This is not just any pencil; this is a very special pencil. I was given this pencil by my grandad who was a master craftsman.  When I was a wee boy I loved to visit him and get to work in his workshop.  He always had little jobs for me to do and he gave me this pencil to put behind my ear just like him.  I was 5 years old when he gave me this and he was always laughing at me because I was constantly trying to get the pencil to stay behind my ear.  I only used the pencil when I was working with him.  We would spend a lot of time in his workshop and he would show me how to use the tools safely and how to make things out of wood.  Sadly my grandad died when I was only 10 years old and although I still made things from wood in the garden shed, I never used the pencil again and kept it in a safe place.  When I left school and started my joinery apprenticeship I started using this special pencil again as my Gran told me that grandad would have been so proud of me for following in his footsteps.  I was also using my grandads hand tools and that was just a great feeling knowing that he worked hard crafting things from wood using these tools and now I am doing the same.  Unfortunately my van got broken into one evening and all my tools were stolen including my grandads tools. The pencil was sitting on the dash board at the front of the van and that was all I had left from my grandad.  My stolen tools never turned up but I was happy that I got the chance to work with them for serval years and I know he would have been so pleased too that I got the chance to use them.  I put the pencil away for safe keeping and have never used it since.  I have now brought the pencil back out and I have given it to Sammy to use when he is working with me.  I know it’s only a pencil but it has so many memories for me.   I am sure my grandad is watching over me and Sammy and he will be laughing again but this time at Sammy trying to keep it behind his ear.  I just wished my grandad could see what I make today and I wonder what he would think about all the different skills I’ve learned. I hope he would be proud of the wee boy he encouraged to work with wood.

43 years old pencil still in use
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