Tuesday, 17 March 2009

I Remember it Well........







Film buffs will remember the film - Gigi I think it was - where Maurice Chevalier and Hermione Gingold (so you know the film wasn't made yesterday!) had been lovers many years ago and then met again. They recalled a date they had had - the song was called "I Remember it Well" - and they differed on every memory



Memory has a habit of playing tricks with us. Ironically, a place which becomes prominent in the imagination is often the least substantial when it comes down to trying to remember hard facts.



So it is with Barmouth..........
It was around 1980, Boxing Day, unseasonably warm and sunny. Three of us - or was it four - made a sudden decision to drive to Barmouth for the day. After the Christmas Day feast there would have been plenty of turkey for sandwiches, Christmas cake and fruit and cheese for afters; there might even have beena bottle of wine. Anyhow - the picnic was packed and we set off.
We reached Barmouth easily because I expect everyone else was at home watching Boxing Day television. The roads were empty - we trundled along - maybe we sang carols as we went.
Barmouth beach was empty except for one man and his dog in the far distance.
The sun shone, the tide was out, the beach was sheltered. We leaned up against a rock and ate our picnic, we took off our shoes and socks and had a paddle in the sea. Then we came home.
So why, I ask my readers, does that day stand out in my memory as a Golden Day - a Special Day. Why - every Boxing Day - do I find cause to mention it and to reminisce about such an ordinary event about which I can actually remember very little - maybe only the man and dog on the beach and the paddling?
Well it does add weight to the adage that "a moment enjoyed is never wasted!"
Do you have a Golden Day Memory?



25 comments:

Coastcard said...

Did you see Barmouth last night at the end of the Railway Walk with Julia Bradbury (BBC2) from Dolgellau in North Wales?

jinksy said...

School was finally over; we caught a bus which said 'Worlds End', bought a ticket to the end of the line, ate a pic-nic in a sun lit field while we sat in the lower branched of a tree and talked about 'the future'! How gold can it get?!

jinksy said...

Botheration - branches. The gold dust must have got in my eyes...

Cathy said...

I love Gigi! One of my golden moments is sweet and kinda creepy. I was walking with my two girls when they were small. Hannah would have been 5 and Kate 2. Kate was in the stroller and I was holding Hannah's hand. Hannah looked up at me and said "I remember when you were little and I was big and I held you hand like this along time ago" and then she started half whistling just like my great grand mother always did. It made me cry and she comforted me. Scared the crap out of me. It was then I believed in reincarnation.

Derrick said...

Hello Weaver,

Oh, Hermione and Maurice! I've loved that song, from the very first hearing. The poignancy I think!

I can recall a simple lunch, eaten al fresco at a small restaurant in the Cape in South Africa. Nothing special about the day but the squid (or calamare) was so tender and delicious, I never forget it. And all other squid dishes are compared!

Poet in Residence said...

I remember we went on holiday to Scotland. There was mum, dad, us 4 kids in one car and in the other car were some other relatives including one of my uncles whose hobby was photography. When drove over Rannoch Moor and we got to Glencoe we saw a Scotsman in a kilt at the roadside playing bagpipes. And so we stopped and my uncle asked if he could take a photo of the bagpiper. "Sure. Where would you like me to stand. Here? Or here perhaps?"
Finally the photo was taken. Then we got back in the cars and were about to drive off when the bagpiper said to my uncle, "You have forgotten something". Uncle looked around, "I don't think so." "Yes," said the other to everyone's surprise,"that'll be half a croon!"
(two shillings and sixpence).
Did he pay? Of course he did.

Gramma Ann said...

One of my favorite movies is "Gigi" and I love hearing the two sing "I Remember It Well."

The golden moment that immediately popped into my head was a long time ago when I was about 14 years old. It was the day after school left out for the summer on June 2, 1954. My girlfriend and I and my sisters went swimming for the day and picnicked, and had a wonderful time sunning and playing around. No school the next day meant, no homework to worry about. It was just a wonderful time and memory.

