I certainly did not attempt to write the book at one sitting. It is divided into months of the year with one page for each day of the month, headed up with a question. For example, January 5th would have the question: "Describe your home when you were a boy. Did you have a favourite room?" I took it upon myself to take this book with me every time we went to Oroville as a pastime while sitting in the shade to escape the heat. I would write a few pages each time. Now I am nearing the end, after all these years. Some of the questions have been tough and it has not always been easy being honest, but I must. I do not want this to become a work of fiction.
In the last several months, I have been going through my own father's things and came across a very similar book but given to him by my oldest sister. She gave it to him when she presented him with his first grandchildren. I find it very sad that when I opened the book, it cracked like a new book does when opened for the first time. There is nothing at all written in it. To say my father was not a writer is not really an excuse. The questions in his book were simple and straightforward and could have been answered in a few words. Was it just not important to him? We, as his children, have seen how he has lived, but having some kind of written record may have explained a few things and given us more insight as to who he really was. One's true character is sometimes more evident when more than the obvious is revealed. Today, he is too shaky to write, and his memory is too poor to even recall enough information to answer the questions so his book will remain blank. I have in front of me, as I type, a photo of my dad, together with his siblings, when he was about six years old. I know so little about that little boy and what made him the way he is today. I will probably never know.