Another day when the memories come flooding back, not to say that they are not ever present but some days the memory becomes more tangible like a taste in my mouth or something I can grip firmly and hold on to. It all started before I was born even so you could say that the memories are not entirely my own yet they belong to me and the events fashioned me and I am who I am because of them..........
Here in Seamouth we are used to the sight of the disused lighthouse on the promontory to the west of the town, long since redundant but although the lighthouse is not in active use, the story which has surrounded it is still spoken of. A local girl had disappeared, vanished without a trace.....some say she ran off with a local man....others say she killed herself over a doomed love affair..either way she was gone.Not long afterwards, folk would say she had been seen waving frantically from one of the windows of the lighthouse, after the first couple of occasions the reports were taken seriously enough for the lighthouse to be searched, nothing was found and the sightings continued sporadically.
I was born fifteen miles down the coast from Seamouth, my mother and father had moved away just after the girl had disappeared and as I grew up and heard the stories,I would pester my Mum about it.....had she known the girl...had she seen the ghost ? Her stock answer was to tell me it was all nonsense and to just forget about it although she had a strange faraway look in her eyes whenever I mentioned it. My Dad had long since gone, all I remember is a moody irascible man who seemed to resent my brother and myself and even Mum too.One day there was a scribbled note left addressed to all of us and he was gone, a neighbour saw him at the bus stop with his battered old suitcase and that as they say, was that.
Truth be told, we hardly noticed his absence and life continued as before, we grew up, we changed and Mum scouted for more work, she worked as a carer and was always trying to get extra hours whenever she could, I pointed out an add in the paper for a carers position in Seaforth paying a lot more per hour than she was earning at the time but it was though she had an aversion to the place, she would not contemplate taking a job there and took great pains never to visit the town unless it was absolutely necessary.
My brother Jason left school and found himself a job in Seamouth, working in a supermarket on the western edge of the town, it meant public transport there and back but he was happy enough. He had only been there a few weeks when he overslept and missed the bus, it was a difficult job persuading Mum to drive him in but she did so reluctantly and Jason told me later that as they caught their first glimpse of the lighthouse and he brought up the subject of the 'ghost girl', Mum turned deathly white and did not say another word the rest of the journey.
A few nights later Jason came home looking very excited, I was with Mum in the kitchen when he burst in " Mum, Daisy you'll never guess what ?" Our blank faces told him we couldn't guess. " I've seen the ghost, the girl in the lighthouse, no one else on the bus did but me and I heard her too, calling she was."
" What, calling your name Jason ?" I asked.
He looked across at Mum who was almost ready to collapse, shaking uncontollably but she rallied herself and asked in a whisper " Whose name was it she was calling Jason ?"
" Mum.....it was yours, heard her voice in my brain saying over and over, Sally Sally Sally."
Mum stood in the kitchen, now very calm, nodding to herself, mumbling something which sounded like "It's time...it's time" She hugged us both and walked over the the door and opening it, she stood on the step, straining her ears. She walked away from us, then broke into a run and before we realised what was happening....she was gone.
And that as they say,was that.....in spite of extensive searches Mum was never found nor was any clue found as to where she may have gone or what may have happened to her.
That was ten years ago and for most of those ten years I have been living here in Seamouth, well, I had to be close to Mum didn't I ?
I look across to the lighthouse and see the figures of two women waving, one older, one younger. I am brought out of my thoughts by the sound of children squabbling.
" Will you two just stop that now please and wave to your Grandmother ? "