58 years ago, almost to the day, 8th February 1962, I arrived in the UK as a 16 month old baby, to the delight of my would be adopters, Cath and Arthur Enock and their two children Christopher and Ruth.
But it wasn’t meant to be me. The first baby allocated to them, and the mind boggles as to how the matches were decided, (lucky dip?!) was withdrawn during the boarding out process. This is all revealed in the files I recently acquired, although I do remember secretly finding files in my parents’ bedroom and reading this as a child, ‘though my adoption story was never openly discussed.
In my files from the National Childrens Home, a letter from my adoptive Mother begging for updates after her first allocated baby was withdrawn, and more poignantly, two pictures of Golden Phoenix who, had she been healthy enough, would have come to my parents.
I cannot help but wonder whether she finally got adopted and if so where. Winnie is now trying to find news of her for me.
And quite bizarrely, each time I ask the minibus driver to stop outside my house, I have to shout out her name. For Golden Phoenix area, is the name of the place I am now living.