On the sidelines, one cold and windy morning.
Put your hat on, it’s freezing cold. Look around you, everyone else is wearing a beanie except you.
Put your hat on now. I don’t want you to get sick.
Reaches into a bag, pulls out a beanie and plants it on the child’s head.
You can’t get sick for skiing. Why won’t you wear a hat?
Child is now wearing the beanie.
Tell her Dad! Tell her why she can’t get sick for skiing.
And what’s more, you’ll be sick during school holidays, so it’s not like you get time off from school. Ha!
Put your hat on.
Put your hat on now, or I’ll make you go sit in the car.
Child pulls a beanie out of her pocket and puts it on.
After two years of playing football, Big Sister scored a goal at the one game I did not attend. Winter shakes me up again. I feel weird, cold, tired and a bit more weird. It could be that I am generally a bit weird, and I only notice it when I have to sit inside a lot. Also I don’t know why I only have pink socks. I don’t remember buying so many. I had a nice outing with a friend and her potential wedding dresses, then I gulped wine and talked too much, got home and wondered why the fukola I talk too much sometimes. I blame winter. Also a starvation of social outings. I’ve forgotten how to be cool. I went to buy some winter boots, but they had already sold out. It’s hard to find the perfect boot. This is somewhat depressing. I am come in very late to GIRLS and have watched each episode of season one back to back over two nights. Fascinating. Also, the best opening title ever. Big GIRLS all lit up in a font that looks a bit like Gill Sans but that dropped R, it’s not Gill. Not Futura. Avenir? Nope. Not Agenda. Not Johnson. *Stops blogging to Google* …. Oh! It’s a custom font. Cool. Where were we? Oh yes, I’ll have you know I successfully backed a trailer through Auckland University last week. Backed A Trailer. Shut Up. I KNOW. Even after I told my colleague I would only drive the truck trailer situation forwards, but we’d made a wrong turn taking the stage gear back from this awesome show. So in GIRLS that guy Adam just peed on her in the shower, which is hideously gross…And then I remember lame, gross things boys did to me too when I was young that I never properly complained about. Sometimes you think that maybe it’s supposed to be like that.
I’ve scrubbed every corner of this house we’ve moved into.
It’s old and for many years seems to have been left to quietly decay, so there is no getting it ‘spotlessly’ clean or ‘good as new’.
That bothers me, though I am no clean freak.
It’s impossible to wipe or scrub away the proof of life of others here.
It’s positioned on a steep section in an old part of the city. There are gaps between the skirting boards and the floor that I can slide my hand into, where the foundations must be ever so slowly moving on down the hill.
I’ve scrubbed those dark alleys under the skirting, but they’re still black and stained from years of wear. Theoretically you could eat off them now, which will be perfect for any tiny critters that will.
But despite the marks and scratches, the dark corners and mouse holes, we’ve hung up all our pictures today – of the art that we’ve made and collected.
It feels good this house, now that I know every spare inch of it.
The nurse at our local vet reminds me of someone.
She has the very same hair, dyed a few shades darker than her natural color. Mousey brown roots show through along her part line, in just the same way as my friend’s imperfection. She has a pale complexion dusted with soft freckles, the same blue eyes and more little freckles around her lips. When I first saw her in the clinic reception area I stopped short and had to look away. My brain took fright, all I registered was a person standing before me who is no longer here.
I don’t know this woman’s name - but every time I go to buy the cat food I revisit her again, alive with her ready smile and sparkling eyes – she is there before me at the counter pricing up bags of Hills Science Dry Biscuits.
I do my best not to stare and quietly rejoice in her realness, I fill up on the association, the memories, the same child-like sweetness in her voice. My head is full of this remarkable likeness.
I don’t know if she can tell, I try to remember to blink.