It’s my way to wait until something enters my head, then I pick up my tablet and I start writing away. Sometimes I write for a while and another idea takes over. On a few occasions I almost complete a post then a better idea pops into my cranium so I park the post to be picked up another time. Today I'm going to pick up a post that I’ve done a bit of work on. I called it possessions. Why? Because it’s about stuff around the house and how it all came into our possession.
Early one morning I was quietly sitting in our lounge and thinking only a few of you have been to our modest house so I thought I’d give you, over the next few posts, an insight into Neil and Tricia’s history of our eclectic interior decorating style AKA filling our house with odds and sods.
So here’s a photo of what’s in front of me when I’m sitting on our sofa.
From the left the large floor lamp, hugely expensive but we got it undamaged from a flooded house. There's an artist’s proof on the wall from the renowned but controversial artist Graham Ovenden, a wedding present from my brother Matt. Then there's the black leather chair which came with a big black footstool and large black leather sofa which I’m sitting on right now. These came at a really good price from a smoker’s house in South Devon the downside of which was we had to store all three bits in our neighbour’s garage for 3 months to “air them out". The tree sculpture above the fireplace, bought in a Cardiff Christmas market about 10 years ago. 2 small coffee tables, we have about a dozen scattered around the house, seconds. A brown sofa, one of a pair, payment for a weekend in our house in France which was never taken. TV, first prize in a raffle. A brass log bucket from my late father. The light fitting made at Eden from scrap materials.
All these possessions with interesting stories are things I, probably unjustifiably, give great cachet to. But I sense a change in me, all these interesting possessions are becoming to me just stuff.
Some things, however, are so much more than just stuff. I’ve unexpectedly had stuff delivered. On Wednesday I received two packages, one pair of Christmas/winter socks from Karen and a peculiar book from Rita and Paul. Thank you all. These little packages mean much more than just the contents themselves.
In compliance with the latest set of lockdown rules I met one friend, Emma, with her dog, Charlie, (on my own) for some exercise. A walk along Spit beach, a beach she'd never been to previously. She chose to spend her time coming to see me. A couple days ago I mentioned to Abbi I intended to walk to Spit so she also, unilaterally, chose to walk her dog, Ronnie, at the beach at the same time. A short walk for her. As awkward as it was we were diligent with our social distancing.
Abbi arranged to later meet with her sister Lauren for a swim at Porthpean beach. Tricia and I decided to join them to watch (definitely not to swim). So off we went, suitably socially distanced from whoever we met along the way. By taking two periods of exercise I suppose we may have been breaking the rules, God forfend.
Then, almost instant karma, I knew we shouldn't have been out for two periods of exercise, perhaps we shouldn't have driven but when we returned to our car it had been significantly damaged. The big white Landover that was parked in front of me simply backed into our car. You probably would have, like me, had a quick scope for a note with a phone number. As expected a futile exercise.
But the interesting thing was this. I had no anger! I wasn’t numb, I was completely aware of the situation. My car isn’t particularly special but it was my late dad's. He was very proud of his car and as a sign of respect I’ve always looked after it. But it’s a car, on balance it’s not important, we have another. It's still legal, it’s still drivable, just damaged.
I'd just had a lovely walk on the beach watching two daughters swim. Very proud. I’d had a walk with my friend, I’ve received gifts that made me very happy.
Without people, however remote, my life would lose its richness.
Without possessions? Well it's all just stuff.
As for the car, another friend Paul will magically mend it with a replacement bonnet.
And to the Landover driver, you, my friend, are clearly a child of a lesser God, I c*nt find a suitable word to describe you.
You, dear reader, can help me out here. Please insert a suitable cruelly descriptive word for the Landover driver here ...................
Ah! That’s better. Thank you.