It's been a significant week, one way and another, as I was just explaining to Daddy, what with finding a letter from General Garibaldi dated a month after he was here on the Isle of Wight in 1864, and surviving a glass shower door shattering over me this morning ( I'm ok, just a bit shredded and sore) and as Uncle Joe says- getting used to having 'dodged a bullet'. All that aside, there's a story that I want to tell you- that is to be continued...
On Monday, I started Yoga class again, having left it alone for over ten years. During the class, the Teacher asks what kind of yoga I've studied before. "Hatha" I say straight away, then knit my brows in perplexity. Because Em, I didn't study Hatha, it was Iyengar, but as the teacher is explaining this class, and I'm wrestling with my mouth and my memory- I didn't feel it appropriate to correct myself.
Later we did a fab relaxation and during this, he guided us to the inner flame that was the true self.
This true self that had made up her yoga history glided, chilled and centred, to work.
A delivery of old books arrived for me to sort and buy what I could sell. I sort through them, and a 1960's Teach yourself-Yoga, caught my eye, and rang some memory bells...
Of course! That's it- my Great Uncle Wallace (who had one leg) taught Hatha Yoga- he'd written a book on it I seemed to remember. The story also went that he had lived with Mum's cousin Kathleen, but kept going off travelling and once surprised everyone by coming back married to a Hungarian lady.
Anyhow, I thought I'd look up his little book.
That's where it all becomes rather flabbergastingly interesting Em.
Great Uncle Wallace didn't just write a book on Yoga. He wrote several, and he classified all the types of yoga into types that are still classified and quoted as such by him, today.
That's not all! Your Great-Great Uncle was a bit of a dude and I'm going to gather together some biographical notes on him for you girls at the very least.
He was important in the Theosophical Society, lecturing and producing papers on matters Theosophical that I shall expound upon later.
Suffice to say today- that V (for Victor) Wallace Slater (1900-1987), as explained by my mum this week was 'brainy' but couldn't afford University, unlike his Wife Doris (that- unusual enough in the 1920's) but he had managed to get a job at Laporte Chemicals- and risen to be a Director there.
Em, he discovered Hydrogen Peroxide! ( my hair couldn't be this shade without him!)
He trained as an Osteopath, was a strict Vegetarian, and after reading some of his findings on 'Occult Science' (don't let the definition put you off Em, it's historical) it seems that your anscestor was working on stuff that's just about now becoming scientifically recognised- significantly the ability to meditate deeply and use guided imagination to possibly change the body's D.N.A.
Your Great Uncle and Aunt Doris were way ahead of their time, and after several emails to the Theosophical Society who kindly sent me his Obituary and a bibliography of his writings- I have a quest, and at the very least a Wiki stub to produce forthwith!
A lot of what I have read, chimes with my own instinctual choices in life.
It's nice to learn a bit about the puzzle!
I shall fill you in along the way!
In the meantime, I've done you another picture.
It is of Sarah's (she of cake baking fame here at the Rabbit Hole) Uncle's garden as peered at through the trees.
Golden Cottage, sits at the foot of Golden Hill, and evokes a time gone by, when it was the main house that had the Orchard, that now is filled with houses all the way down to the High Street.
Dall Square still bears the family name, and after the recent death of her Uncle, it's about to go up for sale.
A beautiful house in a beautiful setting, who knows what it's future might be.
For now, I just wanted to paint a glimpse through The trees as a child might see a Secret Garden- golden, as its name describes.
Anyhow Em, that's enough for now,
Will write more about your Great-Great Uncle, in the mean-time I'm off to yoga again, with some cuts and bruises from the shower-door episode and a secret, that I didn't study Hatha, but someone close to us, did, quite a bit and more besides,
Your ever-loving Grand-Mother,