weren’t that drunk.

P.S. Hopefully, on Thursday I'll get my new blood test results. Equally hopefully there will be something to celebrate and I will be having to curtail my Yorkshire holiday to come back for the ECG testing that accompanies restarting wonder drug Gilenya. Cross your fingers for me please.

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