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I can't have been more than about 3 at the time. This is the main
reason I can't remember much about this particular time. From the
snippets I do remember, I shall try to explain to you, my last few
days before I had to leave Turkey to come to London.
I didn't actually know that this day was going to be different from
any other; but when you're 3 you don't actually have much control over
what your day will be like so this was pretty much a given.
My first memory of the day consists of the daily routines after you
get up: washing your face, brushing your teeth. The house was pretty
bare and there were a lot of boxes around the place, which would
account for a lot; but being a 3 year old, you don't notice these
things much. At 3 your only concerns are what toys will you play with
today and who you will be playing with.
My next memory is of being in my dad's car with him and my uncle in
the front and me sitting in the back. It was a clear day: I knew this
because I could see the sky through the windscreen, and the sun
must've been out because I remember my father as wearing sunglasses
and my uncle as having the little flap in front of him down. My uncle
gave me a little teddy bear which he had bought for me to remember him
by. I did not know this at the time but I wouldn't be seeing him again
for a long time. In my memory I can see my father and my uncle talking
amongst themselves; but even though their mouths are moving, I can
hear no sounds coming from them.
It's a strange feeling. Having a memory so clear that you can even
remember the weather but there is almost no sound. It's like watching
a television programme that has been muted. It kind of makes you
wonder what the actors are talking about, whether or not it's crucial
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There is a black spot here in my memory. A great patch of black as I
can't remember my uncle getting out the car, or where we dropped him
off but I'm sure a great deal of time had passed because it was darker
now, but the sound still hadn't returned. My memory occurs in complete
silence. Again I can see my father talking but I can't hear his voice.
It's very frustrating, as he could have been telling me about coming
to England but I must not have been paying as much attention to him as
I was to the inhabitants of the glove box. I feel bad now, but I can't
do anything about it now so all I have to do is hope it wasn't too
important what he was telling me.
Waking up, presumably the next morning, or maybe the morning after; I
remember not doing a lot that day and feeling very bored. The problem
with being a young child is you get bored very easily: especially when
you have an extremely small attention span like mine.
One of my memories of that time is going to my aunt's house. My cousin
and I had a lot of fun there, that day. Both of us blissfully unaware
that this would be the final time we got to see or speak to one
another for a long space of time. That was a time of great fun for me.
I can still remember that event even though it might not seem very
significant to me now.
Thinking it over though, I can see now that this was actually very
significant. This would be the last time I would be able to play with
one of my closest friends at the time. And in fact it would be the
last time I would ever play with any of my old friends, because I
would be leaving them all behind.
While writing this I have discovered that none of my memories have any
form of sounds, I can only remember sights. The sights I can remember
are very clear so in losing the sound from my memories, I have gained
in the clarity of the things I had seen.
My final memory is at the airport. It was coming to sunset and the sky
was beautiful. There was beautiful pink tinge to all the clouds. The
horizon was beginning to turn into an orange haze. I remember sitting
in the café of the airport with my cousins my aunt and my uncle for
one final time. Me not realising that we were going away.
Once on the plane I pleaded with my parents to get the window seat. I
looked out and waved in the hope that my cousins would see what I was
doing. I remember I was very tired and that I fell asleep on the
That is more or less where my memories end. I think by being about 3
at the time there was no way I could have remembered any of this
better. At the time of writing this, 13 years has passed since this
happened to me. It does feel strange that I know so little about such
a life changing event but I think it's better to know a little than
nothing at all.