The last day of the year 2021! I wonder what 2022 will bring us? Hopefully much cheer and happiness!
This morning I visited a cousin of mine. She and her husband only live a short distance out of the city, but it has been almost twelve months since I last saw them.
It was great to catch up over a cup of tea and some shortbread and Christmas cake.
We got to talking about the “good old days” when we were children and our different memories of our shared grandmother. She always wore a hat and gloves when going into town, and was quite a stickler for doing things “the proper way.”
We remembered her home and the large section it sat upon. She had two full-size plum trees in the back garden, a large vegetable garden, and a dug-out beneath the house that was used as a garden shed. I can still remember the smell of that place, all dusty and cobwebby and full of shells she had collected over the years.
And then my cousin produced a diary her mother had passed on to her. It was dated December 1899 and was a record of a holiday my grandmother’s mother took when she sailed from Wellington, New Zealand, to Sydney, Australia, and stayed with some of her many relations there.
She had taken her two children with her – my grandmother (then aged 4 years) and my great-uncle (then aged 2 years).
I have spent a happy afternoon reading the account (the words I can decipher, anyway!), and it is intriguing to read about shopping for silk and lace to make a bonnet, catching the train to get around the city, and being met at the station by a cab and two horses.
Her diary entry for today (31 December) reads: “Charlie opened the bottle of champagne for dinner. A sleepy afternoon. I read on the verandah while the children blew bubbles. Still very hot, day and night.”
She could almost have been writing about life as we know it today 😊