Have you heard of this new magazine, Oh Comely? I love their concept; it's about people and their quirks and their creativity, rather than money and what it can buy. I spent an evening reading through this issue and very much enjoyed it. Oh, and I have a little page in it! I was asked to create an illustration about a childhood memory of discovery.
There used to be a small, intricately inlaid wooden box tucked inside the old hutch in the dining room. I remember my dad taking it out one afternoon, and showing me how to open it. It was a puzzle box, the kind that looks like it has no opening. He would take the box and slide these secret panels, one on each side, little by little. It seemed to take hours since the panels only moved a tiny bit at a time. But eventually we slid the lid off the box, and I let its contents tumble to the ground – a jumble of time-worn skeleton keys. I sat on the floor and studied each key, searching for clues, imagining that they opened doors all over the world. Later, when my dad wasn’t there to open the box for me, I would sneak the puzzle box out of the hutch and work it open myself, just to sit and stare at the keys. But I pushed the panels too hard, and the secret inner workings broke. I put the broken box with the trapped keys back in its place, and was eventually found out. I don’t know where the box is now, but I suspect it is locked in a chest in the basement. I used to hide the key to that chest in an unfinished wall, but the wall was plastered over and I don’t remember if I ever took that key out in time.