Category Archives: Nostalgia

The most magical night of all….

sparkling_christmas_tree_by_surride-d6z9g5s

—so out comes the same old tree, symbol of the same old sentiments—

—but if I just gaze closely for a few minutes, memories of Christmases-gone-by coming flooding back—

Was it really so many years ago that I was being tucked cosily into bed with one of Mum’s nylon stockings (laddered, so frugally kept for this occassion) carefully placed across the bottom edge of the candlewick bedspread—? Oh—how to possibly drift off to sleep with a feeling of such excitement given the knowledge that Santa would creep into the bedroom at dead of night and (hope above all hopes!) leave that yellow hula-hoop which was at the top of my wish list in 1957—

Somehow, sleep did come, though (—the ‘nice cup of hot milk’ was a treat reserved for ‘after a warm bath’ on Christmas Eve and may have had something to do with the drifting off to dreamland—)

D’you remember the feeling of waking while it was still dark and nudging shoulders out of their cosy wrap so that you could reach through the chilly air to the piece of hosiery to check whether he’d been—? That sinking sensation if it still felt flat, smooth and empty, just as you’d placed it— Eyes tightly shut again, then, and a conscious effort to reach an unconscious state for he surely wouldn’t satisfy your heart’s desire if he found you awake—

Now it was more dozing than deep slumber until your mind again sprung into alertness and — did you dare reach to the bottom of the bed once more  —?  With a degree of trepid anticipation, you again push back the covers and nervously fumble for the stocking —

Ooooooh! Lumpy! — Bumpy!— He’s been—!

It’s so quiet! Everything’s so still —- but you just have to creep out of your snug cocoon and tiptoe across the icy-cold linoleum to wake your little sister— You share with her the delightful secret and drag your bounty-filled stretched-and elongated-nylon package across to her bed. Climbing in beside her, you wrap the single eiderdown around your shoulders for warmth as, by the dim light shining through the gap of the slightly-ajar door, you each pull out toys, trinkets, tangerines-in-the-toes—

Experience has taught you that top-of-the-list-presents are left on the rug at the foot of your beds so, with the stocking treasures strewn across the dishevelled bedding and with goosepimples now caused by ecstatic joy rather than the freezing temperature, you clamber down to explore that area—

With much Sshushhh!-ing, whispering, wriggling of hula-hooping hips and giggling, you indulge yourselves in pre-dawn rapture and wonder, until the door opens everso slowly and a sleepy looking Dad’s face appears with his customary Christmas morning greeting— “Has he been yet?”

Thank you Dad, thank you, Mum, for my earliest Christmas memories— xx

—and with thoughts of all the little ones who, today, can’t wait for night-time to fall and those once-a-year-longed-for-words, “It’s bedtime!” XX

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With thoughts of Yesterday…

phone box

 

Today, I went to see a lady who remembers Button A —

—and washing machines with a mangle —

—and gramophone records—

—and nylon stockings. With seams—

—and fountain pens and blotting paper—

—and Ration Books—

 

Before my visit, I went into town to buy her a book of nostalgia featuring pictures and snippets of text relating to home-life through the 1940s – 50s – 60s —–

I scoured the shelves of two major high street book stores to no avail—–

In my mind, I knew exactly what I was looking for—a sort of scrap book with chapters covering (now extinct) household appliances; brightly coloured illustrations of advertising slogans from those days; photographs of town centres with their variety of food shops, drapers’ emporiums, ironmongers’ stores; kitchen designs and living rooms’ furnishings and decor of that era; fashions in clothes (before denim took over!); cars with running boards and indicating arms; landmarks, which have now disappeared, such as red telephone boxes, blue RAC boxes, yellow AA boxes—–

The shop assistants helping me in my search were sorry but they didn’t have anything matching my description—-

—-so now I am reminded of two pieces of advice prevalent in the days of the second World War — ‘Dig for Victory’ and ‘Make do and Mend’ —- and that’s what I’ll do — I’ll set myself a project of compiling my own Scrapbook for her—xx

 

 

 

A Hard Day’s Night…

 

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Friday 6th March 1964 —

—and The Beatles were being filmed for ‘A Hard day’s Night’ along the Great Western Railway route of Minehead to Taunton, much of the filming happening on Crowcombe and Taunton station’s platforms—–

—and we played hookey from school to be there —- didn’t know the truant officer would have beaten us to it! Oh well, that little matter, once he’d taken a list of our names, was dealt with in the Headmaster’s office the following Monday morning—-

Having related that little story to friends (several times!) it prompted one of them to get us tickets to see the showing of that very film on the 50th Anniversary of its making, at Crowcombe Village Hall last night—

Tickets had sold out, the hall was full and we settled down with ninety-nine other people and a glass of wine to watch the black and white film with our idols of that time, John, George, Paul and Ringo, giving us goosebumps with the instrumental of ‘This Boy’, their ‘She Loves You’ signature tune, the previous year’s hit, ‘Love, love me do’ and a whole set of their compositions which had us longing to get up and dance but our inhibitions had us sedately wriggling on our seats instead, quietly singing along to the lyrics of half a century ago which are fresher in our minds than more recent pop songs!

(I know that sentence was too long — but, in those days, we didn’t need to pause for breath! 😉 )

Maybe, one day, someone will beam me up to The Cavern in Liverpool’s Matthew Street —– maybe, sometime in the future, I’ll see the Mersey—– 😉

It was a lovely evening —-

Thank you, Geoff and Ange — xx

 

Short memory–

1960s mini skirts

There really is nothing new under the sun, is there—?

One of today’s hot topics in the newspaper I was reading online is about the shocking length of girls’ skirts these days—-

Takes me right back to the early 1960s and our seniors’ dismay when mini skirts first came onto the scene.

My sister and I didn’t have much say in the choice of clothes which were bought for us so had to accept that our skirts would be modest, demure and definitely knee-length……..

—–until we left the house and got round the corner——

Then the transformation which we felt was fit for any haute couture catwalk took place—-several rollings-over at the waistband brought the hemline up to the desired micro-length.

Never mind that an hour-glass figure couldn’t be achieved with so much excess material causing bulging waistlines —-our skirt length was spot-on short—– and that was all that mattered—-

—so if anyone overhears pensioners on the bus discussing the subject of mini skirts, it’s probably because they’re reminiscing rather than criticising—-