Little legacy is a remembrance project, a positive and creative place, to celebrate small things handed down by predecessors.
My paternal grandparents lived in the midlands. We used to go to stay with them for a week once a year when myself and my brother were small.
I have very few but extremely precious memories from this time of my life. Especially the times when it was just me, mum and dad. I would have been about two. I adored my granddad.
He was a ‘proper’ granddad. Old, cuddly, funny and he let me get up to mischief. If I concentrate I can still hear his voice, telling me a joke.
I loved going to stay with my grandparents. My granddads passion was his garden. They lived in a bungalow in the middle of a plot of land and there he created the most magical garden I have ever seen. It was literally bursting with flowers and plants. He created small, secret pathways for me to explore and I remember it all feeling so magical. I would play along these secret paths for hours, under the shade of the dark leaves and bright blooms, surrounded by the sweet scent of the flowers.
When I emerged from my imagination, I would toddle out of my hideaway and go looking for my granddad. He was never far away. He would sweep me up in his arms for a cuddle, tickle me, and then put me back on my feet, taking my hand and leading me back to the main part of the garden to pick me a big bunch of flowers.
He would always pick me the same selection. Montbretia and hydrangeas. Then I would toddle around the garden, clutching my bouquet, helping him plant seeds and listening to him telling me how things grow. I thought he was magic. He thought I was a little princess. I felt like one.
My granddad died years ago, but every time I see montbretias I remember him and remember his cuddles and the magic of his garden.
When Boo was born, my dad presented me a plant pot full of soil, with one little green shoot poking out. Montbretia. ‘That bulb was from your granddads garden’ he said. ‘I saved it for you’.
So now, at the end of my garden is a perfect memory of both my granddad and my childhood.
When Boo grows up I will tell her about her great granddads magical garden and hope she is as entranced by my memories as I was by being there.