Sunday, 22 April 2012

"Up The Dilly Dancers....."

I've not wrote for so long, it's been hard to find the inspiration lately. This year has already been one heck of a roller-coaster; I've moved to another country, started a new job and lost two people who I thought would always be there. My Gran and Granddad have both passed away in the last few months leaving me with so many things I'd wish I'd said to them so I thought I'd say it the best way I know how.......


Gran, I have no idea where to start so I thought I’d begin with thank you. Thank you simply for being my gran. It’s so bitter sweet to be here, knowing that we’ve lost you but at the same time we know you’ll be back at my granddads side which is where I’ve always known you to be and where you undoubtedly belong. I can imagine your first words to my granddad now you’re back with him, ‘Bernard where the bleeding hell have you been?’
Everyone will agree that we are some of the luckiest people alive, we all knew you, we all got to love you, cherish you and no doubt some if not all aspire to be just like you. A person whose heart was made of pure gold, your door was always open to anyone, never judging, just loving and always with a cup of tea and a plate of biscuits – you were always ready to accept into the family anyone we introduced you to and you’d love them as your own.  

I’ve got so many memories of you from growing up, all our holidays from the infamous Cala Gran in Fleetwood to being sat at the Bar 3 Corners in Ibiza and what I’ll always look back on and giggle is your bottle of sherry neatly tucked away in your handbag always on standby to top up your empty glass. I’ll remember your stories you’d tell me on a Saturday night, the drinks I’d make you and auntie Jack and the 25p you use to give me, Mike and Kellie – it would by us a treasure of sweets from Sharon’s. I’ll remember every Christmas as a child and how magical you made it by just being there, the little red ladder that used to sit on the side of your tree and the buffet you’d put out at night for when the men would come home from the legion.

I’ll remember your infections giggle and the way you’d slap your thighs, the way your eyes would light up whenever your grandchildren and great grandchildren walked into the room. I’ll remember your gifts for the children, you’d never call round without a bag of sweets or a little toy you’d picked up whilst you were out. Most of all gran what I’ll remember is you being there, every school play, every Christmas, every birthday, every weekend, every time we needed something and even now gran I know you’ll be there because there’s a little bit of your magic is in all of us. If in my life I can be loved just fractionally of the way we all loved you I’ll be a very happy man.

I’ll always remember my granddads sunflowers in the back garden; they’re called that because they follow the sun, just like you gran, following happiness and light. You were the life, light and soul of our family; you were and always will be our irreplaceable Queen.  

I love you gran and I miss you so much. Sleep well. x


Dear Grandad,

I’m so angry because you didn’t give me a chance to say goodbye to you. I thought I had you forever, I thought that I could travel to the ends of the earth and come back and you’d still be there, and you can’t blame me because I did it once and you were.

I flew home all the way from the Falkands to be at your 80th Birthday granddad, but if I were honest I would have travelled so much further to be there for you. I remember you use to take me to the airport viewing park with Michael Barnes all the time as a child, you’d buy us 20p cardboard planes and we’d put them together and spend the day flying them. So really it’s your fault granddad that I’ve ended up doing what I do. And I’m so lucky; I’ve seen some amazing places because of that and had extraordinary experiences. Because of you granddad I’ve been to Ascention Island, Falkands, Toronto, Cape Town and so many more places.

Here is a secret granddad, your 80th birthday I travelled home from the Falklands, my friend Hayley gave me a lift back to Manchester from Oxford after landing. I worked from the Falklands to Ascension then got changed and travelled as a passenger the rest of the way. When I got back to Manchester I raced home, ironed my uniform and put it on again. I walked round to Auntie Jacks in that uniform because I wanted you to see me in it; I wanted you to see that I was now one of those people who we use to watch jet off as a child. You demanded your photo taken with me instantly and I knew then I’d made you proud.

But gran and granddad it wasn’t as proud as I was of you. You’ve been there for me so much, I only ever had to pick up the phone and you’d be there, willing to give me a lift to where ever I wanted to go.

I want to say I’m so sorry for not spending as much time with you as I should have done in the last few years, and if I could turn the clock back, which with a heavy heart I know I can’t, I’d make sure I saw you a whole lot more.

When two people touch your life such as you have to mine and then are gone so instantly it’s hard to find words to describe the numbness and the aching. Granddad whenever I smell greasy chips I’ll remember you coming home at midnight from the legion with a feast for me, Mike and Kellie. Granddad I’ll forever remember how every new year you would walk out the back door and walk in the front to symbolize taking out the old and bringing in the new.

I wont deny that I’m struggling out here on my own in Dubai, I can’t begin to tell you how much I want to be there for my mum but, at the same time your inspiration has brought me out here, with that in mind I know you’ll be watching over my mum and making sure she’s not on her own as she’s not as strong as she likes us to believe she is, and there is nothing more than I want to be with my mum at this time.

So gran and granddad, I just want to say I miss you so very much and even though I am over four thousands miles away from my family, please let them know that I love them very much. And please let my mum know I’m thinking of her ever minute of every day.

Wishing you so many sweet dreams as you both go up the dilly dancers.

Miss you both so much and love you more than words can ever express.

Michael Lawson x

So what I'd like to say to you readers is if you're lucky enough to have your grandparents still around go and see them. Don't put it off till next week as eventually it will be to late. Just drop in, you'll make their day.

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