My Apologies!

I’m sorry I’ve been absent from my blog for so long.

Having made a good start on the sequel to The Legend of Aranrhod, I was ambushed by a sudden and urgent desire to create a record, in words and photographs, of my childhood years. I foolishly thought this wouldn’t take me long, since I don’t have a lot of memories.

However, I kept a daily diary for five whole months when I was eleven (such persistence!), and that brought back a lot of feelings and atmosphere, if only a few actual memories. In addition, I recorded daily entries for the last 21 months of secondary school, which gave me a lot of material.

Both my parents are dead, and so I’ve been plagued with the common regret that I didn’t quiz them a lot more about my childhood – and, indeed, about their childhood. My elder brother was a great help, mostly by confirming my own memories, which was important. I am also still in touch with my closest secondary school friend.

I’m about seven in the above photo. I could have wished for more photographs, but a roll of 8 for a Brownie box camera was quite an investment in the 1950s, so I’m grateful for what I’ve got. Their rarity elevates them, in all their blurred, black and white crudity, to the status of precious jewels; whereas now family photos are too numerous even to stick in albums, becoming instead an e-blur stashed away in countless computer files, rarely pruned and rarely looked at. That has ever been the fate of photos but more so as their quantity has increased. Pity family biographers of future generations, having to cope with such a large and repetitive photo store as well as probably boxfuls of camcorder cassettes and hours and hours of video stored online.

Anyway, this simple task has taken me all year. The account has ended up being 50% longer than my novel, which has surprised me, since I didn’t think there’d be much to say. I have no illusions that my children will rush to read it – yet. But when they’re my age and intimations of mortality begin to make them reflect on their own lives, I suspect they’ll dig out my Autobiography Vol #1 and find it interests them.

Meanwhile, even as I recorded my early life, the latest pages in my life story have continued to be written by the invisible hand of destiny – I had a week in hospital in May; our 5th grandchild, Ruth, arrived in June; our daughter got married in July; and, sadly, my brother passed away in August.

I am looking forward to getting back to the sequel. I wonder what I will think of what I’ve written when I read it after a gap of seven or eight months? I’ll let you know!



4 Responses to “My Apologies!”

  1. Karen Says:

    Great photo Geoff, you look quite mischievous! I hope I get to read the memoirs too x

  2. Molly Anderson Says:

    Hello, Geoff is my dad’s great uncle (I think, as I have been told) and I would just like to say Hi! I have your book and enjoy reading it many times! I have finally found where you are on the web, Hope you are well, Molly Anderson xx

    • Geoff Says:

      Hi again Molly.

      Just reread your comment and noticed that you refer to your dad as having me as his great uncle. In fact I am his plain old uncle. If I were Michael’s /great /uncle, I’d be a lot older than I am – and even older than I sometimes feel!

      Roy was my brother. He had Richard Michael and Matthew. So I’m their uncle. One of these had you (Michael, I think, but names are not my strength and I confess that I’ve been negligent of my extended family, so I could be wrong). So that makes me your great uncle.

      But I could be wrong about everything! Anyway, it doesn’t matter, the main thing is we’re family and I’m thrilled you enjoy the Legend. Just to show you how neglectful I’ve been of my extended family, I don’t have even the FAINTEST idea how old you are! I would really like to know because that tells me something about my book’s readership. I mean, if you were four, you’d be my youngest reader ever, but I’m sure you’re older than that! Because other people’s children grow up faster than one’s own seemed to at the time, I’m absolutely certain you’re a lot older than I might have guessed!

      Besides your present age, what I would appreciate is for you to tell me what age you were when you first read the Legend, and, if you’ve read it more than once, what kind of gaps you left between reading it again. When I was a child, I often read books more than once. Quite often I would read it and then read it again, out loud, to my mother while she was cooking, etc. The thing about stories is they draw you into another world which you become reluctant to leave. And also the characters often become like friends to you, and friends are precious, so it’s natural you want to see them again. Also, on a second reading, the experience is quite different because you notice all kinds of things you didn’t see first time through.

      Tell me what you enjoy doing besides reading. Actually, without knowing what age you are, I’m very much writing this in the dark. So I’ll stop now in case my questions don’t make any sense! So I’ll wait until I hear from you again.

      Thanks for making the effort to find me!

      Geoff x

  3. geoff anderson Says:

    I’m pretty sure you are Michael’s daughter, right? So that would indeed make me your great uncle, if there is no such thing as a grand uncle! I shall reply more fully by email. But how strange, you finding my ancient blog now when I was just intending to revive it or maybe start a new one. Expect an email from me soon. Geoff x

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