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Dinner with my father

Recently I had dinner with my father. It has been a long time since we last saw each other, certainly long before my cancer was diagnosed, and I think he must have been anxious to see how I was getting on. The food was nothing much to write about, but we had a fine old time reminiscing about past times.

Those reminiscences were brought on by my recalling the photos fro Africa that I posted here quite a while ago. I mentioned that my step father had found a set of slides in the attic, some of which were the originals of the prints you’ve already seen. I remembered so little about the time in Kenya that it was good to hear a few stories. In one of the slides Alan, my father, was proudly leaning against our car, an old-fashioned grey VW Beetle. Alan said that it was a 1951 model, so already old in 1966 or ’67 when the photo was taken. My favourite story of the evening was about that car. I was four years old or so at the time, and it was the subject of my every conversation.

“Our car turned over,” I would say, and it was obvious that the event had made a great impression on me. But it turned out that my mother had a remedy,

“… and nobody was hurt.” she would tack onto my sentence. After a few repetitions, I learned to parrot her phrase too, and would say,

“Our car turned over and nobody was hurt.”

A triumph of ingenious parenting! It was a fun evening. I hope it won’t be so long before the next one.