Tuesday, 8 January 2008

Photos, Memories and De-Cluttering

I have always been an avid photographer and over the years my collection has become massive and crept into more albums, boxes, drawers..... With the New Year I decided to de-clutter and get rid of at least half of them. I started that mammoth task over the weekend and it is on-going.

As I looked through them they brought back all kinds of memories. Some of the first ones were of a school trip we had to Stratford on Avon. Until then I'd thought Shakespeare was boring and went on the trip just to get away with my friends - I'd never been on holiday without my parents. But much to my surprise I sat transfixed in the theatre, as I watched those words come to life so eloquently. All life was there on the stage, laughter, tears, love, treachery, jealousy, magic, poetry, music. That trip gave me more than I would ever have guessed - it opened up the world of great writing and theatre for me, a love I have to this day.

Schoolfriends, and two of them are still close and dear friends, that's special.

Photos, photos, photos. Pictures from my adventurous times when I worked abroad in France and Canada. Looking back I was really brave to go overseas like that alone to work, at the time though it was just something I felt I had to do. Ahh the courage of youth! I'm glad I did do it, now I can look back and say I did do something different with my life in my younger days and not have the "if only" regrets.

More photos. People who have passed away, my mother looking young and very beautiful, dear friends Joan and Ann, taken before their time.

Boyfriends, wonder where they are now?

Lots of photos of U2 on stage and off stage, part of the backdrop to my life for 24 years. And through my interest in them I've travelled far and wide, had many adventures and met people from all over the world. Some have become real friends, people I would never have met if it hadn't been for our mutual love of U2.

Holidays, day trips, pets, friends, family, the backdrop to my life in photos. But one photo stuck out for me. I can't even remember it being taken. It's photo of me and my fellow student nurses taken in 1980 just before we qualified as Staff Nurses. I'm the small one in the front with the tinted glasses and Purdy haircut!

It was quite a poignant photo for me as it marks the beginning of my career as a nurse. And now here I am in 2008 in the year of my (early!) retirement from nursing. The beginning and the end. I was quite surprised that it struck me like that as I am looking forward to retiring. Maybe it's moreso the realisation that a whole generation has passed since the photo was taken, and how quickly life passes by.

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