One of the best jobs I ever had, dear Reader, was when I ran a small gift shop in Scarborough one summer. My cousin had the job before me and when she had to return home to school I took over. I had spent most of the summer working in a factory that made shampoo and bubble bath. These little jobs were a stop gap for the holidays back in my student days.
Compared to the factory work shop work was a doddle. All I had to do was sit at the till and watch television until I had to help or serve a customer. No working up a sweat packing or loading hundreds of shampoo bottles. I would keep the shelves nicely arranged and give them a wipe down and keep them clean.
But when I look back now it is not the shop that I think back to. It is the time I got to spend with my grandfather. The doors to the shop fully pushed back and they would stick. They folded back in a concertina way. Unable to be strong enough to do the doors. My grandfather would walk to the shop with me, which was about a hours walk from our home. He would always meet me at closing time too to shut the doors.
Now aged thirty-nine I treasure the time we spent on these walks. My chats were a little silly now. But he would always listen and give advice as we walked. Little did I know at the time I had little time left with my granddad.
Of course back then aged sixteen, I thought I knew it all and had seen it all. When we are young we don't know just how short life is and how we should treasure ever little moment with out grandparents. We chatted about all sorts of things on those walks and I was your typical moody teenager that would have a good moan too about nothing.
Later when I was looking for work my grandfather walked me to every interview waiting out of view for me to come out. Calming my nerves
"Remember they can't take your hands away can they?" He would say in his Barnsley accent.
I would give anything for a walk with him again. We used to walk on Marine Drive in Scarborough and great waves from the sea would splash us as the sea crashed against the walls. My grandma would be on these walks too, stopping off for a game of light up bingo on the seafront and then in the cafe or Harbour Bar for refreshments.
I now no longer live in Scarborough and I know when I return and have a proper walk about it will be a sad and emotional day. But I will do it, because I know it will bring them back to me. Once again we will all be walking and talking along the drive. My memories are too strong for them not to be there with me.
Evening all x x x