Thursday, 1 February 2018

Letter to a Granddaughter - Keys to the Future.

Dear Granddaughter,
Last weekend, for the first time, I showed you part of my blog - some of the part that was written for you, and has been written for you from before your birth. The time is coming when you will be able to read the Letters to a Granddaughter for yourself, and I want you to know that they are here.
I read this as a bed-time story, and you laughed and laughed, helpless with mirth at the glimpse of yourself nearly three years ago.
"Read it again, Granny, that is so funny! Read it again....."
So here, in the hope of delighting you in the future, is a glimpse of yourself at five-and-a-bit, during a weekend at my house.

"Can I use those keys?" you asked.
"They're part of your Granddad's collection of old church keys," I said. "They don't actually work on anything here."
"I know," you said. "I need them to sort out my future. It might be saving the planet or working in a church. You put them on the table, like this. Big ones first, then the little ones, and that one's really little.......and that one's a bit funny, but it should work all right. You line them up, like this...... Then you say 'Eeny meeny miney mo, catch a tiger by his toe, if he shouts, let him go, eeny, meeny, miney mo.' And oh look, it comes out as working in a church. I guessed it might be that. Or saving the planet. It's interesting though, isn't it?"
"It is," I said.

"It's nearly time for the Animal Ball," you said, sorting through the box of model animals. "These animals have been in their cages far too long, It's time they came out for a party. We'll put the food over here so they won't all get it at once, and just in case they start eating each other we'll have the little ones under the table. Like this. We'll put them in groups, so the carnivores are further away. And the vegetarians.....have we got any vegetarians? There are some dinosaurs in here, some of them are vegetarians. Oh, we'll need a special space for the nocturnals, I hadn't thought of that! Do we have a night party or a day party? And  what about the aquarium creatures? Oh. This is going to be a problem. I know, I'll put them back in their cages and give them their food and they can stay there and listen to music. That will be good for them, won't it?"
"They'll probably be happy with that", I said.
"It's not easy, being a zoo keeper," you said. "I think I'll go and check on things in the garden now."

"I can do amazing things on this swing," you said. "I can do a balancing act like this with my head nearly on the ground. Look at me........just look at me!"
"I'm looking," I said," But maybe dragging your hair in the mud isn't the best idea."
"It's a lovely feeling," you said. "Really lovely when you see things upside down. Everything looks good upside down, but I'm going to play shops next. I've got real money in that tin. Ow, ow! Can you get this stuff out of my hair? Ow - it's pulling a bit now."

"This money came out of my archaeology dig," you said. (The archaeology dig has been going on for some time under the hedge. Odd coins appear at times, as do bits of 'Roman' blue and white pottery.) "I think I've got at least a hundred pounds now, or probably just a few pounds, but it doesn't matter because things in my shop are really cheap, and anyway I get them free. Would you like an ice-cream?"
"It's a bit cold for ice-cream," I said. "I'd quite like a toasted cheese sandwich."
"Well," you said. "I don't think I have cheese or a toaster or even a sandwich. I'm planning a shop with games to play and ice-cream, so what game would you like to play next? I've got skittles and tennis balls and a skipping rope and bean-bags to balance on your head. ....and oh look! I've got these bats with velcro sticky pads -  so come on, come on -  we'll play with these next!."
"Oh, goodie," I said.
So we did.

Thank you for another magical weekend, for including me in your games and giving me another great view of the world.

With love from Granny.


gz said...

Moments of gold dust

Relatively Retiring said...

gz: thank you for your comment. I hope you're still managing to enjoy all sorts of weathers up there.

Zhoen said...

I loved being upside down. Used to take a mirror, walk around the house looking down at it pointed at the ceiling, and imagine I was walking upside down on the ceiling.

Thank her for reminding me about this.

Relatively Retiring said...

Zhoen: thank you, I'll pass the message on. I have fond but slightly sickening memories of swinging upside down, especially from a tree branch which gave a certain frisson to the experience. From the Granny standpoint I'd be terrified if I saw E. or Little Brother doing that.

pohanginapete said...

Delightful. :-) What a wonderful gift.

Relatively Retiring said...

P.Pete: thank you. Non-stop comment, questioning and observation keeps me on my toes, and Little Brother is also shaping up well, conversationally. Whew!
I miss your blogs.

Jenny Woolf said...

Wonderful to read this. Your granddaughter has a good vocabulary for her age, and a very interesting way of thinking about the world. What comes over is the impression of a keenly observant and enthusiastic person who happens right now to be fascinated as well in the things five year olds like - such as hanging upside down.

Relatively Retiring said...

Jenny: thank you for your kind comment. I appreciate being able to share her enthusiasms and observations. She's great company.

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Pam said...

Oh, that is so LOVELY! She sounds a very bright little person.

Pam said...

Oh, that is so LOVELY! She sounds a very bright little person.

Pam said...

Oops, sorry that that appeared twice...