From Here to Fostering

From Here to Fostering
Experiences are everything.......

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

In the beginning...

Remember when you could smoke on trains? Remember when you could buy ten silk cut AND a whole pint of beer for a fiver? Remember when you would wear a tiny skirt underneath a long one and then pull the long one off as soon as college was out and you were free to get onto the (smoking) train and hang out with boys? Perhaps that last bit was just me, (and any other girl who has just been released from a convent into a co-ed sixth form).
Tonight I am backtracking to the heady days of the late nineties, when on my very first day at sixth form college, Fritha and I first met. I got onto the train, a little nervously as I did not know a soul, grabbed a seat in the corner of the (smoking) carriage and set about trying to look cool. Although hard to believe now, the smoking thing was really true, and honest to goodness, you couldn't SEE for all the puffing cigarettes inside that locomotive. But it wasn't long before I heard a voice calling to me through the volcano; "Hey chick, haven't seen you before! I'm Fritha, who are you?" I wafted the smoke away, and behind it found the coolest looking girl I had ever laid eyes on, smiling at me. And that was the beginning. The beginning of all the adventures. Just the start of all the train trips, road trips, and plane trips, sleepovers, fancy dress parties and video shoots (another time), house parties, pub parties and rave parties. The begining of a friendship which evolved from that train carriage, through our college days, on through our uni days and into our twenties, stretched on into our considerably more sensible thirties (although I speak for myself only here), and into our here and now, the mid thirties. I am glad I remember the moment we first met, because truth be told, nowadays I can't remember her ever not being in my life and heart.
Fast forward eighteen or so years and you'll see us, still together, arms linked, and battling the wind on a freezing cold beach in Cornwall on New Year's Day. Having just enjoyed a particularly special week's holiday in a perfect-for-us holiday home in Polzeath (organised, as usual, by hers truly) with our best pals, we were feeling blue about going home. As we mulched along the wet sand, laughing hysterically at my eldest's suggestion of getting an ice cream (whaddaya want - hypothermia?!) we chatted about her hopes for the year ahead. Having spent a year living at home after the painful end of an intense relationship, her wounds were healing, her heart was mending, and it was time to move back to London, to be back in the hub of her work. As talk of rent and mortgages progressed (thirties chat v different to smoky carriage teen chat, no?) we moved onto the exciting topic of my own dire financial situation (caused by insane cost of childcare/house/food/life). My fella and I had been advertising for a lodger for a while, but had still to hear an enthusiastic response. We had travelled from the small town of Indifferent (surely the cute pictures of the kids haven't uploaded correctly?) and had just arrived on the outskirts of the city of Offended. Enough was enough. We were officially pissed. Not one person had enquired about our ad. Not one person wanted to share our house! Our close to the Northern line/Common/curry houses of Tooting, family house! Even with two noisy/sticky children, smudgy floors, scribbled on walls AND mice thrown in to the deal. So imagine my excitement when my phone buzzed (despite shocking Cornish reception, must be a sign) and a lovely, sparkly, young, single, normal sounding lady doctor (Ooooo), asked if she could come and see the room the next day. Whoopeeee! All our troubles were over! I could move back up from Sainsbury's basics to regular, normal, non orange products! We could perhaps even get the odd Taste the Difference item on weekends! As I chattered on about this doctor goddess/new BFF to be, Fritha went quiet. "I wonder if she'll have a cool dog?" She asked. At that point, her own little canine beauty bounded on past us up the beach. "What if you wanted a lodger with a dog?" She asked. Blank stare from me. Confused (told you I was simple), I stared at her expectantly. "What if I was your lodger?!" she finally chirped, her impatience with me smothered by her own excitement over the suggestion. I'm pretty sure that the subsequent howls, screeches and yelps of joy that erupted from us both were only audible to bats in the surrounding beach caves and possibly any nearby wolves (do they have wolves in Cornwall? Must google). Hubby was absolutely delighted ('do dogs catch mice?') and she moved in the next day.

1 comment:

  1. Welcome to blogging... although I'm newer to this then you! Oh - and our blogs look remarkably similar...