Travelling back to Hull & Beverley has been very much a bittersweet experience for me this last 36 hours. Seeing all the old familiar places and people and how they’ve changed – even in the short time since my last visit – has reminded me of some of the decent times I had in the past.
The journey wasn’t for those reasons, though. Today, we said farewell to one of the few members of my mother’s extended family that I had time for, Cressy – or Cris as most people in Beverley knew her as. Of all the aunts and uncles on my mother’s side, she was the only one for whom we spoke to and kept in reasonably close contact with, and that had been the case for many years – a somewhat shabby argument between the rest of the family and my mother with Cressy saw to that. I have no intention of going into the details, there is no need. My mother and her had always been close and that was to stay the case right up until the last days.
I have no doubt that whatever she’s doing at the moment, she’s organising it and arranging it to work more smoothly, she was like that, a veritable pocket rocket. However, for her memory and her family only, would I dash up from London to show my sympathy today, harsh but unfortunately true, but then I haven’t seen the others in years and I’m not expecting that to change anytime soon.
The fact that Alicia was well enough to join me was a bonus, it gave her a chance to see some of our family. I had not spoken to or seen my cousins for such a long time and I felt that I had to be there today. I’m glad I did, as it gave me the chance to meet them all again. A few of them will no doubt read this, as it posts to Facebook and twitter, and I’ll be very happy if they do. Claire, who I have not seen for many many years, Leslie, Caroline & Louise, all of them who I remember from younger days, visiting Gran in Burton Fleming all those years ago. In fact I remember times before Caroline & Louise were born, but that’s me showing my age, which no doubt their children will find amusing.
We’re tentatively making plans to come back to Beverley before Christmas this year, to spend a little time with them all one weekend, and if nothing else, today will be worth it for that alone. I may have lost touch with them over the years, but I’m hoping to reverse all that. In this modern world, it ought to be easy enough to do.