Seaside Towns Out of Season Day Thirteen: Family, Babies and the Human Satnav

After the excitement of the last couple of weeks today was a rest and relaxation day at Mareseybabes and Spamhead’s 5* Hotel (AKA mum and dad’s house/my childhood home.)

It’s always lovely to spend time at this ‘hotel’. It’s nearly fifty years since I last lived here but the sound of the birds singing in the garden still reminds me of the day we first moved in. The excitement of coming home from school to a different house and a bedroom with a window in TWO adjacent walls is a memory I hope I never lose. Even then, as a little eleven year old I loved solitary pursuits such as reading, drawing and writing. To be ensconced in my room, sat on the yellow candlewick bedspread with the radio playing and a plentiful supply of books, paper and pens was heaven. If I had chocolate my life was complete.

I still have the diaries that were secretly written (one with a tiny lock and key, totally superfluous when I read what I wrote) and the drawings and scribbled notes – poems, stories, plays that made up my life. Somewhere I have the reel to reel tapes of the interviews I did with my best friend (still my best friend today despite half a century of lives that went off in totally different directions) where we giggled and spluttered our way through chats on boys and pop groups, make up and fashion. I don’t suppose there would be any way of playing them now but it would be good to try.

Back to reality, and an invite from my brother and his wife to come and see the twin grandbabies they were looking after for the day.

I offered to drive but soon realised that Sally Satnav was a dream car companion compared to my mum. Before we had gone five yards I was being redirected, and if I thought Sally Satnav veered towards panic, she had nothing on Mary, who spent the whole journey warning me about red lights and approaching cars, with a foot pressing down on an imaginary brake at regular intervals. How I managed that thousand mile road trip without my eighty eight year old mum by my side for driving advice I shall never know.

Despite all hazards we arrived in one piece and were greeted by Geoff and Cathy at the door, a crying baby apiece. We had cuddles, gave bottles, oohed and aahed, soothed and smiled, danced with them to Queen, then, thinking (despite their undeniable cuddly cuteness) how glad I was that those days are over, we left as we’d arrived – Geoff and Cathy at the door, a baby apiece.

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Ignoring mum’s ‘Whoops!’ as I backed out of the drive and off the kerb, we set off to Baskerville’s for lunch.

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A three hour sleep on the sofa this afternoon, a home cooked meal of fillet steak and a visit from my lovely niece, Lynda (with hilarious teaching tales) all combined to recharge my batteries.

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Tomorrow, I’m saying goodbye to all my London family, and (no doubt weighed down with enough food to keep me going for weeks) heading back up north to the Blackpool clan. I can’t wait for cuddles with all my favourite grandchildren. And the husband if he’s lucky…

In the bedroom, I check the flowers – daffodils, a taste of spring – and know that for now, all’s well at the 5* Hotel.

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Seaside Towns Out of Season Day Thirteen: Family, Babies and the Human Satnav

Intricacies of Life and Love

Our family lives are full of intricacies.  How do we cope with life and death?  How do we deal with love? I spotted this sad bunch of daffodils with a note attached, marking the bench on the pier where two beloved parents used to sit.  Next to it, scratched on the rail was a testament to two other, probably younger, lovers. At this moment, for a short time, till the flowers wilted and the note blew away, these people’s lives were intricately entwined….

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Intricate.”

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The Intricacies of Northern Rail

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Intricate.”

Glancing through the window of the Manchester to Blackpool train I couldn’t help marvelling at the intricacy of the the old railway bridge and all the overhead wires….DSC05997

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A Proper Blackpool Afternoon

It was only an hour, killing time whilst I waited to pick up a print.  I wandered onto the pier, which was full of early season punters, I spotted the donkeys in the distance through the railings; I watched as families played and kids dug in the sand; dogs ran for frisbees; the big wheel turned slowly, mostly empty; the wurlitzer spun with its sole couple screaming, old men sat with mugs of tea and doorstep sandwiches; the steps, still wet from the sea, became makeshift seats, the sun shone and it looked like summer was on its way.  It was a proper Blackpool afternoon

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A Proper Blackpool Afternoon

Scenarios of Daily Lies

Another little poem I wrote after being inspired by the poetry evening.

‘It’s lovely.’
Her friend tugs at the stretchy fabric
Glances shyly in the mirror
Turns and squints over her shoulder at the tightly encased behind
‘Suits you…..’ follows her back to the fitting room
Too tight, too short
And the colour drains her
“It’s lovely.”
*

‘Great to see you.’
Face half in darkness, smile like weak tea
The door opens wider, slow and reluctant
Traces an arc on the hall carpet
She glides past, eyes down
Trailing wafts of that old musky perfume
A wasted evening beckons
“Great to see you.’
*

‘Ah no trouble.’
He sighs imperceptibly
Diversion at the first junction
Series of red lights
Bottleneck by the roundabout
Grandma fumbling in her bag for things long gone
Ninety minutes of his life never to be repaid
“No trouble.”
*

‘Yes, it was good.’
She rolls over
Recalling the trembling fingers as the bra snapped undone
The hesitant wet kisses
A slight whiff of sweat as his shirt was removed
His face, red and contorted
Never drinking again
‘It was good.’
*
‘I love you’
I want you
‘I love you.’

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Scenarios of Daily Lies