Saturday, 10 May 2008


Mum's still a bit croaky and on anti-biotics, so here's another letter from last year. When I registered my Power of Attorney over her affairs, I was surprised to find a new account in her portfolio: a telephone account, requiring a password to operate. I was surprised, as this wasn't Mum's sort of thing, so I closed it and moved the balance back into her savings. My guess is that someone from the Bank's marketing department had rung Mum and persuaded her to open this account.

Anyway, amongst all the scraps of paper that were piled on her table or her desk was this letter from the Bank, listing the details of the new account:

Notice that Mum has written: "This offer not taken up" at the bottom of the page. She didn't understand what the letter was about. She thought it was an offer which she decided not to accept when in fact she had already accepted it and this was a confirmation of that decision.

I find that note poignant, a little bit of administration where Mum is trying to demonstrate herself in control of her own affairs but simultaneously showcasing her incomprehension.


Matt said...

That is quite poignant ... my Dad did the same thing, there were tons of envelopes, letters etc. with his notes written on them, and he kept everything. I sometimes wonder if he'd be disappointed that I toss those kinds of things rather than keep notes on them and file them away.

Oddly, in everything I've read, I think I understand your Mum. Or, in some strange way, can relate to how her mind processes things. Not sure how to take that. :) But I admire you and what you do for her, and for sharing it all here.

Greg said...

Ugh.. My Dad kept EVERYTHING, even the little plastic seals he pulled off the caps on bottles of orange juice. When he died and I came home to help Mum sort out the estate I started off feeling guilty for tossing things he'd collected and kept for sometimes 40 or 50 years, but after a while I felt angry at him (and even more guilty, of course).

My house gets very cluttered at times and I feel so good when I've had a good clear out. So much about me is a reaction to him and it's not that he was a bad man at all. He just isn't someone I want to turn into.

Sorata said...

If you decide to collect dog hair, I have a lot of those here in my house, I can ship a bag over.

Please, say you'll take them. *innocent eyes*

Greg said...

First you threaten me with Cleo poop and now it's dog hair... I'm contacting Blogger about you!

Maybe you can make a sweater or stuff a pillow with it?

I am SO not into collecting anything but books and house dust (which I understand is mostly flakes of my own skin, so I'm not sure it counts as a collection - it's more of a dispersion).

"innocent" - ha ha ha ha ha......ha. Funny.