A treasure in an old shoe box

Some weeks ago I received a text message from my daughters mother urging me to come and get a few boxes of stuff that belong to me. She had cleaned up her cellar and if I would not collect my possessions ASAP they would be thrown away.
Seven years after I left her I collected some property of mine I did not know still existed.
It was mostly trash and a few books, news clippings and souvenirs of forgotten trips and holidays.

Among it was an old shoe box holding a treasure of long ago memories.

I haven’t browsed through it all yet.

First I found a few invitations for expositions my mom, my sister and I held some 30 years ago. Letters from a friend I hardly remembered.

Some pay slips and commission notes, 1986. With it a handful letters from happy customers thanking me for services rendered. One was sent by Air Mail from the Republic of Niger and written on very thin paper I was informed and thanked. After returning from Brussels to the senders mission in Africa my advice had helped him solve a problem with his printer. Check out the stamp celebrating the 1986 apparition of Halley’s Comet.

Halley's Comet

What I found next, digging deeper in the box, made me sob and then cry, the emotions and memories that engulfed me to overwhelming to deal with. Little A. is with me and I don’t want to make her feel uncomfortable.

I found old birthday cards written on and signed by aunts and uncles from England, my grandparents, my mother and father. Family long gone.

I could not believe my eyes when I held a card for my first birthday in my hands. Can you imagine? It is more than half a century old.

 Birthday Cards

When I found a card with a longer message written by my Father for my 12th birthday I could not continue. I was to afraid I would find a 13th birthday card with his writing on. My Father died two weeks after. That day my carefree childhood ended and nothing was ever the same again.

For a moment I felt fathomless sadness enveloping me. It was followed by intense gratitude for having known these loving and caring people whom helped me form and be who I am today.
My grandparents and my parents gave me an incredible and unforgettable childhood. They made me so very happy and I can only hope I made them happy and proud too.

I would love to continue this voyage with Princess.
Not only to share my earliest memories but my tears too.


3 thoughts on “A treasure in an old shoe box”

  1. I have those same kinds of feelings overwhelm me when I gaze upon handwriting and messages from one of my grandmothers. They were such a force in my life and I miss them keenly. I often stumble across a message from one when cooking and using one of their cook books or recipe cards. It always sends a rush of bittersweet joy to see it and remember good times and their love for me. Wishing you a very tender walk down memory lane, Sir.

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