"Dear Grandad" Happy Christmas

cuckoo innFrom you to me - journal of a lifetime

It arrived as part of my Christmas present from my then eight year old granddaughter Daisy in 2011. It intrigued me from the start. The contents were a series of questions aimed at getting me to record, in my own words, the key events in my life and memories that would give my granddaughter a better understanding of the life and times of her grandad and other members of the family.

It was not a project to be rushed or tackled lightly. Each page, each question needed a fair bit of thought. I add this so that you, the reader, do not judge me too harshly when I admit that, two years on, I am still to finish the task !

The preface to the book sets the challenge:

"Dear Grandad,

Here is a gift from me to you......for you to give to me.

When we are children we are always asking questions.....well I now have some more for you.

Please could you answer them in the way only you know how and then give the book back to me.

There might be a couple of questions that you prefer not to answer, so don't worry, just answer the others as well as you can.....I won't mind.

People say we all have at least one book in us, and this will be one of yours.

The story of you and me that I will treasure forever."

My main concerns at the outset were that my handwriting may not be sufficiently legible and that, once recollections are committed to paper, inaccuracies that become clear later on will not be easy to correct. So, like all silver surfers I turned to my laptop. On this the tale could be told and recorded in good old Microsoft Word, in a series of answers and statements, each of which could then be printed on address labels and the labels inserted into the journal.

There is plenty of space within the journal for photos or copies of important letters or press cuttings (reproduced by scanning into the laptop), and I managed to source those little, sticky corner mounts - which I had thought might now be well out of fashion - from John Lewis.

So, as I say, I have paced myself and have tried to answer the questions honestly and as interestingly as possible. It's often meant a bit of research in the family archives and a few surprises have inevitably turned up. Completion is in sight and I'm looking forward to Daisy's reaction.

If any other Siverlink Member thinks they would like to have a go the journal was produced by 'from you to me ltd' in 2008.

Peter Pinnell

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