The 'Story of Silent Night', which was given to me one Christmas when I was six - it was the story of a down and out composer who had no ideas left, and it was Christmas, and he came up with the hymn 'Silent Night.'
When I observe Gram, I see how fragile the notion of tradition can be. If I take my eyes off the way she kneads her Easter bread, or if I fail to study the way she sews a seam in suede, or if I lose the mental image I have of her when she negotiates a better deal with a button salesman, somehow, the very essence of her will be lost. When she goes, the responsibility for carrying on will fall to me. My mother says I’m the keeper of the flame, because I work here, and because I choose to live here. A flame is a very fragile thing, too, and there are times when I wonder if I’m the on who can keep it going.