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Stories of time

I stand there on the rain-drenched platform, bent almost double, chest heaving after the long sprint from the station entrance, watching the red tail-lights recede into the unreachable distance. Too late. My friend runs up, also out of breath, still dragging her recalcitrant daughter, who’d wanted to stay amongst the seductive glitter of the city shops just that little bit too long. And yes, that was the last train, and we’re now stuck here for the night, a hundred miles and more from home, with nowhere to stay and nowhere to go. Out of place, and out of time…

So many travel stories seem to be like that: the desperate rush, connections missed, stranded in unexpected places. Or long tedious hours of doing nothing. “Hurry up and wait!” – that insistent, incessant refrain of every airport I’ve ever known…

It’s not just travel, of course. The interminable angst of the dentist’s waiting-room, for example; the dreary tedium of lost hours at the doctor’s surgery, where the term ‘patient’ takes on a quite different meaning; the torturous wait outside the court-house door. Or when time goes too fast: the anxious urgency of those quick glances at the clock on the exam-room wall; those painful last moments before parting, perhaps forever. When seconds can pass like hours, and hours pass like seconds, time is rarely as simple as it at first might seem…

So what are your stories of time, or your family’s stories of time – of time lost, time gained, of time seemingly against you every step of the way – or perhaps, for once, seeming to be on your side? What difference did it make?

What were the place, the people, the events? What happened, or didn’t happen, because it was the wrong time, the right time? And what happened after that?

What is it that holds that story together – even now, maybe years or decades further on in time? In what ways did time itself seem different, or make a difference, within that story?

Capture those stories in Zahmoo – and share them with others in your family, your community, your business. What do you learn from this as you do so?

Image credit: Damp and dark at the start by shirokazan under a Creative Commons BY-2.0 licence.

June 18th, 2012 by Zahmoo
Filed in: For Family
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Zahmoo is a story bank for collecting and sharing your family and business stories.