A comment made on one of my February posts triggered a memory which was the catalyst for starting this particular collection .
In Meet the In-laws, I gave you a little bit of background about my relationship with them. Subsequent postings have hopefully made you smile, and I hope this will do the same.
On this particular day, we’d taken them both down to Weymouth (South Coast resort in the UK) . Our intention was to have a look around and then treat them to lunch in a rather good cafe we’d discovered some months before. It was tucked away in one of the side streets, but offered such excellent value for money, plus everything was cooked fresh, that it had become one of our regular haunts whenever we went there.
Oh dear. Mum wouldn’t even walk through the door. This meant that the all day breakfast (two of everything and a huge mug of tea plus toast for under a fiver) that we’d been looking forward to was kicked into touch and we had to think again.
Walking down the High Street towards the quay, Hubby and I noticed the plaque in the pavement denoting the site of the old Maypole. Completely in accord, we put our hands up in an arc and danced around a maypole that was no longer there (yeah, my dancing in the street goes back a bit) .
Mum was disgusted and walked away in a huff. Dad found it hysterical and was laughing so much, he almost collapsed in a shop doorway, and the young lad holding his Mummy’s hand walking by wanted to know what we were doing. She looked at us with some hostility and told him we were probably drunk, which made the three of us laugh even louder.
We eventually found a fish and chip shop with a restaurant attached and went in.
Mum was not very impressed, but hunger got the better of her, and as it was our treat, it was our budget. I’m a stickler for that. It wasn’t so much that we weren’t exactly dressed for posh eating, but there was no way I’d let them pay for an invitation of our making.
She sniffed and fussed as there were no napkins, the cutlery was water stained, and she complained that her chips were cold. Ours burnt our mouths, so we ignored her.
She moaned that her mug was chipped, so Dad unceremoniously swapped it with his and told her to shut up and eat her dinner.
The atmosphere was strained, but the meal was good, hot and filling, and at least Dad was happy.
Walking along the Esplanade, there was a kiosk selling Candy Floss (cotton candy to our American friends). I love the stuff, and as a child, would end up with more on me than in me, and it was a swine for my Mum to get out of my clothes.
These days they give it vibrant colours and put it in bags, but this was the stuff of my childhood, pink, fluffy and on a stick. Hubby bought me some, and we sat down on a bench in one of the bus shelters to enjoy it and the view.
Mum and Dad had trotted off to look at the traditional sand sculpture further on. I can’t remember what it was that year, but do recall one similar to this from many years before.
Sea Horses Sand Sculpture
Weymouth used to be renowned for it’s sculptures, be they on current topics or popular films, so they were always worth a look. Some were absolutely stunning.
Judging by the conversation of the elderly group next to us in the bus shelter, they too were on an outing. One of the old ladies kept looking at me and this pink fluff I was attacking with such gusto.
Eventually she asked me what it was.
‘It’s spun sugar, or what we call candy floss,’ I replied. ‘ Would you like to try it?’
‘Oh, yes please! I’ve never had it and you’re obviously enjoying it, so it must be nice!’
Marge Simpson with a pink rinse
I pulled off a long strip, and handed it over with a clean tissue from the packet in my pocket.
‘It tends to get a bit sticky,’ I explained.
I have never seen an adult enjoy eating something so much. This lady must have been 80 if she was a day, and I found it so sad that she had never had the chance to enjoy such a simple treat. I asked if she’d like some more, but she declined saying she was going to ask ‘George’ to get her some.
As we walked away, Mum came up to me and wanted to know why I’d given a complete stranger some of my candy floss.
‘Because she’d never had any before.’
Mum had never had any before either, but felt it was beneath her to try such a childish confection.
She thought my actions were foolish, and although I tried, I couldn’t make her understand.
No doubt there were many things about me she thought were foolish, but if all it took to make an elderly lady’s day was to give her a strip of cotton candy, why not? It made me feel GREAT!