Tuesday, 13 December 2011
Day 13: I Remember
'Wedding of the Painted Doll' was the theme of our Brownie Guide float at the village summer fete around 1980. I'm the girl in blue at the corner with her back to the camera. I remember my mother asking me a few times to look at her and she has a number of other photos from the same day, all with me either looking behind or in smeary profile. Along with some of my fellow dolls, I seem to be distracted by the toy soldier, who's giving a bouquet to the bride. I can't remember the names of the soldier (another girl) or the bride, but I know I was jealous of them both that day, the bride in particular.
Neither can I remember the names of most of the other girls. There's Lynne Watson on the far left who, at around the time of the photograph, was indirectly responsible for my first romantic disappointment. Our class was weeding one of the school flower beds one afternoon in the summer, when Charles Pasfield, whom I'd loved for many days, came over and told me Lynne was now his girlfriend and he hated me 'down to the ground.' I said I didn't care but I don't think I fooled anyone.
Beneath Lynne are Sharon Panel, Rachel Morarjee and, looking straight at the camera, Claire Taylor. Rachel, Claire, and James Bennett and I were the school witches. We spent break-times pretending to fly broomsticks and praying to the devil to make it thunder. We used to say we'd flown to one another's houses the previous night, but found each other fast asleep:
'No, I wasn't sleeping. I'd put pillows in my bed to make it look like I was there, but actually I'd flown over to your house and you were asleep.'
'Well, I flew over both your houses and the two of you were snoring like pigs.'