Sometimes looking for old friends in Google does not give back the result you are expecting nor are you ready for the outcome when the name of your old friend appears on your screen. I wasn’t prepared for this when I looked up an old friend of years gone by and saw the line “In memoriam Hrvoje Plešnik” on a website for Croatian chess players in Zagreb.
Yes I know, I am not a keen sharer of petitions because I have the feeling it never helps and I must admit, even this one will probably be of little interest to you but today I must act. I urge you to sign a petition. I just did, wholeheartedly. You see, I am what they call an anglophile, I love England.
Ok, this is by far my best childhood memory: the steam operated merry-go-round in The Efteling theme park in The Netherlands.
I was five or six I think and in those days the Carousel was still outside, it’s now an indoor feature but in those days it was outside and a steam powered event. I can still remember the smell of soot and steam and it was beautiful to be in.
Today I woke up with a fever and a headache, I have the Flu. And where normally I am up and about early, running errands in my little car or to the park photographing, I now stay put and be miserable on the couch not knowing what to do.
But the fever is finally gone now so I took my camera for a little project: photographing two oddities. One that should be in H0 scale but is not and the other one is the other way around, it is built in OO gauge.
Everybody has his or her own style. My daughter has hers, quite alien to mine but hey she’s 16 after all. Weren’t we all a bit different than our parents at that age?
She sometimes says I’m sort of hipster but after careful evaluation I have decided that my personal style is authentic. And if that particular style hasn’t been invented yet I will do it now.
Today I bought new glasses. For months now I have difficulties reading.
Now this is an event that I’d like to postpone as long as possible as it’s a reminder that I am getting old. But I can’t read my newspaper anymore or read from the Bible after we had our dinner (Tea if you prefer and you’re British).
So within a day or 10 I will be going from a 0.75 dioptre addition to a whopping 1.75! But what a difference it will make! Just so I don’t change into a grumpy old man. It’ll be a change for the better surely, won’t it?
I searched three years to find her you know, for Christa.
I was recuperating from an accident in those days, I was in a wheelchair. In a freak accident late at night I had broken some bones in the Pelvis area and I was in a daily program of physiotherapy and exercises to regain lost muscles during the period in the hospital.
I also had to learn to walk again but that was later. I was staying at my sister and her husband as they were trained nurses and I couldn’t take care of myself then.
What’s on your mind, Leendert? Facebook asks me. To be honest, my head is like a Discotheque right now. Trumpets on the left, drummer on the right.
Just one fabulous party with a band on stage, playing upbeat songs and high speed guitar strings.
Why? Because I feel like it. Like a party. But only in my head, I do not want anyone to think I’m mad or something. Just happy. The only thing they’ll be seeing is my foot wiggling at the rhythm of the music they can’t hear.
And I would walk 500 more. Ok, maybe I won’t do exactly that though but only because I am physically incapable of walking that far.
I am now back home and I’m playing this The Proclaimers CD I once bought in England when I was young. It reminds me of good times and it makes me happy.
My first gold watch, I bought it in 1989 at Ratner’s in Norwich. So many good memories come back now when I pick it up to look at it.
Sometimes, just sometimes, I wish I could go back in time and hop on my pushbike and speed down Kett’s Hill and turn left into the city center to go there again.
It’s safely tucked away with all the other good memories now.