So this morning I was cutting paper, fragile tissue in long lengths of 3 or 4 metres, reducing it to narrow lengths. Bringing the edges together, smoothing it out, folding and then slitting it along the fold. I was reminded of Ralph and Tom then Peggy and my father.
Ralph, Tom and Peggy worked on the cutting floor where huge long lengths of fabric were laid out in multi coloured layers. Then the patterns that Peggy had worked on were laid over the top of the fabric and both Tom and Ralph would start cutting. They used a machine with a long sharp knife blade. When blunt the blades were used to sharpen pencils, so, in my mind they were never blunt , just not sharp enough for all that fabric.
This was the world of my fathers’ work, a factory mass producing garments. I went there in holidays first to play and then to work. It was not huge maybe 30 or 40 people worked there, but it was the team on the cutting floor that I knew best.
That was over 45 years ago.
The smoothing, folding smell of it all.
Action and memory