Saturday, March 17, 2007

Childhood #31

I think I was wrong, so confessed Mother recently.

It was a local sports day or gymkhana, I can't remember. I suppose I was ten or eleven.

"Andrew, get dressed please".

"I am".

"Put proper clothes on".

"These are proper clothes".

"You are not wearing jeans".

"Everyone will be wearing jeans".

"I don't care, get dressed please. Wal (Dad), can you tell Andrew to get dressed".

"Do as your mother says".

"No, I am wearing jeans".

"If you don't get dressed, you won't go".

"If I can't wear jeans, I won't go."

It escalated a bit more from there. Skip forward a few minutes and I was running down a hill on the farm with my father in hot pursuit in the car.

But I had 365 acres, half of it bush, to get lost in, and I did. Dad had fences in front of him.

They went off and after creeping home, I am sure I found a good book to read for the afternoon.

I can't remember what happened when they returned. Nothing much I think.

Mum brought it up recently and said that perhaps she was wrong. It was rare for my parents to exercise such strong parental authority. I wish I knew back then about 'peer pressure', 'conforming', 'being one of the gang', 'not standing out in a group', 'daggy', 'nerdy' and all the other smart words and phrases that kids these days can no doubt trot out in such an argument.

I do understand where my mother was coming from. She wanted us to look smart for the benefit of the neighbours et all, but had she thought it through a bit more, I am sure she would not want us at a social event dressed up like pox doctor's clerks when no other kid was.

It was perhaps the first time for me that 'your parents are always right', started to crumble in my mind.

3 comments:

  1. It's funny how you sometimes revisit childhood experiences. In the last year or so I've had a whole heap of buried events return, some of them random and some quite profound. I don't know if it's some sort of desire for simpler times or just my idle brain searching for meaning. Perhaps I'm just really really bored.

    ReplyDelete
  2. My kid did this to me at a hotel we stayed at. I wanted him to wear a classy pair of pants for dinner, he wanted jeans. Pants disappeared.
    On the last day of the holidays he yanked on a piece of string hidden behind the antique wardrobe and pulled the pants down from where he'd hidden them behind the false top.

    ReplyDelete
  3. He was smarter than moi Jah Teh.

    ReplyDelete