Wednesday 11 January 2012

Where I Am From

Thanks to Fourteen Countess for inspiring this post. Thanks to my family for shaping my identity. It's not always easy, but it is always memories.

I am from a workshop in the garage and a craft room in the basement, from cups of cold milk with Nesquik and a parade of Volkswagens. 

I am from the white semi-detached with the pretty front yard and the yellow windows. From the antique furniture, the wooden panelling and the oil paintings. I am from this house, filled with the sound of the radio and good intentions.

I am from the beech tree, the rock garden and the pond with the goldfish that the cat would watch every day. I am from the swing my father built and the sandpit and the fort. I am from swallows and gooseberries and lady bugs and pink clusters of flowers and frogs croaking in the night.

I am from sleepovers in my brother's room, from camping by the sea, cycle rides through summer meadows and candles on birthdays, from quiet strength, from Martha and Alfred and Lina and others that should be remembered.

I am from the treacherous relief that alcohol brings and a sense of justice that is not always fair. From I’ll give you something to cry about and from you should have done better. 

I am from baptism, confirmation and church visits on Christmas Eve. I am from the discovery that all of that is probably not for me, and from the search for alternatives.

I'm from the flat land of the German North, from wind and rain and sea gulls, green pastures, Holstein cows and the swell of the waves. I am from Poland, uprooted by a war. I am from a cornucopia of cakes, from family barbecues, a vegetable garden, M&Ms handed back from the front of the car and from homemade bread and health food stores.

I am from the man who refused to leave his home and instead found work in adverse conditions. From the woman who got up early every day to milk the cows, the family who lost almost everything in a house fire and the little girl that tied her sled to the farmer’s horse-and-cart. 

I am from old leather-bound photo albums kept on book shelves and from slides that come out when nostalgia strikes. I am from a variety of collections and a variety of relics representing forgotten hobbies. I am from jewellery chests, old clothes, old records and boxes of yet-to-be-sorted prints, from cramped attics with doll’s houses and from pictures hung in frames along the staircase. I am from the notion that there is a lot to preserve, I am from a point at which history stops or begins.

© Text & Photos - Annika - All The Live Long Day (unless otherwise stated).


  1. Beautiful post! I love learning about other people's past and their life experiences. My Grandpa was Polish so I kind of know where you're coming from with some of that. I might steal (with credit) this idea for a future post.

  2. Annika! This is so, so beautiful! It's giving me chills. Such a powerful exercise. I'm so glad you shared this! xoxo

  3. i love this post. it is beautiful. i love the picture you painted!

  4. A really beautiful, poignant post. Thank you for sharing so honestly. Wishing you a magical 2012 Annika. Em xx

  5. What a great post! I wish I could write as eloquently

  6. what a beautiful post! ..und so schön geschrieben;)
    Lg JenMuna

  7. oh gosh, that was really beautiful!


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