Posts tagged ‘Sister 1’

October 18, 2012

they’re nothing to do with me


One of my sister T.’s memories about going holiday with the family was when they missed the overnight train from Milan to Paris. I wasn’t there, although it feels like my memory. My mother and four children, including 3 small ones, were waiting on a train platform late at night to catch another night train to Paris. They wouldn’t have had couchettes to look forward to, or even booked places, they wouldn’t have had any food or water, or anything that would offer any comfort, since mum would have been in charge of packing. There would have been luggage all over the place, and no obvious way of transporting so much with so many small children. At least one of the small children would have been crying. They would all have looked scruffy. Not dirty exactly, but unkempt. T remembers a man looking askance at them all and remarking to his companion “I hope I’m not expected to travel with that bunch of gypsies.” T remembers stepping away from the family, not wishing to be associated. I wonder how old she would have been – 16?

October 17, 2012

a girl called Blessing

London, August 2011. I meet Blessing (real name), who’s about 8, in the playground that T.’s flat overlooks. She’s pretty, plump, has lots of beaded braids, wears pink with butterfly motifs. She’s chasing around the car-park after a large fluffywhite seed, like the ones from a dandelion clock, and when she catches it, she gives it to T., saying, “This is for you, it’s a wish, don’t lose it, keep it safe!” T. puts it in her pocket. Blessing catches one for me too, and it’s at the pocket of my moleskine notebook, should I ever need it.