Sunday, 3 March 2013

Precious Indeed

How did we get to the first Sunday in March? The usual way, I imagine! At least it provides me with the opportunity to join Sian and the gang for Storytelling Sunday Three over at From High in the Sky. For 2013, there's a twist to the storytelling: write about something precious, if you so desire.

Few things remain from my childhood. A fire at my mother's house stole away most of the memorabilia I had collected well into my teens. However, these few books survived.



They are among my most prized possessions. These books represent the person I was striving to be, and the person I became. I loved learning. I am still learning. New things. Every day. Looking back, I can still remember how I felt and how proud the family were of my achievements.



The Geography Prize -The World We Live In - was awarded for an essay I wrote about a school trip to Staithes in North Yorkshire. It was my first time away from home, an exhilarating adventure. You can imagine my recent surprise, while watching television with my grandchildren, when Staithes appeared on the screen in a programme called 'Old Jack's Boat'. The grandchildren were excited that I had visited Staithes (where the programme is filmed) and I love that it looks unchanged. The school stayed at a youth hostel on top of a cliff that overlooked the bay and estuary. Such freedom away from home. I don't remember crying or asking to go home, although others did, but I do remember how sharply I missed my brother. I wanted desperately to share the experience with him. I even used up some of my pocket money pennies to phone home to gabble it all out before we got cut off.

These books evoke in me, not sadness for a time gone by but gladness that I recognised even back then the importance of learning and the never ceasing wonderment of being enchanted by the world around me. Precious memories indeed.

Do pop on over to From High in the Sky. You will receive a very warm welcome.

Thanks for stopping by.


21 comments:

Lythan said...

I've still got one of the books I won as a prize. They kind of anchor you to the past don't they. I lvoe the fact that you phoned home to tell your brother all about your adventures! thanks for sharing your story

Ladkyis said...

Now they are indeed precious! Thank you for sharing

Scrappi Sandi said...

How wonderful that these have survived! I still have my childhood books...back then I was taught that books are precious & not to be abused! I've never forgotten that lesson! Thanks for sharing thes lovely memories & I'm so with you on the whole 'keep learning' thing...another lesson learned young...question everything!!!! :D

Sabrina S. said...

Your story struck a chord in me. I still have an old one from my grandmother's childhood. So priceless!
Cheers from France

Karen said...

Books are among my most precious possessions, and I still have a couple from my childhood as well. Thanks for sharing your touching story.

Sian said...

How glad I was to hear that some of your books had survived the fire. That must have been very hard.

..and how precious is any memory a book can bring back. It's easy to tell today how vividly it has come back to you - and it's a pleasure to read. Thanks Irene, for the dip into your memory today.

Louise said...

oh my a fire! that's not good. it's good to hear that something survived. a lovely story.

Elizabeth said...

How fortunate you still have your beloved books. My mother was not a saver so there is nothing left of my childhood but the memories of reading my favorite books.

Missus Wookie said...

The Princess & the Curdie is a favourite here. So glad that your books survived and you got to share the place - even through a tv programme with your kids.

Beverly said...

A treasure but even more so because of the fire. I love that you wanted so much for your brother to experience it with you. Did he ever get to go?

Sheena said...

I'm so glad you still have these treasured books, as like you our home has been destroyed by fire making the things left behind even more precious xxx

Barbara Eads said...

I am so happy for you that your books survived that fire. I am a book lover, but unfortunately, I wasn't sentimental enough when I was little to keep many. I have quite a collection now, but the only old ones are from antique shops. Your essay sounds interesting and the trip too! Funny you would miss your brother---I was happy to be away from mine---too many kids in my family!

S said...

Oh how lovely to see your old books and hear your story. I often wonder if our books currently will hold the same charm to future generations. I hope so, I've saved a box full of my kids' books for their children.

debs14 said...

How sad that you lost so much in the fire but it makes these books all the more precious.

Alison said...

Lovely to see you back, Irene! So glad your precious books survived the fire...they have special memories attached to them indeed!
Alison xx

Amy said...

Oh gosh, you have reminded me of some of my precious items. I'm glad you have these books, it is such a shame when fire destroys our bits and pieces.

Karen said...

What a wonderful precious and how exciting to be able to share them and your tales of travels with your grandchildren.

Becky said...

Very precious books indeed :-)

Jo said...

That is a lovely story and your books are certainly precious x

alexa said...

Oh my goodness how hard to lose such a lot in a fire :(. But your enthusiasm and joy in learning and sharing just shines through! How poignant to miss your brother so … A very precious thing indeed.

Chipper said...

What lovely books. I am glad you still have them.