I watched one of my best friends say Goodbye to her Gran this morning, I found it hard to fight back the tears myself as I listened to the tales from this incredible ladies life. I reflected on my time as a child, spending weekends on the farm with Steph and her Grandparents, such fond memories which feel so close that I could almost touch them. How the World has changed since the days of climbing haystacks and baking on the aga, it all seemed so simple back then.
It took me back to losing my own Grandparents, all of which have sadly passed, I wondered if like me Steph had a favourite, I had a sneaky suspicion that if she did, it would definitely have been Win, she was a woman and a half!
Win was the practical type, never one to dilly dally, she had a firm belief in an honest day’s work and was damn sure to bestow this upon those around her including her grandchildren and their pals. I remember being terrified of ever sleeping in whilst sleeping over at the farm, a habit which I would happily partake in when at home but on the farm it was early to rise and be sure to make the best of the day ahead.
One morning after a particularly late night partaking in girly gossip before eventually settling down to sleep, I woke to find the bed opposite empty, I wondered if Steph had woken and was downstairs or whether she had just nipped to the bathroom. Whilst stretching to wake I casually glanced at the clock expecting it to be just past seven o’clock or round about that time. I was rather shocked to say the least when I saw the two hands on the clock face both pointing to twelve. I jolted out of bed and dashed down the corridor shame faced for sleeping so heavily. Each and every clock that I passed confirmed my fear, I had overslept like a lazy teenager (which is precisely what I was back then). I was mortified, how on earth could I let myself sleep until dinner time at the one place that saw two six o’clock’s in one day?
I ran into the kitchen to apologise for having slept in so late, it was empty and silent all apart the ticking from yet another large clock also reading just past noon, I felt terrible imagining what they must all think of me for sleeping so late
It did seem rather odd given the time that nobody was to be seen, usually by noon Stephs Gran would be serving up platefuls of delicious food which would usually be followed by her World famous Sticky Toffee Pudding. I swear to god I can still taste Wins sticky toffee pudding just thinking about it.
I glanced around the room wondering whether they had gone out to work on the farm, that was when I spotted the digital clock by the oven reading 8.10am. I began walking around the house checking the time on the other gadgets which back then were limited to the TV and the VHS. I had been duped! It was just past 8 and whilst I may have slept in slightly it paled in comparison to sleeping till noon.
Just as reality washed over me and my heart rate finally began to slow, I turned around to find both Steph and her Gran in fits of laughter watching my bewildered expression as I put two and two together. They must have had so much fun planning, plotting and changing an entire houseful of clocks together, they certainly ‘got me’ that’s for sure.
Steph and I still chuckle over their practical joke to this day despite it being years ago. I stood there today watching a church full of people mourn a wonderful woman and I wished that we really could play with time, turn it back and return to a time when things seemed far simpler.
As it is, time continues to tick on and life changes as the time goes by. Over time we grow into adults and we learn that life is a journey, sometimes its smooth sailing and at other times we encounter rough terrain. No matter how many years go by, there is always something new to overcome, something new to learn and new memories to be made upon the way.
I am grateful that I had the chance to meet Win, to listen and to learn from her wisdom along the road, it was a pleasure.