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Tuesday, 26 September 2017

The little girl (part-3)

    Meanwhile I had arrived at the station without having paid much attention to things on the way. I was walking in familiar places again for the first time since the War, but I didn't want to go further than was necessary. I didn't want to go upset myself with the sight of streets and houses full of memories from a precious time.



In the train back I saw Mrs Dorling in front of me again as I had the first time I met her. It was the morning after the day my mother had told me about her. I had got up late and, coming downstairs, I saw my mother about to see someone out. A woman with a broad back. 

'There is my daughter,' said my mother. She beckoned to me. The woman nodded and picked up the suitcase under the coat-rack. She wore a brown coat and a shapeless hat. 

'Does she live far away?' I asked, seeing the difficult she had going out of the house with the heavy case. 

'In Marconi street,' said my mother. 'Number 46. Remember that.'

I had remembered it. But I had waited a long time to go there. Initially after the Liberation I was absolutely not interested in all that stored stuff, and naturally I was also rather afraid of it. Afraid of being confronted with things that had belonged to a connection that no longer existed; which were hidden away in cupboards and boxes and waiting in vain until they were put back in their place again; which had endured all those years because they were 'things.'

But gradually everything became more normal again. Bread was getting to be a lighter colour, there was a bed you could sleep in unthreatened, a room with a view you were more used to glancing at each day. And one day I noticed I was curious about all the possession that must still be at that address. I wanted to see them, touch remember. 





To be continued...... 

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