A Riverside Nightclub, over-looking the Avon River, in Christchurch, New Zealand. Many years ago!
A Corporate affair, tickets available to make up the numbers. Would we like to attend?
Friends to be present. What is to refuse?
Dress for the occasion. Young, slim, attractive. Part of the 'set'. Of course, we will attend.
I should, perhaps, stress, Gom & I are still much in "young" love. Something like 10 years married. Happy, blissful. Young children. Still excited by each other. Mysteries to unfold, explore. We really were, so happy!!
Sitting at a large table of guests. Some new aquaintances.
The man in the white suit asks me to dance.
Dancing to the happy band's beat. The sudden realisation of ...an 'intrusion'. What the Heck?? An innappropriate erection?? "Raging" one might say?? Moving away, curving the body, to indicate, "This is not invited!!"
Begging sudden tiredness, a faintness, over heated, need to rest.
Gom laughs about it, to this day. Oh, he could be so damn smug!
As if to say," you are mine, & that is that!"
I admit we still laugh about the 'white suited man'.
Travelling back to childhood memories.
Living on the edge of a farm. Climbing over the back fence to investigate the farm paddocks.
The wonderful exotic fruit tree. Loquats. A delicious, sweet, fruit, that grew on the neighbour's farm, down by the cattle yards, & the water troughs.
Those sweet yellow plum like fruit. The sunshine they contained. Ashamedly, I admit to stealing those fruit with cousins. The dear lady who owned the tree, was gently kind to us, when we lied about the reason we were hanging about the tree.
We told her several differing versions of why we should be down there, stealing the fruit, or rather, in close proximity of her lovely Loquat tree.
There were water troughs, & they attracted frogs, who laid their eggs, to become tadpoles. Which, of course, became frogs eventually. We were not lying about the attraction to the frogs. We did find them fascinating, & we were never cruel to them.
This frog resembles the one we saw when we were children. I don't ever remember being repelled by frogs-though I know girls were supposed to be repelled by such things.
This is a little Green Frog I photographed in our garden. I was so thrilled to see it. The pic is very blurry. Taken before the new camera!
It is true, that memories can warm you, as you age, ...or chill your soul.
I need to go back, & capture the rich floor, of pineneedles, the tall trees, spooky, creaking, & creepy, pines, of the camping ground atmosphere.
It is hard to describe the smell, the dark sunlit, filtered light, of the camping grounds of those long ago days.
As a child, they did seem particularly spooky, & surreal, in a way.
Our mother worked for the "Public Service" which I think, meant a Government emplyment, & as such, she was entitled to Public Service Holiday Accomodation. She had to book for a chance in the queue for her turn. We spent several nice, holidays in the "Public Service" premises.
One such, was a caravan, in a holiday camp, at Papamoa Beach. Off we went, Mother, 2 kids, & lots of hope. A very spooky Caravan. Under the Pine Trees.
Thick pineneedles underfoot. A not unpleasant smell, though rather dark. A friendship struck with neighbour children, in another Caravan.
I never did find out if they were 'Public Service' also. The friendship with the son, Clive, of about my age, was very strong. We ventured daily, to the ocean front, to swim, & cavort in the smaller waves. We loved the surf, we loved the ocean front. We loved the excitement of finds among the seaweed. The driftwood forms. The shells. The endless sunny days of frolicking among the foaming surf.
I always had a 'fishy' love of the ocean, the surf, the breakers, the foaming tide, washing upon the salty sand. I adored it all. Paradise.
Running over the sand dunes, among the Lupins, in full flower, their scent heavy in the salt-laden air. The smiling flowers of the yellow 'Pigfaces', the succulent plants with yellow flowers. The smell, as we carelessly crushed their stems, flowers...under our running feet... how could be so careless??
The surf, pummelling the beach front. The huge log, rolling in & out with the breakers. Shall we dare to ride this log??
Or course! Why not? We are daring!! & young .... & ignorant.... & ...well, ....young.
So, we jump upon this log, tossed so roughly by the wave motion. Out, out, into the breakers...
I am on the top, triumphant! Woo Hoo! Look at meeee.....
Swept under by the log! It rolls & rolls, & I am still under..... I am drowning! Help help, who will help me...........help........
Clive to the rescue! How he managed to get me from under that log, I will never know. But he did!
Suddenly, there is an adult male there, asking if I am okay? Yes, yes, I say, Clive has saved me.
We rush back to the campsite. My mother disbelieving of the drama. Though later, I see she is shaking, has come to believe I may have drowned...
I never forgot that boy lifesaver. I never forgot his name. I think he is the first person I ever fell in love with. I remember the town he lived in. I remember a lot of details. He was just about perfect.
Neil Diamond & Barbra Striesand, The Way We Were.