November 28, 2009

Happy 16th Adam!

My baby turns 16 on Monday, St.Andrew's Day, and I can hardly believe he's reached his first milestone.  His birth was a memorable experience in such as he was born with black eyes and a little facial bruising.  No. Neither me, his dad or our midwife dropped him, but I felt like strangling the nurse who at 7am, told me I wouldn't be giving birth until that afternoon.

At 7.30am, (and fully dilated) amongst a desperate flurry , he arrived. Because the birth was so quick (and unstoppable) he ended up with facial and body compression. It did, strangely, bring out the colour of his hair making it even more lustrous. Maternity nick-named him The Golden Child. The other babies in the ward at the time were little bundles of pink skin and dark mops or peachy with bald heads, so his thick, golden hair ( and a pummelled face) was something that didn't come along too often. And still he continues to be golden.

My baby has grown up now, following in the footsteps of his older brother. A bright, confident and cheeky chap who the girls all adore.  Lots of friends and the most chicken hearted, caring teen, who STILL volunteers to go shopping with his mum and doesn't give a hoot about bumping into pals. Whose  kisses are free and planted often as the limbs wrap around you. He's a brilliant drama student and plays drums in his band No Need For Idols and he mollycoddles the cat far too much.

His 'natural' talent is comedy. Over the years, it's Adam who has made me laugh the most. If I was to clarify his one main factor, that would be it.  Where the madcap ideas, impulsiveness and confidence comes from I've no idea. But I know they'll remain with him for life. He'll never become a boring old fart like his dad.

Here's a few pics. One from when he was a baby. And the other two from what he does best these days. His hair was dyed black and grown long in his band snap and the other doing his solo scene from his school musical.

November 22, 2009

Mauritius and Kisses

I can't blame the season. I love the bloody winter. But I've been feeling a little low since I was here last. Something that comes and goes in spells but not that often. I think it's just the run up to Christmas knowing that my usual rushed efforts won't be including a card and pressie for my mum-in-law who passed away in March. It just struck me that my kids don't have any grandparents at all now and that my crossed fingers don't seem to be doing much via my daughter and her attempts to make me one! She's on fertility treatment as she has polycystic ovaries, making the natural job a bit harder. Mind you, I can just picture the little 'un in a few years with his/her Prodigy tee-shirt on giving it laldy with mum in the sitting room to her CD's and him/her being fascinated by the tongue stud she'll keep popping in and out her mouth...(doesn't beat when grampa used to take out his false teeth out in front of you, Kek. You tried so hard to do the same!). So, I'm picking myself up and shaking off the blues. I'm so impatient. That's my real problem.

I know when the kids notice I'm down. Especially Ross. It's the only time he ever makes me a cup of tea with an added kiss. But he bucked me up. Even had me laughing when he told me he was about to woo his latest date with a Pot Noodle and Saw V. She giggled all the while she was in.

But my best ever pick-me-up is going through old photographs - and trust me I have thousands. It was when I came across this one that gave me the biggest smile. I can remember the first time Ross met his auntie Maryse he was amazed at how little she was. Only 4ft 10 inches in height.

  His first question to her was: "Why are you too wee...?"

  And her answer back was: "Why are you too handsome...?"

 He shrugged. She shrugged. And that was that. But Ross said he'd try and just grow to her height (he was only about six inches away from that back then!) which I suppose was his way of accepting life.

Unfortunately, he didn't manage that. This pic from after my mum-in-law's funeral really tells the story. It was only the second time the boys had met their auntie and they adored her sweet Mauritian accent and her wacky stories. So I guess I've not really got a lot to feel down about. Not with a family as rich (in unity) as mine when times need.

November 11, 2009

Dear Dad

Dear Dad,

As you know it is remembrance day today. The end of WWI. Although you fought in WWII, you never let a year pass without reminding us all of the Poppy Appeal.  How you, and your brave compatriots fought for our country and future. It used to bore some family members, you know, banging on about the war, blah, blah, blah. But I was fascinated at some of the life stories you told. At times I found it hard to believe it was real, but as I grew it all came about before my eyes in books, documentaries and films. Devastating. Horrifying. It never left you. Especially your POW years.

Remember, Dad, when Ross had his Primary 7, WW2 project to do and he won a book token for the best one? It included the drawing he made of the dragon tattoo you had inked on your forearm while in France. And that wonderful interview he had with you about bombs and bombing?  Then the way you recited off your army name and number effortlessly, as if it was fresh off the tongue!! You also learned him a few 'choice' words in German! I think 'Schwein-Hund'  was the mildest one! Those didn't go in the project folder but among his bibliography source reference page, he'd included in huge letters: MY GRAMPA.

I still and will always remind the boys that you were the only one of 5 friends to return home to your little village after the war. Right to your dying day this still hurt you as you felt so guilty meeting the families of your dead friends once Hitler was put in his place. God spared you though, Dad. And I'll be eternally grateful for that, because you were a gem of a man. The most patient, funny, selfless man I knew. Heaven knows how you put up with Mam all those years - but you believed in unity no matter how bad things got.

My very fondest memories of you was when we watched Danny Kaye films together. We knew every song from Hans Christian Anderson and the one we loved best was 'Inchworm'. Your wee twin girls, Ellie and Migi, as we were nicknamed by you, would sing the 'sums' bit in the background while you sang the lyrics. Your voice had a beautiful tone to it. Of course and ironically, you're favourite song from a musical was supposedly Hitler's favourite, too. Edelweiss.  I still can't listen to that without crying. Anybody's version. Daft old sop that I am!

