Some things are just so classic: Swiss Army Knife
But in writing this, I remembered how many knives I used to have as a child. Even when very young, I had a tiny folding penknife that had a picture along its handle, of a Clyde steamer, I think. It was probably a memento of one of the many little cruises we took on the Clyde when we spent summer holidays with my grandparents, in paddle steamers like the Waverley and the Duchess of Hamilton (that leaned alarmingly as people disembarked at Tighnabruiach pier) or the cheerful but elegant Queen Mary. They were great little ships, bringing the mail to my grandparents’ village each day, their throbbing engines making you rush to the window to watch them as they passed on their way to Arran. I think the Waverley ploughs the coastal waters of England still but the Queen Mary is languishing at Tilbury having been a pub moored on the Thames.
So one little item of classic design starts a chain of memories. Oddest, perhaps, is the notion of giving young children knives. I didn’t cut myself or stab a soul but I did have fun cutting notches into trees and sharpening twigs into arrows. Another time entirely.
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