Mine is a relatively small family. As a child, I had no brothers, no sisters, no grandparents, no aunts, and only one uncle, whom I met once. Obviously then, no cousins either. I didn’t mind. I listened to my schoolfriends moaning about the torments of having a brother, how annoying their sisters were, and how embarrassing they found their Uncle Norman and Auntie Elaine, and took their comments at face value.
One of my regrets when my mother died was that I’d asked her so little about her family. Her father, for instance, who’d died when she was 19. He was one of 8 siblings born to a poor London family. Alone among those siblings, he was educated, a high-flyer at his Grammar school. He won a scholarship to Cambridge, where he did exceptionally well, and became a parish priest. What’s the story there? I shall never know now.
My father too. He came from Poland during World War II. His family were well-to-do landowners at one point, but his father died when he was 12. Because his mother remarried and I don’t know what her new surname was, I have no means of tracing any family members there.
But there are leads I can follow, and I have started to do so. My new blog will not be organised chronologically. Rather I’ll tell tales as they occur to me and recount results of research when I have any successes.
And I also write another blog. Earlier posts describe our day-to-day lives in France, in the small town where we lived. More recent posts are about our redicovery of Yorkshire, our present home. It’s called ‘From Pyrenees to Pennines‘ and you can find it here.