Waiting on platform 5 of Amsterdam Central Station. Not too busy for a vacation period. What does occur to me is a remarkable number of grandmas, grandpas and their grandchildren, being waved farewell or embraced back home by their parents.
Nearby, a dear little girl clamped herself to her Nan, who was over the moon about taking her for the summer stay in her home. Holding tight to each other, they exchanged in a loud excited voice the plans they had in store for the stay. The father stood a bit aside, holding the child’s bag in his hands. He seemed to have been reluctantly sent out by his wife to transfer the little girl to his Mom. His face showed mixed feelings. He looked as if he wanted to delay the time of departure, not wanting to let his child go and at the same time he often looked at his watch, eager to have the transmission done as quickly as possible, so he could go home again.
All in all, a sweet picture of happy family life in the summer. As this little group I saw, dispersed over the various platforms, many bunches of cheerful parents and grandparents were merrily swopping their rucksacked children.
It reminded me of the olden days, when my grannie and auntie were waiting for us to be delivered at their place for the summer vacation. Seeing my parents off, when they drove away, brought a same mixed excitement about the special holiday time ahead to spend in a warm loving home and at the same time an undefined sadness about being far away from home.
For me, those places of departure and arrival like stations, airports, harbors and even road restaurants along the highways, are always filled with these sentiments of saying goodbye and farewell and of tears and laughter. Somehow, those venues have a magnetic attraction to me.
It’s all about collecting memories. We constantly experience stuff which become memories. And any people or places could bring back flashbacks of long ago, memorable ones as well as daunting ones. Summer vacation period is full of those reminiscences, maybe because there is time to watch, listen and digest. It makes me realize the power of good memories and the necessity of intentionally organizing important experiences to remember.
To fill your inner source for good and hard times to come.
Carola Eijsenring, Indigo World, 13th of August 2013