Vivid is a quality I associate as much with memory as image. Perhaps vivid images invoke stronger, clearer memories.
Looking at the photo of my son’s half-eaten sandwich, I am transported to a railway carriage in Munich. It’s mid morning, cold but sunny, and we’re headed for Schloss Neuschwanstein. Unsure if there will be food available on the train, we’ve been to the station Rischart for sandwiches and coffee. I can still taste the crisp bread and salty, cheesy filling, and feel the sense of joyful anticipation. Visiting Schloss Neuschwanstein was the Big T’s number one chosen activity for this holiday and we all wanted the day to be fun. It was.
It perhaps says a lot about me that some of my most vivid memories are invoked by pictures of food. The last of the season’s grapefruit from our tree were eaten while sitting on the back steps, juice trickling down my hands.
When the Big T came home with a bumper catch of fish, we spent the day scaling, fileting, smoking, making stock, and finally enjoying delicious sashimi of raw snapper with homemade sushi.
And like most parents, images of my child trigger strong, vivid memories.
A young boy, arms outstretched to catch a soft toy being thrown by an unseen hand. The vivid, acid greens of his clothing almost blend into the summer landscape behind him. This photo was taken on a family trip to England in 2006. We had spent a week around London and were finally heading north; a slow trip punctuated by stops in places the Big T and I had lived 10 years earlier. A lunch-time picnic by the canal in Berkhamsted was followed by a drive through Ashridge Forest and –inevitably given our love for elevated vistas — a walk on Ivinghoe Beacon. My memories of this day are still vivid, helped by images such as this which remind me of my exuberant, joy-filled son and his capacity to take pleasure in everything life has to offer.