These jottings are basically designed for myself and no- one else. It has been an exercise in exploring the rarely visited parts of my memory. I started by simply putting down what I could remember. But then when things were vaguely remembered my curiosity got the better of me and I sought to find out what had actually happened. For example, I could remember the death my Uncle Geoffrey who suffered muscular dystrophy.

My memory said my brother Steve was not around when this happened. It took me a long time to find out the death date for Geoff. However, in the end it turned out to be April 1961 when I was four and a half years old. My brother Steve was born in December 1961. When I became a young teenager, I noticed that good things in this life never last and that events and relationships keep on moving on relentlessly. It is probably indulgent but I also thought that some unknown great thing to do with the universe was going to happen in my lifetime.

I don’t know how many people have that thought -probably many. It was based on the self- centred view that I was looking out from a body. Maybe it was a good guess as I subsequently became a Son of God and have become aware of the coming of the Lord. I also wanted to give my kids some idea of how different life was 50-60 years ago. Looking back, I see that I have had quite a blessed life. I had a stable family life where we did lots of things together as a family; TV and cinema, football, cricket, running, “pretend gymnastics”, car racing, fishing, yabbying, picnics, and camping. I saw that my parents cared for us.

The fact that I experienced almost identical Xmas rituals from 1964 to 1978 says it all about that stability. I feel blessed too in being able to hold down a teaching job for the last 34 years. Our family wasn’t perfect. We used to have as kids lots of fights (it was very handy to be the oldest and the strongest and so I never lost a fight but I didn’t start many either) Mum and Dad also used to have arguments.

However, no-one ever held grudges. It was all over when it was over. Mum talked too much but that is another story. Becoming a Christadelphian has enhanced that sense of peace and stability. It has given me a better perspective on the whole of life. In my 38 years in the faith I have gone from being shy lad to becoming a talker. I have gone from being a fearful person to a calm person. I have gone from a nobody to a somebody by the grace of God.

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