Maggie and I started a new Memory Box off at Harris House on Tuesday afternoon. We celebrated it’s birth with a storytelling, song and reminiscence session with residents, where we made some recordings of recollections relating to the box contents of images, ropes, the lovely knot board Maggie brought along and the creel.
We spoke about cooking fish as well as fishing. Ceann Cropaig, (in this case made without onions!), oatmeal herring made with soft oatmeal and there was a lovely story about a man who brought fresh herring around to sell, held together by a piece of string, but when he sold the herring, he always wanted the string back!
One gentleman could still tie a mean and speedy reef knot and he knew what all of the knots were used for. A lady was tickled by the monkey fist knot and slightly upset by the Turk’s Head (‘poor Turk!’).
We checked the quality of the creel making, ten out of ten, apparently. One gentleman was happy to hear that the knot board was made for Maggie by his brother. Maggie’s cork float from a fishing net, retrieved from her fence, was donated to the box, and eagerly sniffed by everybody, collectively deciding that it wasn’t actually that pleasant an aroma.
The box will remain at Harris House until Mid December, when it will go to the Library for booking out to anybody who would want to share it with friends, relatives, neighbours and people that we work with. For example, a Care Centre or a person caring for somebody at home can borrow it from the Library as though it were a book.
Other boxes in the series include a sensory box, crofting box, exhibition box and seasonal box, which is currently Harvest related. A Transport box is in progress on Barra.
While the box remains at Harris House, please contribute to it with stories, songs, fishing related memorabilia, images or artefacts. Maybe there is a fishing map pf the best places to fish locally? Maybe somebody has a special fishing hat or feathers they would like to share images of. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or drop things off at Harris House.
We will be holding another session at Harris House in 2 weeks time, date to be announced, to offer more work around this, and to share songs, stories and memorabilia, so please come along and join in. Anything you know about fishing locally is very important to this project and will be supporting many people as the box is shared.