Welcome to justthoughtsnstuff

I started posting to jtns on 20 February 2010 with just one word, 'Mosaic'. This seemed an appropriate introduction to a blog that would juxtapose fragments of memoir and life-writing. Since 1996, I'd been coming to terms with the consequences of emotional and economic abuse that had begun in childhood, and which, amongst other things, had sought to stifle self-expression. While I'd explored some aspects of my life through fiction and, to a lesser extent, journalism, it was only in 2010 that I felt confident enough to write openly about myself. I believed this was an important part of the healing process. Yet within weeks, the final scenes of my family's fifty-year nightmare started to play themselves out and the purpose of the blog became one of survival through writing. Although some posts are about my family's suffering - most explicitly, Life-Writing Talk, with Reference to Trust: A family story - the majority are about happier subjects (including, Bampton in rural west Oxfordshire, where I live, Oxford, where I work, the seasons and the countryside, walking and cycling) and I hope that these, together with their accompanying photos, are enjoyable and positive. Note: In February 2020, on jtns' tenth birthday, I stopped posting to this blog. It is now a contained work of life-writing about ten years of my life. Frank, 21 February 2020.

New blog: morethoughtsnstuff.com.

Sunday 17 June 2012

north york moors, kirby, burlington, pope, melbourne, nunnington, hound trail

Lovely weekend staying with family on edge of the North York moors, near Kirkbymoorside.

Looked through really interesting files of family papers, architectural drawings and photos yesterday afternoon, that brought the lives of my ancestors to life. Sad to think that family house, Kirby Hall (a rare design by Lord Burlington--who was the subject of Alexander Pope's Epistle to the Earl of Burlington, Of Taste (1731), one of the Moral Essays) was demolished in the twenties. Great-grandfather lost heart after the death of his only son during the First World War and sold up.

Day also overlaid with happy memories from my childhood of coming to Melbourne Hall near York where my dad grew up.

A sad task yesterday morning was visiting Dad's grave in order to decide on a headstone. While there we also trimmed the grass on his grave and around the many headstones of our ancestors.

A delicious lunch at the Royal Oak at Nunnington.

In the afternoon we walked on the moors for a bit and came across a hound trail. Fell hounds--a sort cross between a hound and greyhound--race across the moors, following a pre-laid laid trail. Beautiful animals. An old-fashioned sport. There are a series of trails throughout the summer and cups are awarded to the champion animals when the season ends.

Non-stop rain yesterday but a great time.
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