Personal and undiluted views
Stourhead

899 days ago

Photo Article - walking around Stourhead with the Mrs and Joshua, the end of the Booker family memory lane

And so to the end point of the trip down Booker family memory lane with the Mrs and Joshua - a vist to the gardens at Stourhead just over the Dorset border in Wiltshire.  Do you want to save £17 on an adult ticket by joining the National Trust said the lady? Er...

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963 days ago

Photo Article: climbing Glastonbury Tor with the Mrs and Joshua

As I reflected in my weekend Tomograph newsletter, our time in the South West is drawing to a close. God willing and with fingers crossed, by mid April, the Mrs, Joshua and I will be in the Grim North. And there is thus a determination to enjoy our last couple of months here revisiting places we know well and going to see a few things which we have never seen before.

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2522 days ago

The deaths of my mother and aunt

The nature of my mother’s death has been raised by certain “admirers” of mine on Bulletin Boards, the circumstances of my Aunt’s death I have mentioned en passant here before. There are no secrets in the era of the interweb. Both deaths were mentioned in an article by their brother, my Uncle Chris (Booker) in the Daily Mail last week. Slowly I read it early on Saturday morning as it brought a number of thoughts to the surface. Matters not suppressed just forgotten or not reflected upon for a long while.  My mother killed herself. My aunt was murdered. There you have it. A shocking couple of sentences.

My mother died when I was eight and my sisters seven and five. She had become terribly depressed in that amazing sun drenched year of 1976 and – as I discovered only later – first tried to end her life at the height of summer while the rest of us were out walking. My father found her, revived her but thereafter she was confined to various hospitals in Northamptonshire, Banbury and finally in Oxford, the City where she had studied, met my father and where I was born. I saw her once that autumn at the Trout at Godstow and she seemed happy. She clearly was not and within weeks she had hanged herself. I remember being taken out of class by a lovely teacher who was almost in tears as she told me that my mother was dead. I cannot remember how I felt or what happened next. I did not find out how she died until I was fourteen.

Not having a mother was a little unusual in those days

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