Saturday, 1 February 2020

Two Butterflies and Two Empty Chairs

I feel I neglect this blog terribly, yet always return at some stage to add more. My other more cared for blog can be found HERE 

Me, looking sceptical outside a private residence inside a public park - the Oamaru Gardens to be exact. I was wondering what it would be like to live in the middle of a Botanical Garden. My cousin took the photo. We thought the house with its verandah, reminded us a bit of our grandparent's old house. Long gone now. 

These deep red glads I saw in the Oamaru Gardens, live up to their name and gladden my heart, reminding me very much of my mother's garden when we were kids. 

Petunias remind me of a children's story I remember from my childhood - Petunia the Goose.

My cousin and her parents gathered at the Gardens - a mid-point to our respective homes - to remember our Aunty Lorna, who died two years ago, as well as other members of that line who have died. My Aunty there with us that day, is the only one left of her siblings. I asked her how that felt. She admitted it felt strange. She found it especially difficult when she was trying to remember some family fact or story and the realisation that she had no-one left to ask anymore, really hit home.

While we sat in a sunny, sheltered spot, surrounded by the beauty of the Gardens we noticed that by chance, we had brought too many outdoor seats, resulting in there being two empty chairs. I pointed out how it was like having my mother and Aunty Lorna sitting there with us. As we talked, I kept imagining them chipping in.

At one point, I noticed a butterfly - for me butterflies often show up when I am thinking of, or missing, someone who has passed on. Suddenly there were two butterflies fretting above the flowers. Like two sisters, or the past and the present intermingling, tangling, making their presence felt.


Avus said...

I, too, have that experience of not being able to ask questions to those now dead (Mum and Dad).
Also the butterflies. One morning I saw a beautiful and rare Peacock sunning itself on the garden path. It let me get real close before flying off to a tree. My phone rang in my pocket. It was the wife of an old friend telling me he had died during the night!

Kay Cooke said...

That is amazing about the butterfly. I really think there's something in it. I remember, years ago now, while waiting for the bus to go to a friend's funeral, a butterfly hovering close. At the time I felt it was symbolic.
It's always sad to be reminded of the gap that people who have died leave behind - a gap that cannot be filled except by happy memories.

Kay Cooke said...

Avus : Not sure if you'll pick this up, but something I cam across which I thought may interest you:

A new exhibition, curated by our good friend Nick Hand, opens tomorrow at the Devon Guild of Craftsmen, Bovey Tracey.

Nick has curated this exhibition of stories recorded from his travels across Britain, Ireland, Naples and New York’s Hudson Valley, mostly on a bicycle. Starting in 2009, Nick cycled over 6,000 miles around the coast of Britain and Ireland, making over 100 films of people he met along the way. Since that journey, he has cycled 500 miles along the Hudson Valley; visited craftspeople across the UK as photographer and judge for the Balvenie Craft Awards; cycled around the coast of the Isle of Skye; visited heritage craftspeople in Naples; and, most recently, cycled from Land’s End to John o’Groats on the printing bike, stopping in places known for making one particular thing and collecting stories for the people dedicated to those crafts and trades.

Clocking Out

 I have been neglecting this blog for some months. I think perhaps I should face facts and accept that it is indeed time to retire this blog...