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Posts Tagged ‘boarding school’

Bright Eyes

Posted by shinymac on September 9, 2008

When I was younger I went to boarding school in Sussex. At this school, I made loads of friends who were also boarders, and who therefore were like sisters to me at the time, although the kind of sisters who I never saw during the holidays, never spent Christmas with, never remembered being born and that kind of thing.

Often, we would feel homesick, especially at night time when we’d all be settling down to try and get some sleep. These emotions would hit hardest at the start of a new term, when we had returned to our second home, and said goodbye to our real families for the next however many weeks.

I used to love singing, in fact, I still do, and I indulge in this hobby only with my kids nowadays. I don’t go to partake in karaokes anymore, and I certainly won’t be singing with The Vultures again (after seeing myself in their video finale!), so lately the singing thing has kind of taken a back burner. But back then? Well back then was a whole different ball game. After all, these people were my (fake) sisters remember, and if you can’t sing in front of your (fake) sisters, then who on earth can you sing in front of?

So I would let rip and try to cheer everyone up. The favourite number back in the days of nuns and midnight feasts, was, of course, Bright Eyes from Watership Down. Although how this cheered anyone up is beyond me, but it seemed to really work.

I would purposely try and sing it as softly as possible, gradually getting quieter and quieter, until everyone was almost asleep, and then I would stop and snuggle myself in to also try and get some shut-eye.
Everyone would say it was soothing, and I really feel like I tried to help. Whether or not this worked or not, I do not know, but right now, I wish I had a me at that age to comfortingly sing “Bright Eyes” to me until I fall asleep.


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It’s birthday time again!

Posted by shinymac on March 16, 2008

The few friends I have are very important to me, I only wish I had the ability to show that more, either by saying the words, or making more time for them than I can. Things have been difficult over the last few months. During the day friends tend to be at work and I am at home with my children. During the evening, I am at work, and they are out at the cinema, or partying (possibly?), or even just chilling out at home, something I wish I could be doing at that time.

One friend who I feel particularly guilty about not being there for as much lately, is Louisa.
Louisa and I met when I was about 10 years old. We were at boarding school together, and we became really good friends. There were 4 of us who were close, and we became more like sisters for the 3 years I stayed at the school.
On a school trip to France where we had to stay with families in Strasbourg, I told the family that Louisa could really “shake her thang” to New Kids On The Block. So, she had to get up in front of the whole family, including their super-cool daughter who was some amazing kind of dancer, and bust her moves, whilst I sat peeing myself in the corner (and simultaneously worrying about the tongue sandwiches we were going to be given the next day for our packed lunch).

When I left boarding school and moved away, Louisa and I kept in touch. From the age of 13 onwards we wrote to each other regularly, and sent postcards whenever we went away anywhere. Out of everyone I had left behind at that school, Louisa was the only one I managed to stay in touch with during this time.

When I was 18, we met up with each other again. I got a train to Cambridgeshire where she lived, and we spent the weekend together. However, at the time, she was with a nasty boyfriend who got jealous of our shared history, which seemed a little weird.
Thankfully, she soon realised that this guy was no good for her, and got rid of him.

We saw each other a handful of times then, until last year, when through sheer coincidence, we ended up living a mere 15 minute drive away from each other. We started going to the cinema on an evening, we went down for a boarding school reunion, she came out with us for New Year, and it was brilliant to have my old friend back.

However, now I am working evenings, we hardly have a chance to go to the cinema anymore. Weekends are kind of precious as they’re the only time I get to put my little girls to bed and read them stories, and money is tight as usual.
But, Louisa is still there, and when we meet up, it’s like no time has elapsed. I just feel bad that I don’t have more time on my hands.

So, I just want to wish one of my oldest friends (and by oldest I mean in length of friendship, not age), a very happy 30th birthday.
May you thoroughly enjoy your 30th year, and may many good things fall upon you during it. Happy birthday Louisa x


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