When I was young, between about seven and fifteen years old, my dad worked full-time, though rarely at the weekends and my mum was a housewife or what these days they call a ‘stay at home mom‘. Those were the days in the 70s when most women stayed at home when they had kids.
I remember my mum did house work everyday which, thinking about that now in an age where it’s obvious most people don’t even know what an iron is, amazes me! The only time she didn’t do it every day, and even then she might squeeze in a quick vacuuming during the morning or evening, was during our school holidays. Most of the time, we entertained ourselves; played outside with our friends or went to our bedrooms to read or, in my case, play with my chemistry set (street cred totally thrown now!) But occasionally, as good mums know, you have to show willing and participate in a little ‘kid-time’.
So, whilst my dad was at work, she would sometimes make a packed lunch and take us into the country for a treat. We loved the country, my sister and brother and I. Our town was fairly close to and surrounded by countryside but it was still around twelve to fifteen miles out and my mum had to cart us and the packed lunch (in bags) on about three different buses to get there!
Sitting here, after an exhausting days work and wanting to do nothing more than eat in front of the television,
I really don’t know how she could have been bothered. I have a feeling my parents were more familial than I could ever be!
Those days were wonderful to me. I have such fond memories of being so well looked after, of being brought up to experience life beyond my bedroom and having the kind of parents who loved sharing their passions with us kids.
I remember one such trip we went on, it was raining before we had even stepped out of the house. It seems odd to me now, knowing that my own kids would chain themselves to the games console on such a day rather than go anywhere, but we didn’t even question why we were going for a picnic in the rain. Three buses later and we’re wandering through wet woods and eating our picnic whilst stood up under a dripping tree! I loved it. It was what we did, part of my life in my family.
I will always cherish those days and even now I will go jogging in a torrential downpour or just stand in the back garden and let the rain wash over me. Lovely.