The Hill(s)

I was supposed to be doing another weekly blog post tonight, but maybe I’ll do that tomorrow. Walking on my own through Loughborough University campus at lunchtime today put me into a somewhat whimsical, some might say, melancholy mood. I popped into the old Schofield building where I used to study Economics which has long since been given over to a Mathematics department. I was checking out where I needed to go to help a research student with an experiment next week. It’s something I used to do all the time when I was at uni. I enjoyed being able to help others with their research while mine was ticking along in its own little theoretical bubble, and sometimes you got paid for your time.

A photo Siggy took while we were on holiday made me think of a couple of others taken of the back of my head in the past.

Here’s the first one, taken on Tower Hill at the back of Abergele in North Wales – where I mostly grew up.

On-Tower-Hill-198something

It’s poor quality because it’s a scan of a real physical photo (no digital in those days!). I was in my teens and it was the late Eighties. hence the full head of hair. I’m wearing a grey woollen jumper that my nan in Accrington knitted for me. It was one of the only ones that fitted properly.

Walking up the hill with friends, my brother or on my own got me in the same sort of mood that I found myself in today. I wrote a poem at around that time which features in an earlier blog post here: On this day in history: 1989 and also in a reworded form in my collection of short stories – details of which can be found here: The Sun and the Rainfall.

The next photo was taken by Siggy in 2013. It was a conscious decision of mine to ask her to do it. I wanted to record the passage of time, see how the trees or hedgerows might have changed. However, the only growth that seems to have changed between the two photos is my hair. It runs in the family, there’s no escape. My grandad used to say that his hair had been pulled out by a monkey during the war. My excuse is having worked in an IT job for way too many years.

On-Tower-Hill-2013

The photo taken this year in Santorini overlooking the beach resort of Kamari, shows me taking good care of the bald patch. I was too hot and sweaty to fall into any kind of reverie. There was less of a drop than the photo suggests and lots of ancient greek ruins to explore on top of the hill.

On-Perissa-Hill-2017

Tower Hill in Abergele has ruins of its own – there used to be buildings up there associated with the local hospital. In the other photos I’m sitting in what would have been the bay window of one of the houses. I’ve been told that people suffering from tuberculosis would be sent to stay in the houses to take in the Welsh air, which at that height was pretty much as pure as you could get. The air in Santorini was tinged with the exhaust fumes from the aircraft taking off and landing at the airport. Indeed by the evening you could see a clear low-lying yellowish smear in the sky denoting the approach path of the aircraft.

Anyway, that was most definitely a ramble, just not the usual weekly one. Until next time, TTFN.

 

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