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Pictures for a new year

A new year is in sight and calendars for 2022 are beginning to be available. Twenty years on from the publication of the first calendar of The Roundabouts of Redditch, the good people of Redditch are now offering a calendar of benches which can be sat upon around their town;

They have captured the market for interest and amusement which comes from the most banal of ‘everyday’. One year they featured sheds and sheddites.

That is fine. Most of us prefer something more obviously beautiful reflecting an interest in a hobby, wildlife, popular entertainers. DIY calendars can feature family members – especially children growing through the years. Out local park group has produced a calendar every year since 2014. We don’t make much money but cover expenses and the calendar brings the joy of the park into local homes – and is exported to family who walked or played here in the past and like to be reminded of warm summers, bright springs, colourful autumns and snow in winter.

Most will be hung in the kitchen and used to plan the year and each week – week by week. Holding time in the simple matrix gives assurance – Once an appointment is committed to paper it is there for reference when our confidence falters. Best to include names, phone numbers or another contact detail. Something to look forward to – make plans and arrangements ahead of the time.

And when it has been done – the same note is there to look back on, to retrace and correct memory. It becomes so difficult to gauge time in retrospect. Almost everyone will say that the days, weeks and months go faster every year as we get older. Maybe it is that which makes reconstruction of the order or absolute duration of events that have passed less secure.

Good to have a friendly picture to hang the information on.

Remember a new school term – amongst the first exercises was to draw out the working days (Five plus a half day on Saturdays), schedules of lessons through the mornings and afternoons, homework topics for the evenings and weekends. Time for games on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons. You had a map for the weeks ahead.

At home we might not have such formality - but a recognised and well-loved routine – particular meals attached to their usual days. Sunday set aside for family and something other than the working week.

There’s me musing on years which have gone by. But the point is that the simple, illustrated calendar has been around for many years, I do not know how many, and remains a good and celebrated piece of equipment – Perhaps especially as we get older – and have more difficulty in holding onto things without the grip of words on the paper.

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