Thursday, June 7, 2007

Shingle Thursday

Perhaps Shingles didn’t feel I was giving it enough respect. Anyway, it seems to have kicked in a bit more now. I feel I am having the real experience. If you are going to go down with something, you may as well go down with it good and proper so as to have something interesting to talk about later on. In some respects, though, I am fine with things being boring: saw the doctor again today because of something under the eyelid. Keep an eye on it, she said cheerfully, (eye: geddit?) we don’t want you going blind. I told her that I would and agreed that no we didn’t, went to the chemist to replenish my stock of Anadin and homoeopathic stuff and wandered into the village community centre café for some lovely home-made fish pie, then back home for an intense, head-throbbing sleep.

I dreamed I was in the sitting room of the flat I lived in when I was thirteen, looking out of the large sash window over to Primrose Hill. The Blue Meanies, said someone behind me. It’s ok, I said, I like them. Then the estate agent rang and woke me – damnation, and I would so much like to have stayed there, listening to Sergeant Pepper on the record player. It was looking at the Youtube film that Cusp put up on her blog the other day – an excerpt from the Beatles’ Yellow Submarine - that must have done it. It hadn’t been made yet when I was thirteen, but dreams are not constrained by details. And the voice behind me, I think, belonged to a woman called Jill. She and her friend Thomasina were employed by my mother to keep me company while I had chicken pox. Connections!

Jill and Thom must have been in their late twenties. They worked for a TV company, as set designer and P.A. but were on a break. My mother and sister must have been away, the au pair too, because there were only the three of us in the flat for several weeks and Jill and Thom slept in my mother’s double bed. I had only heard the word “Lesbian” once in the context of a very curious conversation with someone a year previously who asked me whether I had ever heard of a woman getting married to another woman. Well, she told me, one of the women pretends she’s a man and they sleep in the same bed and it’s really disgusting. I pictured one of the women with a moustache and beard and then my imagination fogged out. Being a late developer and almost unbelievably innocent, I had only just cottoned on to the word sex, without really knowing what it meant.

One day, while we were all sitting on the floor watching Top of the Pops, Thom with a headache, Jill got up, knelt behind her and began to massage her neck and shoulders. Thom shut her eyes, leaned back and smiled, then turned to look up at her. It was a long time they took to look into each other’s eyes, Jill’s hands still touching her neck – and then I knew, or it was the beginning of something understood: they were lesbians and what was between them had something to do with sex as much as, and perhaps more than, the things I heard my friends whispering about.

The estate agent was ringing to tell me that the prospective buyer who has offered us much less than the asking price, is still interested and wants to re-negotiate. In the circumstances, I am finding it hard to muster enthusiasm. I am shingling and thinking about my daughter in London who has much on her plate and a cloud over her head, and Sergeant Pepper’s band who blasted the Blue Meanies, and the hills being alive “wid dee sound of muzeeeeek”.

8 comments:

Anna MR said...

Signs of the Triangles - just a quick note here, a sign, if you like. Today, I wrote a post - nothing all that significant about it, and you already know I did so, having been there to comment. However, for the first time, I used the label "men". You, on the other hand, Signsypoo, have today, for the first time, used the label "sex" (I know it was the first time, because I hastened to click on it, and who could blame me? Everybody else will as well).

This is probably meaningful. We should retreat in some nook and talk men and sex. Don't you think?

(Word ver, you'll be happy to know, is gknudh - primordial German for getting some)

Reading the Signs said...

anna my dear, they can click on it all they like but this is all there is - sorry, no nooky stuff - just, you know, about growing up and that.

That German word is nice though. Very chewy-looking. I'd very much like to know how one pronounces it.

cusp said...

OOOOh, so the old Blue Meanies have been chasing you have they: not round that garden with you naked I hope [ ;-) --- private joke, dear reader !].

I love the way dreams can put your memories in a Magimix and produce another reality. All my dreams are like that: just a weird mixture of bits of my reality all muddled up.

Eat more fish pie I say. Very sustaining; nourishing brain food.

Do keep an eye on the eye, dear. Can be very nasty. You'll have to do some visualisation with Blue Meanies attacking the bugs. That'll zap the little blighters.

Liezl said...

Hi Signs, Just noticed your sex tag. Good work. More nooky please and more on lesbians! xx

goodthomas said...

So much here but I will leave any sex or lesbian talk to others.

I will merely say that I hope your headaches are subsiding a bit. I know those things killed me. I kind of felt I didn't have the "real experience" -- my pain was that severe. It was slight but the headaches are what just floored me.

And damn that prospective buyer -- keep your ground. If not her, then someone else will come along. Charm will find a home.

I like the blue meanies, love the verbing of the word "shingling" and wish you happy smiles.

Reading the Signs said...

cusp, I want you to know that I have my clothes on and I am about to eat kedgeree.

liezl you rascal, you are perfectly capable of finding all the nooky you require - and waddya take this for - the L word?

goodthomas, your smiles have reached me and are good - because this is, as you found, a bit of a headbanger.

Jane Holland said...

Lesbians are great. Especially on buttered toast. And I should know. I used to be one.

Jx

Reading the Signs said...

Hi Jane, were you - on buttered toast, I mean? Respect. I hope Liezl is looking in, she will enjoy this kind of detail.