…..'A sense of humour lends you poise, it gives you balance and it helps you to bend without breaking'…..

(HH Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda)

Menory Lane...wandering the back-files

As I feel the loss my dear friend Aitch has undergone this week, I have found myself thinking back to school days. 

I came in late to Claydon Secondary Modern (now known as Claydon High) School.  My junior years were served out at Whitton, which was within walking/cycling distance of our home on Norwich Road, Ipswich.  I didn't start there...but more on that another post.

At 11 I had qualified for Grammar School streaming, but for reasons I am not entirely clear about, mother favoured the more technically focused Thurlstane High (now also renamed rather grandiosely as Ormiston Endeavour Academy). At the time father was a weekend dad due to his rising through the ranks of engineering and needing to be on site.

It was this same rise which resulted in a home move to the more rural Henley village.  A large detached home with big garden. It is still looking good. Took this drive-by when visiting with Aitch after Christmas last year.  

There are a lot more cars than the street ever had in my memory - two car families?  Stay at home kids with vehicles?  ...

It was a two mile cycle ride to the new school.  There was a bus and in winter we sometimes took that.  Occasionally mum would drive us.

This move took place on the third term of my first year at high school.  I had just turned 12 years. It could have been difficult, but in all honestly I had not enjoyed  my sojourn at Thurlstane. Whitton had been fun and my reports showed promise. The high school, though, was in a tough area and I just didn't make friends.

Claydon had a policy of 'buddying' newcomers and my pal was EC.  By the end of that term Aitch, Our Friend and the Kook had become part of our group and bonds were made.

As it turned out, whilst all were good mates, Aitch became the 'best'.  We do that don't we? Somehow we find folk as close as any family to us.  Like sisters, we have not always seen eye-to-eye, but have always been accepting and caring of each other.  It is due to Aitch and the gang that I had a pretty good time at Claydon - and even the Bully Girl couldn't spoil it all.  We won't mention the bike shed incident.  Or the art room attack. Not here anyway.

I have been blessed indeed with very good friends in life and Aitch is certainly the oldest of those. Even when there have been months or years without word, we just pick up where we left off.  It is a solid friendship of the kind that must be treasured and acknowledged.

Especially at this time.


  1. Fascinating post and sorry about the loss of your friend ~ it is never easy to lose a 'piece of our life' ~ lots of healing distant reiki hugs to you and great photos ~ xoxo

    artmusedog and carol (A Creative Harbor)

  2. Hari OM
    For casual visitors I should make it clear that the link will show 'the loss' was not my own but Aitch's and I have written this in response to the fact all one can do is 'be there'; the pain is every one's own to handle.

    Thank you @Carol, for your wishes however.

  3. This kind of friendship is a treasure beyond price, Yam. Now you're firmly anchored back in the auld country you will both enjoy strengthening that bond even more.

  4. I have a little sampler on my wall: "There's no friend like an old friend" given to me by my oldest and dearest friend in the world. They are good to have.

  5. I just found out about Lady Vicki and it saddens me, she was such a lovely little girl. Times like this do tend to make us reminisce about friendships. My condolences to Aitch.

  6. So sorry to read that Lady Vicki's long life has come to an end. After reading about the fit in Scotland, and remembering the course of events with my dear Hamish, I feared the worst. But what a grand age she reached. She must have been well cared for and loved. I've been over and left Aitch a comment.
    Best wishes,

  7. Hari Om
    Thank you to all my unseen friends - connection doesn't have to be in physical presence but in spirit. That unnameable element which causes us to return once and again...

  8. I too had a lifelong friend that I met when I as 12. There were ups and downs in our relationship but we would be there for each other when needed. I miss her very much as I do other close friends I had. When one is in their 80s there are so many memories of those that are gone so hold on to your precious friend.


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