As I grew I loved you best after you'd had a few nips. Your quick wit and patter after a swally was so enchanting and you were a bit of an auld rascal- weren't you? Remember when Migi visited from London with her snooty husband, when her kids and mine were small? How you sighed through every karaoke song until the whisky kicked in and then you took the mic away and got my little ones to sing Irvin Berlin's 'At The Devil's Ball......?' Remember how mortified he was when you changed some of the words? Of course the kiddies didn't have a clue what it all meant but the rest of us got a laugh at it! That was ma Dad.....

Then there was the last ever Christmas you spent with us! Remember that nosy neighbour of mine who just wouldn't bugger off with her son on Xmas Eve? Yapping and yapping. You were getting fed up listening to her 'drivel' and when she mentioned her dad had just had  hip-replacement surgery you asked her loudly....."So whose hip did he get?" And Trevor struggled to keep his laugh in? She left soon after that. You old scamp!.... And don't worry Dad - we'll each keep pouring you a mini-whisky every New Year on your resting place - even if it does kill the grass! I smile at the vision of all those empty miniature Bells bottles that the green-keeper has to tidy away each New Year and Father's Days. I could carry on forever here but sadly, I can't.

Dad you were the best of old buddies. I can remember how you'd bend down, creaking your old bones to tie a kid's shoe lace in case they tripped. You were forever checking the boys. And your parting words every time we left the house was "mind the roads". Since I was a nipper.

The biggest regret in my life was that you never got the chance to see my boys play in their bands. Dad, you were a musical genius. Remember when you learned me to play The Blue Danube with you on the piano? Well, I can still do that - but it doesn't sound the same without you on the chords! You could play any instrument by ear and always encouraged the boys to do the same - lift it and give it a try. Of course, they weren't as gifted as you, but boy did they learn fast! They had rhythm all right!  It was in their blood, their Grampa's blood. Thank you so much, Dad.

I'm saying goodbye with a picture of you with your army friends. Ted, Willie and Jim. How that guitar suits you! You guys really cheered the troops up! And this has been a remembrance day for me, too. But it's dedicated to only one hero.


November 06, 2009

A Bet On Lynette

Bigging them up again! I can't help it. My son's band Casino have just recorded their latest offering called Lynette. It's a wonderful little tune, with wonderful, uncomplicated words. It's even more special (as with most of their songs) because it is based on true life.

The song is about a girl that my son, Ross, fancied from afar. As a teenager still at high school he used to hang around a shop called Fratz that was situated next to a local park, with his mates. He was euphoric when Lynette became a member of the group and basically it's about his gentle pursuit of her - in which he was eventually successful and now wonders what happened to her. And because of the lyrics, I now know that he puffed away in his latter years of high school and had the odd alcopop! But after hearing the song, I think I'll give a belated rollocking a miss. If he'd never met Lynette and her bad habits, then this song might never have come about. Older ones like my old self can even relate to it and it did take me back to my own teenage days - less the fags and booze - and daft schoolgirl crushes. My favourite lines are in the bridge lead up to the chorus that goes as such:

'Oh, Lynette, don't forget, leave me two's on your cigarette.'
Get it on, won't be long, till we kiss like we had never met.'

On November 26th in Behind The Wall in Falkirk, the band are having their first EP launch party, on which Lynette will be included. The song will be up on their website next Wednesday/Thursday after it's been mastered (bloody perfectionists!) and I gaurantee you'll be hooked after a couple of listens. The guys will also be filming their first script video (to Shadow Company) where a certain amount of acting, (with a director) will be taking place. As far as I've fished it's setting is in a hotel after/during a function and Ross will be sitting at the bar with a whisky and a black eye, while Telfer (frontman) walks in with his shirt half hanging out his suit and his tie all squint like he's been in a fight, too, in the opening scene. That's all the little bastards will tell me! The song is actually about a prossie, so I'll be curious to see if that's included. For a young band that's only been together a year, I'd say they're well paying their dues to their fans.

November 03, 2009

Last Day Of Fools......!

One good thing about friends of the offspring is, that if they're tanked up enough, wondrous tales of yore start surfacing. Some Friday nights my older son, Ross, now 20, invites a few mates to his room for a tipple before they hit the very expensive night club in town, otherwise they wouldn't be able to afford to get to 3am. But while popping up with a few snacks and things, they like to spill about silly things. Sometimes I push my luck and quiz them about this and that. Mind you, there will be things that mothers NEVER find out, and we don't want to know anyhow.

Lewis, a friend of his has one of the biggest hearts I know, but also has the biggest gob and was telling me what happened on the last day of school - three years ago. Apart from Ross attending his very last day dressed as an eedjit (photo) his group of close mates had a series of pranks made up and thus went on:

They ran into the library with one of them 'horn in a can' things - that you hear at football matches - and almost gave the clerk a coronary.

They tied adjacent classroom door handles together and banged on the doors simultaneously.

Jars of little fishes (baggy minnows) from a nearby pond were tipped into the staff room toilet sinks.

A huge dick was sprayed in cream or foam (they can't remember) on the head's office door.

And lastly (all that they were admitting to anyhow) bog roll was looted from the toilets and decorated over the trees............

I can see why Ross never confessed to any of this as behaviour like this wouldn't have been tolerated on a normal day. But I can't help smiling when I think of the poor teacher who went to wash her/his hands after a piddle.

November 02, 2009

Head Banger!

I shall be (un) gracing these pages again here soon. This is the busiest week via bands, practice and gigging. Casino are recording a new song this week called Lynette and my other son's band No Need For Idols have week day gigs - some they have to turn down because their schoolwork must come first. Yes, it's an Anadin special week this week! Back soon to catch up!