Hold my hand……

My childhood home Reading in the Royal County of Berkshire

I was a child of the 80’s born in a simpler time when summer holidays seemed to be so long and were spent out on our bikes all day till teatime. I’d gobble up my cornflakes and be out with my friends till I got hungry. That was our summer. Looking back with nostalgia I think it was a wonderful time. I remember us seeing a poster stuck to a lamp post of a missing cat. We made it our mission to find that cat and claim the award. Cycling around, calling its name looking in gardens and empty shed’s. Unfortunately we didn’t find the cat but it kept us busy for few days!

It wasn’t all fun filled adventures I remember a lot of just hanging around our corner shop or in the local park. Seeing older kids smoking and staring in awe at how cool they were. I still see kids like that today hanging round. Every generation has them. Suspended in that frustrating time of adolescence not quite a grown up but almost there. Trying so hard to look older, pretend they know adult stuff.

Another time there was this old derelict house that was supposedly haunted. According to local folklore…. We all cycled down there with one torch between us and were going to investigate. We ducked under the wire fence and wandered round in a apprehensive huddle. I think we just made it into the living room before someone made a noise and we all ran out screaming our heads off. We all promised not to tell our parents but of course one big mouth did so we were all grounded.

My best friend was Sarah. She was 6 days older than me. Very important when she turned 10 and I was only 9…..Single digits!!!

We were inseparable, same size, same bowl haircuts. Just same. Every weekend we were at each other’s house. For my birthday one year my parents bought me a fold up bike. I was mortified as I’d had my eye on a bmx but my Dad said he was tired of ruining his car with my bike when picking me up from Sarah’s. She was one of four so her house was busier and louder than mine. I loved going there and became one of the family.Her house seemed so much more exciting than mine. I think we all had a friend like that.

We took our youth for granted never dreamed about getting old. There we would be in her shed. We all our baby dolls walking round her garden with her mum’s silver Cross pram. Playing at being a mum, being independent having our own house. Making our own decisions.

At school we had what seemed back then a huge field. The boys would play football and around the perimeter there was bracken. There we made den’s in our lunchtimes. Once while digging we found some bones. Convinced we’d dug up dinosaur bones we ran with our treasure to Mrs Caulfield a dragon that was the playground supervisor. She cooly informed us in her thick irish accent that we’d probably dug up one of the Priests pet dog……so no reward.

One distinctive memory I have is holding my mum’s hand. I remember looking at her hand holding mind and comparing them. Mine. Small with Podgy fingers with pink plump flesh and her’s bigger with lines. I remember they felt rough. I was only young but I do remember feeling surprised at how they felt compared to mine.

This week I was preparing something in the kitchen and I looked at my own hands. Now my Mum’s hands. It took me back to that moment and the realization that now my kids must feel the same when they hold my hand. To age is a blessing, to have that time to reminisce shouldn’t be wistful or sad it should be joyous.

I’m happy I now have my Mum’s hands as like me my kids will know what it is to be loved.

Thank you for reading x

Summer days x
Fun x
My home x

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