Wednesday, 24 April 2013

My Only Sunshine

So this is it then, is it?

The time has arrived.

That’s it. Winter is over, just like that? No slow transition? Now long goodbyes? Just a whistle and a pop and then gone.

Snow one minute, then sunshine, daffodils and distant lawn mowers the next. That is how I am treated.

The bitterest coldest winter, which had been biting at my face and toes and that little bit behind my right shoulder where the draft always seems to get in, just switches to summer.

What happens now?

Well now is when the madness sinks in. Grown men wear shorts, oversized women tuck their pendulous breasts into their unhappy floaty trousers (don’t question me, I’ve seen it, in places like Aldi and the internet) and children frolic and scream and generally fill up the place.

Usually I get some sort of in-between bit.

Where it is warm enough to walk around without a coat, but not so hot that you crumble under the weight of your own sweat. Where there are clouds that hide the burning rays of the sun, ensuring that I am not blinded by opening the curtains.

That has not happened here. The occasional and limited rain has been most welcome, but the days now seem to be filled with bright, overwhelming sunlight. The deranged happiness of ‘people’ seeps into my life through the window – I hear their jubilant laughter and inane chatter, people have ‘pic-nics’ and ‘start running again’.

“Oooh I’ve just started running again! Would you like to take up running again?”


I stopped running when I was four. There was I, happily running around the edge of the field (for no discernable purpose) with my fellow pupils, not caring if I was in front or behind, simply enjoying the wonderful state of ‘being’ when from the depths of parental psyche my father decides that now is the time to publicly declare his support for my athleticism.

The phrase “Come on, Holly!” Still has the power to make me sick with humiliation.

So how did I react to this at the time? Did it spur me onto the finish line? Did it somehow provide me with more energy, more speed, more motivation to compete?

No. Of course it bloody didn’t. I stopped running. I folded my arms (as best as I could manage, I always had trouble with that for some reason, I thought perhaps I might be an alien left here by my mother race, always waiting to be collected by a superior intelligence. I’m still waiting). And I promptly left the field, and my running career, behind me forever.

“What are you getting at?” I hear you ask, bemusedly.

I don’t know. I can’t think. The infernal sun is searing through my brain with rays of hope and joy and spring and it is rotting me from inside.

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