Life just flies by doesn’t it, with kids and their activities, shopping, working, busy on the house. We rarely have a free weekend. Scrap that – we never have a free weekend. There we were with a whole two days stretched ahead of us with…. nothing….in the calendar.
So we planned to do something I had wanted to do for a long time – go to South Wales to visit my relatives. I cannot remember the last time we went, it was sometime after my father died, but before I started my challenges, so probably about 4 or 5 years ago.
My family in South Wales were my father’s family. His Mum (my Nan) was welsh but moved to England to marry my Grandad. She has lots of brother and sisters who in turn had families, so I have a lot of relatives there but regret to say that I am not in touch with many. I have hooked up with a couple on facebook but unfortunately we haven’t been able to find a mutual free weekend.
But there was one lady, I could go and see and she was very special to me, childhood visits to Wales with my parents always meant a visit to my Aunty Joyce.
She isn’t a blood relative, she was my Nan’s best friend. They met when she was a WREN in Malvern and my Nan was in service (I think this was before my Nan became a nurse) she later married my grandmother’s eldest brother my Uncle Walter. So became one of the family.
Joyce is now 97 years old and lives a Care Home in Caerphilly, I visited her 4 years ago in her flat and she was as fit as a fiddle and told us all sorts of stories about the family. Now though she is very deaf and suffering with Dementia.
She wasn’t 100% sure who we were, she recognised my Dad’s name and talked about other members of the family but one thing is certain, she loved our visit, she laughed and joked and LOVED having the children there. 97 years young.
We had a lovely couple of hours with her, I am ashamed that I don’t go more often, particularly when as we were leaving her friend stopped by to visit.
Her friend Joan had been brought by her granddaughter who she is staying with from a couple of weeks – Wait for it – she is 98 years old and had flown in from CANADA! This made our 3 and a half hour journey seem very short.
I resolve to visit more often if I possibly can. I had put Visit family in South Wales on my 101in1001 list to ensure that I would. I am so glad I did but don’t want to leave it as long next time, and fingers crossed, I shall meet some more of *my family* too.