My childhood memories are still so tangible, they seem like a land I can still visit. There I can be who I want when I want. I’m going to pack that sense up and bring it into my present.
The feel of my gingham clothes mum had made out of curtain fabric, and my Miss Piggy nightdress. Claiming my next door neighbour’s hand me downs. My dad’s old tie-die sunhat ripped and holey and eventually thrown. The slink of my black satin tube dress mum made for my Sindy, the lace of her cornflower blue Cinderella layered dress.
The tadpoles in an ice cream tub of water, the butterfly collection of a friend, the bandicoots, the stray cats fighting in the balcony and the blood on the cushions after. The bats hanging upside down in the trees and the owl I heard staying in the priest’s house. Newt spotting at night with a torch. My Sindy horse and my menagerie of animals for my toy farm including a hippo and a sheepdog. The wasp’s nest (part inhabited) that I took to school for a project.
Making plaited bread in the kitchen, the food for dinner parties before the guests arrived, chilli oysters on baguettes, the marmite and a spoon. The heat of curry sauce on chips as the steam rose into the winter air and the smart of the first sour sweet I had. Lacy pancakes and coconuts on the beach. Chlorinated water and sugary bread. Watermelon…endlessly when in season.
The Jane Fonda workouts in the lounge, the squash courts, the smell of the shuttlecocks out the tube, the feel of all my dance shoes. The plunge into the water from the top diving board. The exhilaration of ‘jingle jangle centre spangle’ and cats cradle. The ‘shortcuts’ on walks dad took me on.
-sport and health
The giant ham radio antenna that lived in our back garden and the dog being the same height as the sofa. The day I went back to primary school and saw the waist high hook that I always thought could poke my eye out. The beggar at our front gate. Seeing puppies born and monitor lizards chased. Stroking the fern leaf to see it close.
The smell of popcorn, of rain hitting scolding hot Tarmac roads, L’air du temps and Chloe, the mint of Foxes glaciar mints, granny’s house and old bound books, durian and fresh coconut. The metallic tang of my bangles. The plastic ‘clean’ from my Griffin bank account pack as a kid.
If I can remember these things this clearly, then I can also remember how to dream without bounds. And if I can dream without bounds, I can make anything happen.
What do you remember?