I've just decided to start this new category. I plan to use it to describe childhood memories. Every so often I have a memory that I think "I'm going to forget that in 10 minutes and never remember it again" which I think is really sad. So here is a place where I will put those memories as a permanent record.
I remembered this afternoon, for no particular reason (and that's usually how it happens) that, one day a long time ago I visited a house, the owner of which I can't remember. I was with my Mum and my sister (and possibly my brother - but I can't remember him being there). We were visiting this person's house for the first time as far as I recall and they lived up the road from the Fitzgeralds, another family which we were (and still are) friends with. And the Fitzgeralds, or at least some of them, were there as well.
The house was in a street that was lined with Camphor Laurel trees which in a lot of ways really characterise Toowoomba and in particular the area which this house was in. The yard of the house itself had, as I recall, a well established garden. It was the kind of garden where the air is perpetually cool, the feeling always tranquil and the wildlife rich and abundant. It was also the kind of garden that was perfect for exploring and finding places to hide or construct a cubby house or just get grubby for the fun of it. The house had a veranda which was open to the garden and made for a pleasant place to relax.
On this day, the residents of the house were entertaining their guests on the veranda and the various children were playing in the yard and in the garden. I don't remember any of the other children in particular and couldn't say if they were regular features in my life at that age, but it would be a good bet to make that at least one or two of the Fitzgerald kids were there. As I said, we were all playing in the yard and I seem to recall a tennis ball, though I couldn't tell you if it was an important component to the game we were playing. A few of us (and I'm sure it wasn't just me) were playing in a particular garden which was the home of a tree fern.
I'm getting to the crux of the memory now, so if you're starting to wonder what the point is, don't worry it's on its way. Then again if you're expecting there to be a point to these memories you might be disappointed more often than not.
I was wearing, that day, a brown tracksuit (possibly my school uniform, even though I think it was a weekend). Not the plastic sports tracksuit kind, but the soft cotton type; the kind you might wear to bed. Little did I know the fronds of a tree fern have these tiny little bits (for want of a better word) on them that are particularly susceptible to being brushed off and getting lodged in clothing. These bits are tiny, so small (and brown) that it is near impossible to see them when lodged in the weave of a brown tracksuit. Before I knew what was happening I had hundreds of thousands of these invisible things stuck all through my clothes and they were itching me to the point of it being painful.
Of course I quickly and quietly raised the issue with my Mum, but as I recall she wasn't all that interested. She must have been having too much fun socialising or something. Whatever the case was, she made it clear that there was nothing she could do and that we weren't leaving any time soon. I spent the rest of the visit - what seemed like hours and I suspect probably was at least one - in the car with all my clothes off except my undies to avoid the itching. Even my undies were laced with these tiny bits of fern tree and it was painful just to sit there.
This has been a painful memory that now, thanks to this website, I won't forget. I expect that as time passes there will be better memories to describe.