A long-time friend of mine emailed me the other day to say his young daughter had discovered Mary Poppins. Not only has this given him a chance to relive this endearing movie many times over, but it prompted him to search out a book that has been sitting on his shelf for thirty years. The book is entitled Maria Poppina.
In his email, my friend wrote: “The original drawings are great; very different from the movie, but the chalk drawing they jump into is there. Sadly, my Latin isn’t any better at 51 than it was at 21.”
I was intrigued. I had never heard of a Latin version of Mary Poppins. I was curious as to where my friend would have uncovered such a book.
I replied to his email, writing: “I don’t think I’ve ever seen that book. I’ll have to go looking for it in the library.”
His response almost knocked me off my chair, literally.
“Oh yes you have (seen Maria Poppina). You gave it to me as a present in 1978. Tee hee hee.”
I spent the next several minutes first systematically and then frantically searching for any such memory. But there wasn’t a hint of it in my grey mush of a brain. Not a whisper. Not a shadow. Not a ghost. Nothing.
This shocked me. It also scared me a little bit. I often forget things, but when people prompt me I am able to retrieve at least a partial picture. This is the first time I can remember losing a memory so totally and completely.
So my question is, where do memories go when they get lost?
Lated edited to say: I have since found out that I hand wrote a short dedication in the front of the book, all in Latin. I have no knowledge of Latin so now I’m thoroughly puzzled by this whole thing.