Monday, January 22, 2007

When the Fox was Fourteen, She Watched a Sci-fi Film in Margate

Last Monday it was + 10 C degrees outside. Nicely warm, damp and dark.
Today it is -12 C, crispy and white. Unfortunately I didn't see anything behind my frozen windscreen. But I knew it was all there: slippery pavements, blue skies, snowflakes on your lashes, taste of the wet mittens, kids' tongues stuck onto frozen metal.
No wonder we're on the Lonely Planet's "Go List" amongst Antarctica, Central Bulgaria, Northern Patagonia and Cornwall.

Whilst scraping on my screen I thought about my own Want to Go List and it's irritating impossibleness, but also the places where I had already been.
Like Isle of Thanet. What made me travel there when I was 14? Of course now, twenty years later, I know it really isn't an island like Isles of Scilly or Isle of Man.
But I have never been that good with directions and instead of Isle of Wight I ended up living in Ramsgate with my best friend Katarina, a butcher, Avon lady and two Swedish girls. [Hej Carin och Susanna, om du läser det, hälsningar!]

One day In Kent:
T. Fox: Oh, I'm so glad it's Sunday and we don't have to eat those horrible pastries.
[Every day our small Tupperware boxes were stuffed with small pastries filled with some brown, unidentified meat and gristle, which was stuck between the teeth and possibly made me vegetarian in the long run.]
Katarina: Do you know where Emma and Steven are?
T. Fox: No.
Katarina: So, let's have a feast! [opens the food cupboard]
T. Fox: Mmm... hungry...
Katarina: Do you want to eat Weetabix or Weetabix? We don't have any milk though.

The cupboards were empty. Jut half a box of Weetabix.
After five hungry hours we still had that half a box of Weetabix.
T. Fox: Have you got any money?
Katarina: Nothing left, I'm sorry.
T. Fox: I have just the amount for the t-shirt...
Katarina: You've got money, you little [censored]!

So, we took my money, went to the shop near the fish & chips, where I got a love letter from a shy school boy.
[Hello Simon, I saved your letter.]
We bought ten Twix bars and four bottles of Fanta, and I didn't have that pink "is that your banana in your pocket"- t-shirt, which might have been a good thing after all.
Now, twenty years later I know I should have invested in property.

Words in Finnish:
tuulilasi = a windscreen
ärsyttävä = irritating
matkustaa = to travel


Artist once known as Dave said...

Well, Finland is definitely on my 'to visit' list. I don't think I've ever been to Ramsgate though, despite being born in Kent, and living there for 22 years.

Sopwith-Camel said...

I was scraping my windscreen too this morning, but for the first time this year.

I grew up in Kent, and went back to the Shepherdswell area last summer to look for the ghosts of the old railway that used to run through the coalfields there. The coalfields are all now closed, but some of the railway still exists.

Taiga the Fox said...

Actually yesterday it was marvellous here. It looked like that forest in Narnia, all trees covered with beautifully frozen snow, which made me think I will never leave this country again. But my windscreen was frozen also inside and the central locking of the car went all funny, which made me to think how nice it would be to live in New Zealand, if there weren't those giant spiders there.

Bowleserised said...

Taiga, you didn't nip over to London the other day, did you?

BiB said...

Taiga, New Zealand is fine on the creepy-crawly front. They have one naughty spider - the katipo - and no snakes. And the country is wonderful. But they don't speak Finnish at all. Which makes it much less wonderful than Finland.

Taiga the Fox said...

B, oh dear. I just can't figure out why they had to shut the shop. I had had a shower and all. Pests! Hmph. I begin to get a bit agitated again.

BiB, I knew there was something less wonderful in New Zealand, but didn't know it was that. I agree. And they have still one spider too much.