Things I didn’t know about my mother. (Part 23)

18 09 2012

Mother belongs to a generation where she only had one partner- my dad – and even though he passed away nearly fourteen years ago now I’m still convinced she would feel disloyal or unfaithful in some way if she even entertained the thought of another partner. Not that she has lacked admirers. There was Harry, Dax Wax hair, a paunch framed by a waistcoat, who took a shine to her – and even though mother was flattered by the attention she received initially, quickly began hiding when she sensed that he might be becoming a bit too amorous. Door bells unanswered, letters not replied to. But persistent he was, even going as far as to emptying a box of chocolates through the letter box when he discovered that the box itself wouldn’t go through. Unaware mother opened the front door and trampled coffee creams all the way into the living room.Even after mother had read the little gift card that came through with them, stained with strawberry fondant, she remained unmoved, declaring him to be a bit odd. ‘He’s a playboy, constantly chasing woman and not knowing what to do with them when he catches them’. Anyway needless to say the lack of attention meant that he did eventually disappear from the scene, leaving mother I suspect, a little sadder for the lack of admiration. Complicated? Who am I to say, but loyal to my father mother most certainly was and is to this very day. A trailer park owner once took a shine to her as well, repeatedly saying ‘Wow’ when she wound down the rented car window to ask him for directions. I do believe she blushed slightly before re-establishing her composure, but the sparkle in her eyes remained for the rest of the day and indeed for the rest of the holiday. That brief flurry of romance is still often fondly recalled by her. More recently I’ve noticed that when mother is not being admired by other men she tends to remind me of how many people say how young she looks for her age, especially when we are going out. I then reaffirm with a nod and a couple of additional compliments, she then smiles, does a double take in the mirror, and I start breathing normally again, reminding her at the same time to wear her silver grey raincoat which really compliments her eyes. With a final dab of powder, mother not me, we are then ready for a night out on the tiles, which usually consists of pub food, jazz music, an Irish coffee and whispered conversations about girls displaying tomorrows washing tonight and how they fail to leave anything to the imagination. ‘How things have changed’.

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