Time out…

IMG_2057The news of Brubeck’s death yesterday and copious postings of Take 5 on Facebook had me hurtling down the long and winding road of memory, back to the very early 80s… to happy days of youth, rebellion and innocence…

To carefree spring days where we skipped school and hung out in the town square, before malls were invented, with the boys and their guitars, rollies and beer and other things… a little Nina Hagen, a little Dave Brubeck and a little of our own improv…

A couple of afternoons a week, we’d cycle madly across town to the canal to join our girls’ rowing team; giggling ourselves stupid over the stern and rather sturdy madame who sat at the front shouting at us to keep in time… and failing dreadfully. Then we’d cycle to the other end of town, racing each other or sometimes doubled up through the narrow cobble stoned alleys and paths, to lounge around in the twilight fields by the lake with the boys and their guitars and their earth pipes… giggling even more covertly with each other at their fumbling attempts to seduce…

On rainy days, we’d hang out at the local cafe, playing pool and smoking, smoking, smoking… in the days before we knew about cancer… pretending to be punk rockers but not daring to really stick safety pins in ourselves,  thinking we were the dog’s bollocks but more like a pack of lost, undernourished mongrels… so much older then as the song goes… so confident and free… so reckless, mostly with ourselves… so stupid in so many ways.

I lived with my grandmother then, on the continent. My poor grandmother. What was my mother thinking?! Still a child when I arrived, I quickly metamorphosed into a teen before my horrified grandmother’s eyes. My poor grandmother nearly had heart attacks over my appearance… my leggings, boots, see-through ripped shirts and wild hair… and my behaviour, fuelled by her sisters who would pop round with newspaper clippings of tragic tales of child drug addicts. They were very sweet in their meddling and, at the time, quite funny; referred to collectively by the extended family as ‘the three old tooties’. My poor grandmother, she was a very proper, trim, old world lady with her perfectly coiffed ‘auburn’ hair, twin sets and Chanel pearls… and coffee and cake at 4 on Sundays… when I knew her.  She was a spinster… and had been a bit of a wild child herself in her day. She certainly rued the day then but another story for another day…. although perhaps explains the horror and worry about me.

My mother too was a rebel… the small town party girl who, barely out of her teens, quit the shirt making factory, packed a bag and sailed off to the new world with a few dollars in her pocket and married the rakish son of my poor grandmother. I’m quite proud of my mum… and if truth were told, my grandmother… both grandmothers… another feisty female.

Does make me wonder though… Now a mother of a young teenage girl myself, I find myself somewhat dreading what is bound to come… inevitable, that rebellion, that arrogance, isn’t it?!

But with any luck, my darling daughter will be, as the final, unusual 4th measure in the Blue Rondo a la Turk rhythm… different from these three generations before her… a little offbeat, a little less rebellious, a little more sensible through her teen years… one can live in hope… lies? head in sand?… whatever… it’ll all be fine in the end…

About F_ox

Just a mother, a wife, a writer, a professional marketer, amateur photographer, art lover, aspiring beekeeper... dreaming of a citrus grove in Sardinia... 'let the beauty of what you love be what you do' ~ Rumi
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