Days gone by

While catching up on reading the other day I came across a lovely post from Cathi over at Dear Anonymous Friend. In it she paid a wonderful tribute to her friend who had recently passed away and recalled memories from their childhood. It started me thinking about my own.

It would be hard for the younger generation (and I’m not that old) to understand that not so long ago there was life before mobile phones and technology. As Cathi alluded to in her post, the preferred method of getting your friends to come out and play was usually either banging on their door or yelling for them at the top of your voice.

Instead of mobile phones and games consoles there were fields, trees, rivers, streams and laneways that stretched for miles into glorious countryside which we were able to weave into any fairytale we chose.

Back then my games console was a kite donated to me by my Uncle. I would spend hours dancing through fields trying to make it fly, and when successful, watching it’s 60ft tail whip and whirl in the wind. Cowpats on the soles of my shoes were a regularity, because after all, it’s hard to see the ground when your eye is on the sky.

Our local shop had a vast array of sweets hidden behind a glass counter, sticky with fingerprints from people like myself eager to choose the best options possible for inclusion in a 10p mix. For anyone who remembers such a counter, Bazooka’s, Fish & Chips, milkteeth and Dracula’s teeth were my favourites.

I went to the shop on this little red bike which had the capability to fold in half. It wasn’t anything special, but I attached an old car Ariel to the back which I then tied ribbons to the top of. I must have looked like a right eejit, but back then I thought I was the bee’s knees as I cycled to meet my friends.

Even as we got older we still made do with what we had. The beach, the place which had provided so much fun when we were younger became the place we would visit to discuss our problems. Somehow everything seemed better under the roar of the waves from the rough sea.

Life seemed a lot easier then, more carefree, and it was, because by and large we had until that point been shielded from the complexities that life had to offer.

If only we had known then what lay ahead.

There are a lot of things I don’t remember about my childhood. They are locked in my wonky top box somewhere and usually it takes a reminder from someone else to give them a jolt and bring them back to life.

Other things I remember only to well. Some I wish I could forget.

But no complaints here, it was a good life. Now I wonder where I put that kite.

31 thoughts on “Days gone by

    • There’s a whole other thing to the kite flying. We decided to take my little next door neighbour up one day. I’d upgraded my kite by then and had a proper Peter Powell stunt kite. So we set everything up and when the kite was flying we gave him a string in each hand and proceeded to watch him get dragged away from us lol Panic ensued and a hasty ankle round the welly boot saved his bacon on this occasion lol

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  1. I had an old car radio antenna stuck on the back of my bicycle for a while as well! I think things were bad back in the past as well, but we kids were just not so wired into the information. Yes, I remember going out to play in the morning and not showing up til dark, and nobody cared where I went or what I was doing. Those were good times for me, at any rate. I was a lucky one! And so it sounds, were you!

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    • I agree things were still bad, here we had the height of the troubles, but I wasn’t tuned to listen to the news then, or even adult conversation lol
      Great minds think alike with the ariel, honestly, I thought my little bike was the coolest bike in the whole wide world. I’m surprised I didn’t try to stick a CB Radio to it lol

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  2. Oh how I love this! Thank you so very much for this post, you have me envious of being near the sea… I actually did not see an ocean until after I married, but, creeks and rivers were my beaches! This is a beautiful post and brought tears to my eyes . I am honored to be mentioned in your post… and my favorite penny candy were wax bottles, bazooka, coconut ribbons and of course, licorice whips! Thank for more memories of my own. <3

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  3. Great post Juls, the reference to cow pats made me remember my FIL once saying that when he was a boy he worked in a dairy and as he had only one pair of shoes, for school and church, the cold mornings were countered by waiting for a cow to drop a hot poo and then running over and standing in what he referred to as poo slippers.

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  4. My husband’s mam was forced to give up her government job when she had him – and then his dad walked out when he was 2 – so she converted part of their house into a sweet shop. See, I got to a good memory eventually, even if none of them are mine in this case!

    I could write a book about the things I did by myself as a kid – I was nearly always outside and usually alone.

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