New memories…

19 Jan 2023

I’ve spent lot of the past few months sorting my late mother’s affairs. She left everything really organised, but it’s still a lot of work. In her house she had 90 years of memories. I don’t mean that she was a hoarder, but she had accumulated a lot of stuff. If something had a good memory she stored it. I found the box of baby shoes, including the shrunk mangled one when a sister decided to help Mummy by popping her dirty shoe in the twin tub boil wash to clean it.

Sorting through the photos I learnt that my father wore a top hat to his wedding, and found a local newspaper cutting, an article explaining that all the children at a primary school had a half day and were taken by coach to see “Miss” emerge from the wedding as “Mrs”, accompanied by a beautiful photo of my mother getting into the car to go to the reception with my father holding the door for her. I wonder if any of the children remember that day.

Amongst the many photos there was one of a man snoozing on a deck chair with his cap pulled down towards his face, I assume to prevent the sun from disturbing his forty winks. I had no idea who it was, but on the back, in my Dad’s scrawl, was his name and the event. The event was illegible, but the name was that of a neighbour who lived across the road from our family home.

I remembered the family - the two boys were part of the gang who played in back gardens up and down the street, so there was always one set of parents who knew where we were. These boys were slightly older than me, so they weren’t part of the core gang, but would occasionally play with us youngsters, probably when they didn’t get a better offer. When I say gang, I don’t mean in the modern sense, more Just William and the Outlaws. I recall a lot of off-ground tag.

I googled the man in the photo and found his obituary. It mentioned his children by name, including a daughter, who was clearly a later arrival. So I googled the children’s names. They had an unusual last name so I immediately hit bingo with the older boy and the girl. I emailed them both to introduce myself and to offer them this rather charming photo of their father.

Within two minutes I received a reply from the daughter, who now lives just 50 miles away. She told me that her stepmother still lives in the old family home. She supplied her own address so I popped the photo in the post to her.

The photo was meaningless to me - just a man who lived across the road. But to his family it will mean so much: their father in repose, enjoying a moment of peace. For the cost of a stamp I gave them a meaningful memory.

Seeing these old photos made me realise how key memories for one person have an entirely different meaning to the next. 

Do you have a story of reuniting somebody with a good memory?


A Moodscope member

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.

Moodscope members seek to support each other by sharing their experiences through this blog. Posts and comments on the blog are the personal views of Moodscope members, they are for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice.

Email us at to submit your own blog post!


You need to be Logged In and a Moodscope Subscriber to Comment and Read Comments