Simple, happy memories are a part of the puzzle of who we are.
When I was about ten or eleven, I can remember getting extremely excited every time Mum announced that Dad had a meeting, and wouldn’t be home till late. Sorry Dad, it’s a great memory that you helped to create by not actually being there! It wasn’t regular, it was usually on a Tuesday, and Mum would often make one of my favourite meals, which was mince stew with tinned pineapple, and a pile of mashed potato on the side. If it was cold and wintry, she would top it off, by whipping up a self saucing steamed chocolate pudding with custard for dessert.
I am someone who remembers events based on the food I ate, however the crux of this story, is that with Dad out of the picture for the evening, we got to eat our dinner while watching TV. The sense of illicit freedom I felt on those evenings was huge. Essentially Mum was being the good cop for a night, revealing to us through her actions that it was Dad who dictated the rules on strict TV control which were normally in place. I’m not sure what we would have done if he had arrived home earlier than expected. It wasn’t spoken of as a secret, but we all knew that it was, even though looking back now, I’m certain Mum would have shared it all with him when he arrived home late at night, for his over-cooked stew (she always left his dinner on a plate in a blazing oven until he arrived home…perhaps she was not all that happy about his meetings).
I have replicated the screen dictatorship of my parents, but Friday night is movie night in our house, and it’s bliss. Sometimes we all watch…sometimes I write and pretend to watch…and sometimes if I’ve had a tough week, I take a bath, do yoga or just meditate. There is so much excitement and anticipation running up to the night. What are we watching? Whose turn is it to pick the movie? What’s for dinner? The build up is almost as much fun as the night.
My food isn’t as classy as my Mums. I haven’t mastered the art of using tinned fruit in my dinners yet, and I don’t imagine I ever will. I’m not sure if that was a fad of the seventies, or if it was just my family. There are many more food memories down that lane.
Linked with Essentially Jess for IBOT