Tuesday, March 11

Chips And A Butterfly: Memories And A Visit From The Spirit World

Chips from a fish and chip shop
Chips from a traditional Fish & Chip shop
I felt a bit down on Friday as some results of a blood test I had weren't quite as good as I expected. "I know," I said to Karin in the evening, "Let's go for a walk." Can't beat a walk for getting your head in order.

It was chilly and windy and when we went out of our front door we just followed our nose(es) - as my mum would have said. We found we were heading towards our local town. Before reaching there, however, we passed a traditional British Fish & Chip shop.

Being a vegetarian I hadn't been in there for donkey's years but Karin asked, "Fancy some chips?"

I knew they would most likely be fried in some sort of animal fat but I still answered, "Yes."

As soon as we opened the wrapper, while continuing our walk, the smell and taste immediately transported me back to when I was a child.

Mum and I always visited my Gran on a Sunday evening while Dad got ready for work the next day. If I'd been good, on the way home, I was allowed a bag of chips - and back then the outer wrapper was still newspaper.

I remember eating the chips, while walking home with Mum, on a cold evening and that's where it seemed I was again last Friday.

Lost in my own world Karin said, "You're quiet." Then she said, "I know what you are thinking about - your mum."

That's the trouble of being married for a long time, spouses often know what you are thinking! So I told her about my memories of walking home as a child from visiting my Gran, while finishing off the chips.

It's strange where smell and taste can take you.

The next day (Saturday) I had been lopping some branches off a tree that had got too big in our garden. Karin came out to see how I was getting on - or maybe it was to supervise! But whatever, she said, "Whose your friend?"

I had no idea what she was talking about. "On your jacket. The Butterfly."

And sure enough sitting there was a butterfly, even though they aren't usually about this time of year. Goodness knows how long it had been with me, but it continued to stay with me as I carried on with the secateurs and tidied up the branches I had already cut. The butterfly didn't move, just sat there as I bent and moved about.

It stayed with me for ages even when I started to put the tools away in the garage. As I took off my boots though, the butterfly flew over to the wall and sat very still again. When I next turned around it was gone. The garage window was open so it could have flown away.

This made me remember a post I wrote this time last year His Dead Son Visited Him As A Butterfly. This is a story about how the English actor, Ricky Tomlinson, is convinced his son Clifton, who had died, visited him as a butterfly. Ricky said:

 "... but he [the butterfly] stayed with me all night and I just thought that this was wonderful. I felt his presence, it was Clifton. I was made up. I loved him, he was a cracking lad."

Later Karin remarked about how she wondered if the butterfly was someone visiting me. I'd been wondering the same.

Who knows, perhaps chips and a butterfly can be more meaningful than most people would imagine.

Other 67 Not Out Posts:
His Dead Son Visited Him As A Butterfly
Laparoscopic Nephrectomy Coincidences And Synchronicity
The Unicorn The Virgin And Opening The Third Eye

Bookmark and Share


  1. the smell of chips like that bring me memories of seaside holidays for me when a child

  2. Suzie17:41

    I agree with Tom, for me I associate the smell of Fish & Chip shop chips with British seaside holidays. That butterfly is odd! I remember reading the Ricky Tomlinson post.

  3. What a beautiful post this is. They say that smells are memory triggers... I think that butterfly was your mom, dropping by for a visit. I often associate them as spirit messengers.