As I get older nostalgia kicks in. I think it probably happens to us all, and of course we do tend to miss out the unpleasant bits and perhaps embroider the good bits. That is unless something really unpleasant happened to us during childhood, when it is a different matter.
I was reading about the death of an old man in Suffolk yesterday. He was well into his nineties and he had been a Wheelwright. Now that is a trade which was once so important in the farming world and has now more or less died out except for the one or two who still remain working in farming museums etc.
I suppose the advent of the tractor sounded the beginning of its death knell. The farmer has an old Fergie (in fact he has got two or three but only one which is complete and actually working - he pushes the muck out into the midden with it every morning.) But his 'best' tractor is only three years old. It has two seats (so the little boy next door can have rides in it quite happily), a radio, a heater - in fact luxury.
But as for wheelwrights - no need for them at all.
I remember one particulary with affection. I may have got the facts wrong, because I am speaking of seventy odd years ago, but I dearly loved his yard.
He had his workshop in the village of East Markham in The Dukeries of Nottinghamshire, where my Aunt Kate lived. I used to go along with my Dad to visit him when we were at my Aunt's - I suspect my Dad dearly loved that yard too. It was littered with old wheels, shafts, piles of wood and the odd carthorse wandering about in what was really a sort of paddock.
There was always a smell of wood and of paint. The wheelwright I read about lived in Suffolk, where traditionally carts had blue bodies and Venetian and Chinese red wheels. I don't know whether these colours were nationwide or whether each county had its own colour scheme - I suspect the latter.
And it was on top of a load of hay in one of his carts that I saw the Flying Scotsman go hurtling past on the London to Scotland line.
The Flying Scotsman is in the News again this week' having been restored it is about to make a historic journey from London again to the railway museum in York. Some things never change.