Saturday, January 09, 2010

School milk


Sometimes, when you wake up ridiculously early (4.50 a.m.) and you foolishly talk to your partner for half an hour (foolishly, because this makes you fully awake) and you're desperate for a cuppa, and before you get out of bed you have to put on two jumpers over your pyjamas because it’s so cold, and then when you get back into bed with your tea and your laptop, you find an email from your sister about a website of the village where you grew up, and you look at the photographs of yourself and your brothers and sisters at the lovely village school, and you read all about a classmate’s memories, and you remember the way the school milk popped out of the tops of the tiny bottles when it froze and how the teacher used to defrost it in front of the classroom coal fire, and how you took your best friend Christine Cook’s milk home for her when she was ill, and how Perfect Person (Miss Brown) taught you beautiful italic script and how Miss Coggan took you on nature walks and allowed you to go and pick brambles for the dinner ladies to use for pudding for school dinner, you are overwhelmed and burst into tears, and you wonder why life isn’t simple and sweet any more.

And you snuggle under the bedclothes again, and all you want is for your mother to be downstairs in the kitchen cooking bacon for your breakfast, and for the smell of it to be wafting upstairs, and for your brother to be groaning in the next bedroom about how cold it is, and that there’s frost on the inside of his window. Sometimes, when all of this happens, all you can do to cheer yourself up is to ditch your usual sensible porridge, and make yourself pancakes for breakfast.

Jan 10 139

p.s. I am the one with the glasses in the top photo, and the others are three of my lovely sibs.

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