A Member of The Association of Graveyard Rabbits

About Me

As a child I enjoyed slipping off to the peace and quietness of a local cemetery, they are far more interesting and a lot less dangerous than a boisterous playground with it's rough games of daring.
I also knew, as children so often do without having to be told, that cemeteries were places of quiet respect and usually the domain of visiting adults. So I had an excuse at the ready should I be challenged about my presence there, I simply adopted a Granny from one of the headstones on my way in and would say that I was visiting her. 


Most children have a natural morbid curiosity about death and things 'Unknown' and I grew up in a time when those kind of subjects were not discussed, especially with children. 
I would look for the graves of other children to discover their ages and what might have been the reason for their demise. I guess I also liked the sad little cherubs that looked over them as they slept eternally. 
I loved nothing more than to listen to ghost stories and legends of things that ‘go bump in the night’ and I remained scared of the dark well into adulthood as a result of it. 
My Grandfather had a superb sense of the theatrical, and filled my head with all sorts of vivid imagining and nonsensical yarns. These tales simply fanned the flames that fascinated and terrified me in equal measure all the more.


The growing up and putting childish things aside because raising a family of your own takes over for a while. Then after they have grown and leave to raise families of their own, you can indulge yourself once again in those simple pleasures that strolling through a cemetery or churchyard can bring. Only now that you are an adult, no one will question your motive for being there, even though you arrive with a camera instead of flowers and flit from tomb to tomb taking photographs and making notes, rather than visiting just the one relative.


I am most fortunate that my husband, also enjoys these visits of discovery, although it must be said, that his interest is prone to wane far sooner than my own. However he has hatched a cunning plan, by firstly locating the nearest Pub before entering the chosen ‘Sleeping Garden’ so that when he is done with looking around, he heads off for a beer......
or two.
Over the years my family and friends have learned to accept my odd little interests and I think they have resigned themselves to my foibles rather than go to all the effort of raising a quizzical eyebrow as others often do. They are an open minded and tolerant bunch on the whole and my close friends will even offer to stop the car when they spot a tombstone or two themselves ~ without any prompting from me ~ even when we are supposed to be on a shopping trip at the time. 
I've even seen them smile quite maternally when they see my face light up when I find a little treasure ~ a Tutankhamen moment for me is just another old tombstone to them ~ and so they have even accompanied me on a visit or two at times, at their own suggestion I may even add. I'm now used to them saying things like ' I saw a grave the other day and it reminded me of you! ~ not sure if that is a compliment.......... 


I had always believed that I was rather alone with my interest in things funereal and was surprised to discover that my interest even has a name of it's own, so now I'm officially a Taphophile ~ I'm not sure if that sounds a little bit too quirky. 
It may seem strange to some, but I'm quite happy just to wander in the tranquility of the great outdoors and enjoy the peace and quiet of a Sunday Afternoon Cemetery Stroll. It's the serene Art and the wonderful stories that these places can tell that lures me back into visiting them again and again. 
When my husband and I travel the world we will often locate a cemetery of interest and go along for a look and take a ‘few’ photos. Sadly all too often, monuments become senselessly vandalised or time and the weather can erode and ravage these stones until they are gone and lost forever.
So what do you do with the bunches of photographs, of the amazing Victorian monumental masonary that I adore? ~ they really knew a thing or two about making a lavish statement !. 
I seemed doomed to be a ‘Billy no Mates’ with no one to share them with, for they are not usually appreciated when shown as a part of your holiday ‘snaps’ collection.


Then I discovered the world of Blogging and found a group of other Taphophiles who enjoyed the same things as me and as I reading the fascinating blogs of others, I realised that each headstone was like the first page of the novel of someone’s life story. 
So I felt that I should really know a little more about the owners of the gravestones that I had taken photos of and become a Graveyard Detective using good old ‘Google’ like a wonderful magnifying glass that helps to reveal some of those stories behind the names on the headstones.


I hope you like my collection, it is a labour of love and I do hope that it is seen as a place of tribute in respectful memorium to those who are included upon it.
Should you discover that any of my statements are incorrect, please feel free to contact me so that I might amend them or if you are a family member and wish to have a particular post removed, please let me know.    








2 comments:

  1. Beautiful, Haunting, silent, restful and sunshine. Love all the pictures and the time you put in for doing this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. why thank you, I'm glad you enjoyed what for me is a labour of love......

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