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

A sunny day in mid-July, when I and my dearly departed pal, Frank, paused in fishing the Stillwater River for smallmouth bass. We climbed the bank, sat in a patch of remnant prairie (of which there are a few still left hereabouts) bluestem, and shared a simple lunch of cheese, summer sausage, apples, and water from our flasks. Afterwards, we lay back for a short snooze…only to be interrupted by several ruby-throat hummingbirds, no bigger than your thumb, like green iridescent jewels whirring a foot above our noses as they investigated these strange, recumbent creatures in the tall grass.

What a golden, unforgettable day!

Heather said...

I was about 8 and ill with a sore throat and cold so unable to go to the pantomime, Sleeping Beauty. I was very upset and left in the care of my lovely grandmother. To cheer me up, she fetched out her tabletop handle driven sewing machine, found a flanelette sheet and bits of lace and made me the most beautiful nightdress I had ever seen. It was probably thrown together and was certainly made quickly, but I went to bed more than content and thought it was wonderful.

Coastcard said...

I remember a very happy day in the hayfield, making houses from the bales (a bit like yellow igloos!). The scent was beautiful. We then clambered up into the hayloft, and played with the coloured strips that sealed the sacks, weaving them into 'fronds' that we could shake around. It reminds me a bit of weaving in and out of the maypole on May Day at my school in Kent.

Rowan said...

I know exactly what you mean about this - I have several Golden Day memories from various times of my life, I call them memory pictures. I can run them through my mind like a film,a picnic in a bluebell wood with my mum when I was about 5, my wedding day, an outing to Peveril Castle on a wonderful August day when my children were young and several more. From what people say I don't think everyone has this ability but I'm really glad that I do because those happy days are always with me.

Arija said...

Maybe there was just a feeling of happiness to the day that made it so special.
Yes I have a golden moment that I probably will think of with my last thought. Years ago when my now 50 year old daughter was 17 and we lived on Mt.Lofty before the encroachment of civilization, we went along the steep fire tracks. She riding her grey mare called George and wearing a bright yellow shirt and jeans, her long hair flying behind her. Our beloved German Shepherd was part of the party. The sun was just setting 700m below lighting up the stems of the Eucalypts like candles and lending a magical light to dog, horse and girl cantering along the fire track with her sun painted red hair streaming behind her. There was so much life and sheer exuberance and beauty about that scene that it is indellibly etched on my memory.

Dave King said...

Can't really claim to be a film buff, but I do recall Gigi very well. I also remember B armouth with great affection, too. Thanks for reigniting those two memories.

The Weaver of Grass said...

No Coastcard - it isn't on up here I don't think - pity thought because it might have stirred up a few forgotten facts.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Pure gold Jinksy! Oh the heady days when you could catch a bus to somewhere with such an evocative name! We used to catch a bus to go to a dance in the village hall at a village called Wasps Nest!

The Weaver of Grass said...

Cathy - those kind of moments don't happen to everyone - I have a friend who had a similar experience. Those of us who have never experienced it find it hard to credit - but my friend convinced me.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Tender squid Derrick? Have never heard those two words in the same sentence before - I do hope it is not just in your golden memory that it was tender - I think maybe people often overcook it.
Glad I reminded you of the occasion though.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Poet - your story really made the farmer roar with laughter (anything involved with money has this effect (he is a true Yorkshireman!))
Glad I made you think of the memory.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Gramma Ann - love your memory - have similar ones myself - one of the joys of getting older is that the number of things we have in our memory to recall gets to be a longer list!

The Weaver of Grass said...

Scribe - what a picture you paint of the scene - there is a poem in there waiting to be let out.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Heather - maybe that is where your love of craft work began. Lovely memory.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Coastcard - I like the fact that you have included scent in your memory - smell is such a powerful jogger of memory, isn't it?

The Weaver of Grass said...

Rown - if not everyone has the knack then we are truly the lucky ones.

The Weaver of Grass said...

What a wonderful memory Arija - it would make the most joyous painting.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Two memories for the price of one Dave. The pleasure's all mine.