Sunday, 7 February 2010

Weekend Snapshots ~ 4: Going home

It’s been a whirlwind of a weekend.  I rushed to Euston Rail Station after work on Friday to catch a train to Manchester.  Remind me not to do that again – Euston is mayhem at that time on a Friday and my train was late.  I met Ste there and we spent Friday night with my old friend Nina and her family before driving off to Rainhill on Saturday to see my Dad.  We watched the Merseyside derby between Everton and Liverpool and were all suitably unimpressed with the score and then we rushed off to see my Aunty Barbara and Uncle Dave.  After that we checked into the Hillcrest Hotel in Widnes, had a power nap and then met my Dad and step-Mum Les for dinner.  It was this morning before I realised that my camera had not yet left my bag.  We’d been pretty busy and this trip was all about the serious business of touching base with friends and family.

We had a short while before we were due at my Dad’s house at 11am this morning so I asked Stephen to drive on down to Nutgrove which is where I used to live in the late 1970s and where I started school.

This was the house I lived at from the age of five to eight.  That is my bedroom there at the front on the top.  The only thing that has changed in 28 years is the satellite dish.

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This is the horrible old field behind my old primary school.  I say “horrible” because you would not believe how I romanticised this place when I was living in South Africa and missing England so badly.  Seriously, in my memory, my friends and I were Robin Hood and his band of merry men and this was our forest.  I have come back here several times in the past but I only go into the fields when it is sunny.  It was always sunny there in the late 1970s according to my obviously flawless memory.

Nutgrove Methodist Primary School

This is my old primary school, Nutgrove Methodist.  It was a gorgeous, old quaint building back in the late 1970s and had an ancient stone wall around the front with railings dating back years.  They demolished it in the 1990s to make way for this brick and concrete monstrosity.  I hope that the children in this school feel as welcome, charmed and happy as I felt there though.

Nutgrove Methodist Church

The school was attached to this old church which was in a terrible state of repair the last time we were there.  I see it is looking much better now but I worry about the painted over sign.  Does that mean that the church is being sold?  I hope not.  The chapel was built in 1883.

Nutgrove is full of ancient old walls like this one and the next time I am back, I’ll try to take some better photos for you.  These walls captured my imagination as a young child so it is obvious that my love affair with buildings and architecture was already starting.  I love the moss on them.

This week ahead is going to be a big one hopefully.  I have big ambitions of catching up with all of my blog reading and comments as well as getting back into the groove of blogging regularly again.  Of course, this is also going to be one of the busiest weeks ever at work as I try to catch up again after the year end process.

Underneath all of this activity I am also skilfully avoiding dealing with what was essentially a sad weekend and a possible farewell but we are Up North at Easter time and maybe we’ll get another chance. Fingers crossed.

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11 comments

  1. It's nice to take a trip back to your childhood. I bet some of the buildings look a lot smaller now.

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  2. I like childhood memories somehow as I get older the are more vivid. Since we lived in a village all our young lives very little has changed when I go to visit.

    I even found my initials carved in a tree whose location is similar to your second photo, but you're right it was always sunny!!

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  3. Isn't it fun/poignant going back and seeing these places from the past?! We went to my old elementary school in Montana with our kids, and I had made a mistake of talking about the "big hill" I had to climb to get to it. Even taking into consideration that I was a lot smaller then, it was a very gentle incline! I've never lived that down!

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  4. Ok, I just had to laugh about your Horrible Old Field. It looks very Mr. Rochester-ish in the photo... dark, moody and romantic.

    I tend to romanticise Texas. In other words, I forget how hot and humid it is there 3/4 of the year. And I forget about my terrible allergies. Oh and the mosquitoes and roaches. Ick! To me, Texas is 70-degrees and sun. Now THAT is a fantasy!


    Your farewell sounds terribly sad :-( Hugs and XO to you, my dear.

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  5. ahhh... a trip to memory lane... I had this one yesterday... with some pics... :)

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  6. You're as good as a travel guide, Emm.

    Maybe you should write one. (There's an idea. I only ask for 2% commission)

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  7. I visited my home town of birth several years ago and so much had changed. Older buildings had been renovated, new shopping centers had popped up everywhere, and industry was booming. It just reminded me that I was getting older. Sigh

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  8. Thank you for the tour. Love the church and your old house!

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  9. Thanks Emm for this wonderful pictorial tour to beautiful places of your childhood!
    Betty xx

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  10. @ Ash: Definitely!

    @ AVCr8teur: The church looks smaller but would you believe my house looks the same? maybe if I saw it from the inside...

    @ Mike: Oh, that must be awesome to see your initials like that! I don't feel that any place has retained a piece of me unfortunately, I've moved around too much. Oh, except for my house in South Africa which our good friends bought off us.

    @ Kathy: Hahaha! I can just imagine!

    @ JaPRA: Thank you for your kind words! I don't really romanticise South African weather (I loved summer and hated winter) but I totally do so with the English summer. I never seem to notice how horrible it really is!

    @ Yuri: Hi, thanks for stopping by! Trips down memory lane are good, aren't they?

    @ Cassandra: Heh. I am not good with doing things I have to do though. Like I can spend hours doing research on a topic but completely stall when I am doing it for a course or per deadline. *sigh*

    @ Lauren: Oh, you really should take photos of those things! I would love to see that on one of your blogs one day.

    @ Missy: And thank you for joining me m'dear!

    @ Betty: It is a pleasure - I am glad you enjoyed them!

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