I remember when I was seven years old – the day I turned seven. We, my sister and I, were staying at the Hans Brinker Inn in the Netherlands as our parents enjoyed two weeks in Paris.
I was furious with my parents for having abandoned us for those two weeks. At Hans Brinker every meal consisted of toast – toast with sugar and cinnamon for breakfast, toast with cheese or tomato for lunch, for dinner – I do not recall.
But that day, the day of my seventh birthday, we were eating our lunch of toast, and our parents came to pick us up. My sister, who was only four at the time, ran up to our parents. I, on the other hand, held them responsible. I was incensed.
The owner had pushed me down the stairs. They separated me and my sister into different rooms. She didn’t understand. Her roommates didn’t speak English. I was punished for going to her when she cried. I begged for them to put us in the same room.
So, I ignored my parents. Seething, I kept my back to them. They thought I didn’t want to leave.
Saturday I wrote this memory exercise (prompt = “I remember”) at Judy Reeves‘ Speak Memory workshop at the Southern California Writers’ Conference LA14 (Irvine). Thank you, Judy and all the other great workshop leaders, speakers, and conference organizers.
In her post How fucking old am I? Jenny Lawson aka The Bloggess asks, “Was it just my school where the senior portraits always looked like inexpensive glamour shots?”
Who’s more glamorous in their senior high school graduation photo, Jenny Lawson The Bloggess or me? Judge for yourself.
Texas vs. Manhattan Beach, California. Fur stole? Nope. We wore crushed velvet. Big hair? Nope. I probably didn’t even blow mine dry. Why? It dried on its own. When I wore it long, it did take hours to dry, especially since it’s foggy at the beach. Still, it does eventually dry. Plus, unlike Jenny, I’m pretty sure I’m wearing my bra under the crushed velvet stole.
Evidence of the Crime
Okay, so I just got back from a lovely birthday dinner out with my husband and son. What did I find on the floor of the kitchen upon our return? My birthday box of See’s chocolates! One or both of our dogs (not sure if it was a solo job or a conspiracy) had taken the box from the counter and eaten ALL the dark chocolate and coconut candies. I hadn’t even tried one yet. The dark chocolate walnut clusters and the dark chocolate covered marzipan were left untouched. Thumper tried licking the floor clean of all traces of chocolate even after we returned and reclaimed the box. Not sure if that absolves Coco of blame, for he is the more wily of the two. He knows to act nonchalant as if completely unaware that a crime had taken place.