14 February 2011

Cherished Mementos

On the right of the picture is a silver medallion with my Dad's initials engraved on the centre shield. I have no idea if it was a special gift to him or if he had it made but I remember that he wore it with his fob watch every single day. I guess when I was young I never thought to ask. When Dad died I adopted the medallion and still wear it on occasions.

On the left of the picture is a piece of shrapnel. A strange thing to keep you might say but it also produced a memory. During World War 2, when men were called in to fight or do munitions work or, in my Dad's case, to do skilled work on aeroplanes, the women took over the men's peacetime jobs. My Mom spent several years as a bus conductor.

One of her shifts meant that she had to start out early and walk to the bus depot since no buses were available at that hour. It was winter and it was dark. There were no street lights and all hell was going on in the skies. I don't know the detail but I know the end of the tale. As she walked a piece of shrapnel landed in front of her, narrowly missing her head. It wasn't a big piece but the speed with which it fell could have caused serious damage.

Mom kept the shrapnel as a good luck piece and when she died it came to me. Who knows, maybe that's why I've always been lucky.


  1. How lovely to have these treasures.

  2. how neat...its cool to have these memory pieces just to look back on or make the memories tangible...

    when was world war 3?

  3. "As she walked a piece of shrapnel landed in front of her, narrowly missing her head."


    Wonderful post, Valerie. I love seeing and reading about mementos because I find them utterly fascinating!

    After my father passed away, my mother gave me one of his miltary jackets he wore while serving in army. Everytime I put that thing on, it reminded me of my father. I know this sounds strange, but I could actually feel his energy still on it. It was like wearing a piece of him whenever I wore it.

    Hope you're having a wonderful Tuesday, dear lady!

  4. True treasures, beautiful heirlooms I'd say. :)

  5. Thanks, Kath.

    Amended, Brian. Thanks.

    Ron, how marvellous to still have your Dad's coat. It's no surprise to me that you pick up on his energy when you put it on. Have a great rest of the week.

    Akelamalu, I don't have too many treasures so I'm careful with these two.

  6. Wonderful mementos to remember your Mom and Dad by Valerie!

  7. That story about the shrapnel is lovely and charming. I used to have a good luck piece too until I lost it. So now I'm not so sure if it really was a good luck piece. :-P

  8. Your treasured momentos are interesting. There are so many questions that I wish I had known to ask while family members were alive.
    Thanks for your kind words on my blog.

  9. Nice little treasures Val, and glad they have stayed with you and brought you excellent luck. The sacrifices made back during WWII are incredible, and I am ashamed to say that my generation doesn't even come close to this greatest generation.

  10. So much meaning in those family treasures. Wishing you continued luck in all, Valerie!


If you're new to A Mixed Bag you might find something to interest you, a bit of mirth, a story or two, or some pictures. I'm so pleased you popped in, do leave a comment if you have time.