Tag Archives: lost

Lost/ Wrong Turns

Having no sense of direction, I have been lost many times. The most memorable and distressing experience was in the 1960s when I was in my early 20s.

Umberto and I had moved to Basel, Switzerland, after a brief sojourn in Hobart, Tasmania where Umberto worked for a term to give his notice, after a year in Italy.                                        I arrived back in Switzerland a few weeks later than U. He had found us a wonderful floor of a quite eccentric looking old house in an outer suburb.

Umberto met me at the airport and took me to the university, where he’d begun another course. He decided to ride his bike and I was to follow him driving our NSU, two cylinder, Prinz car to our new home. Stupidly I didn’t ask for the address…

Following a bicycle isn’t the easiest thing in a large city. At one point, with the bike out of sight, I made a left turn. I’d been madly looking about not realizing I was turning into a road facing five lanes of traffic coming my way. As I turned I saw Bert cycling calmly over the bridge in the opposite direction. The policeman in the box was more amazed at my foolishness and did nothing, as I did a U-turn in front of the oncoming traffic. Unharmed, what a miracle!

When I finally drove over the bridge there was no bicycle to be seen. I drove on and eventually stopped in a street and let out those tears of humiliation and frustration. I just sat there and cried.

In those days there were no mobile phones, not even a telephone at the flat we were renting. There was no way of contacting him. Umberto suffered from bi-polar and we had very different logic.

Eventually he turned up on the bike. How he found me I have no idea, but it ended as happily as that episode could be expected to end.

Umberto in the late 60s

Umberto taken in the 1960s

Post Script: I am taking some time off from blogging. I have the grand children to stay and then I hope to follow through with yesterday’s post and attempt to do some illustration. I will be back one day to let you know how that goes.

I appreciate all of you and thank you to those who have wished me well. I will be back… I hope.

Wrong Turns: When was the last time you got lost? Was it an enjoyable, or a stressful one? Tell us about it. Ben Huberman


Unexpected, but welcome guests: daily post

“You walk into your home to find a couple you don’t know sitting in your living room eating a slice of cake. Tell what happens next.”

‘Maureen, is it you? How? I’m lost for words. It’s so wonderful to see you. I thought we’d lost touch completely.’

Maureen’s daughter says, ‘Who is this Mummy?’

‘This is Barbara, don’t you remember me telling you; we have been trying to find her?’

‘Barbara this is Adele, I’ve named her after that lovely girl who used to live with us.’

‘Adele, you are wisely named, I’m delighted to meet you! How old are you?’

‘I’m four’ putting up four fingers.

‘Maureen, I have so many questions. It must be over thirty years since we lived together at the family group home. Please tell me about your life, are you married? Where do you live now?

‘Hey, wait on, one question at a time!’

‘I’ve missed you so much, and always have wondered where you might be.’

‘Well, I’m here now! We are looking for somewhere to live. My abusive marriage broke up and we managed to escape. I decided to try to track you down.’

‘Let me make a cup of tea and you can tell me all about it.’

‘Anyway, you are no longer with Ian. Looks like you have a story to tell too.’

‘True, I have given up my wandering ways and am now settled with Chris. I’ll take you out to the studio so you can meet him.’

‘How did you find me with a new name?’

‘Well, I contacted Ian. He hasn’t changed his name. He said you’d love to see me, so that gave me the courage to come.’

‘Christopher, this is Maureen and Adele. Do you remember me telling you of my first child that arrived at the family group home when I was in Queensland? I’ve shown you the photos of that time. We’ll have to get the photos out to show Adele what Mummy looked like when she was young.’

‘Come and have a cup of tea everyone. Would you like juice, Adele?’

‘Yes, please.’

‘Would it be alright if we stayed with you for a bit?’ Maureen asks.

‘Of course, that will give us time to catch up properly. Have you kept in touch with your brothers? Are they still in Queensland, or did they go back to New Guinea?’

‘They all stayed in Queensland. Yes, we have lots to catch up on. Remember when nits went through the home and you had to wash all the linen from eleven children’s beds?’

‘Yes, I do, but at least the weather was hot and it didn’t take long for the sheets to dry. Ivy was there to help and she was a marvel!’

‘It was Jamie’s sister who came with the nits that time we invited her to come out with us. I remember those nits were jumping everywhere before you managed to wash her hair and comb it before we went out.’

‘I’m scratching at the very thought of it!’

If you are out there in the biosphere Maureen, I would really love it if you could make contact.