A Boiling Pool & Camp Couture (26-27 January)

Only two days in this post? What’s going on? Where’s the rest of the week?

A Life in WordsWithout giving anything away, there is a major event approaching: the kind of thing few people experience in a lifetime, and I had the …foresight? …to record as much detail about it as possible, in order to “never forget”.

The upshot is, for the next nine days – beginning Wednesday 29 January – I will be posting daily because of the volume of material (and potentially extra commentary) I recorded about the event. Buckle up and enjoy the ….”ride”…..

Monday 26/1/87

AUSTRALIA DAY. Couldn’t get to sleep last night till around 12:00-1:00 or something – TV & lights were on – Mrs P asleep on the lounge. Eventually Monique got her up. [Apart from the annoyance of sleep deprivation, I have a vague recollection of being a little shocked by this: I’d never seen either of my parents fall asleep in front of the TV. They were The Parents, the Adults – they were the ones whose job it was to wake US up and send us to bed!] Slept in not long. Fi came while Monique was in the shower. We watched Night Patrol again for Fi, then went swimming. Bored … just talking after that. I was “hanging out” for a call from Mark, but I didn’t get one. After another swim, we returned the video, then waited outside for Mrs D. Talked a lot today – mostly about Fi’s trip. . .and the camp – CAN’T WAIT!! So hot at her house! And the pool’s boiling. Well, Martin came – car load of Stew’s friends & one of Martin’s. . made a few stops but I got home. Ate dinner, unpacked etc. Rang him .. he was at Keith’s. Stuff him. A Life in WordsI’ll ring tomorrow arvy – see if he wants to see Golden Child – I think I’m going to town tomorrow with Fi & Moni. Will ring in morning 9:30. Gonna watch this comedy then bed! Oh Mark, I have to see you before I go back to school!! Especially! [Why especially? *shakes head* So… insecure…]

Tuesday 27/1/87

Went to town – took Monique. Was boring. Walked round – I got blisters of course. Saw Joannah, Megan & Marge. Monique looked for shoes, then we walked to a disposal store – trying on army shorts for the camp. A Life in WordsAnd to 2nd hand store looked for old jeans- nothing was “right” there, either. [We would’ve been wanting to cut the legs off them…] Damn – caught bus back to monique’s just after seeing Fi. Swam in hot pool… “bludged”, and finally went for a [bike] ride … ended up going past Mark’s place (at 100km/hr!!) which embarrassed me. Talked to Nelly, next door & Leonie while mum talked to Mrs P. finally got home around 7:30. Rang Beka back and then Mark – a good phone call – talked almost nonstop – hardly said any “lovey-dovey” words… I thought he was being really “friendly” & that was it. See, I got his (4th) letter today. And it is gorgeous – so much about “us”. Oh I’m in love! It’s 9:40… time flies …must get to bed now or I’ll never wake up in the morning.

Mucking Around, Love Signs & Jaffles (19-25 January)

Monday 19/1/87

Blitz day! I got a letter and a card! In his letter there were some really gorgeous things. – it started Hi cutey! The best I’ve received yet. Um, I went with mum & Jules .. we stayed at [dad’s] work a long time talking to dad & Jenny (mostly about my career) A Life in WordsShit what am I going to do? [The very same anxiety pretty much all high school kids experience…] After went to Earlville. I bought 2 cards One for mark for ‘fun’ like his and one for Valentine’s day. Also, Countdown Diaries have been sold out everywhere. Shit. Then after a very hot, boring afternoon, Mark rang, inviting me to Angie J’s party Wed. night. That means Robbie’ll be there (saw him in town too; dodged outta sight!) OH NO! No worries; I’ll be with Mark. [so you think: things rarely go to plan] So we talked for ages when I rang back. We’re going to Devil’s tomorrow. I have to ring him 9:05. God it’s hot. We still need more rain than we’ve been getting.

Tuesday 20/1/87

Well today, mum woke me with 2 letters from Monique. She’s having a ball by the sounds of it. I waited till about 10:20 to ring Mark. At 11:30 I got there. He was already there – had been for a dip. At Devil’s I jumped off the “cliff”. once. (!!) [I don’t know if you would call it a cliff – but it was a sheer, sudden drop into the water from its edge. It wasn’t a very popular swimming hole.] we were talking & mucking around. Went to Brimsmead shop sat for ages. Mucking around. Saw Judy (Judy F.) walking past. And she saw us. (!!) [the double exclamation marks potentially referring to the thought “great, word will get around”…] We went back to another nearby (shallow) place for swim again. Mucked around. Was really nice there. Got out & talked & mucked around. Then finally back to the shop. And there, while mucking around, I (looking through his wallet) [I have a feeling this was not as bad as it sounds… almost like I’d been given permission… he may have been sitting right there…] found an ‘old’ love note from Nicole. I didn’t read it but it was signed off, “from [privacy omission] Nicole” (typing) I thought why is he keeping it? I’m a little worried now. A Life in WordsAnyway his wallet, sunnies & tape (UB40) are here – thought he’d be seeing me 2morrow. Rang him. & Fi. She’s coming to the party. It’s 11:30. Gonna watch a show now, then flop. I’m exhausted. An O.K. day. Wished it could’ve been a bit different. [How exactly?]

Wednesday 21/1/87

Waste of time waiting up to watch that show. Wasn’t good at all. So today mum woke me at 8:00. I was tired & grumpy. Went to Nana’s. Was boring I was so hot. [From memory, Nana lived in a little brick shoe-box of a unit, that had very poor ventilation. Back in the 80’s air-conditioning was not standard in rental properties.] Went to town after to do various things. Saw Mark & Keith on the the way!! Got my new skool shoes (just like my other ones) & did grocery shopping. At home I thought about the party. [As you read on, it turns out that we weren’t actually invited, so I was feeling uncomfortable about potentially gate-crashing…] I rang Fi. She didn’t want to go either. When Mark rang, he made “compromise”. He’d ask Angie when he got there if Fi & I could come & ring us up. That we did. At about 8:45 we left. Martin took us there. Talked to Mark a little; walked round. It was BORING. At 10:30, Mark, me, Fi, Sharon, Keith, Michelle (W) walked to Croc. Rock. → only 2 or 3 streets away. I got in easily Fi didn’t but later; yes – without even paying [the cover charge, evidently …that was probably only $3 or something dirt cheap like that]! Mark & I spent a lot of time in Smithy’s talking – mucking around. The “others” came & went as they pleased. We held hands for sometime ..later in the morning. A Life in WordsSoon it became natural holding hands all the time. then, arms → [the arrow led across to the next page of the diary…]

Thursday 22/1/87

round each other.. then I was meant to go with Fiona (& Martin) but she, being really happy [for me] & great friend convinced Terry to give me a lift home. Then it happened after she left. We were standing near a bar when Heather (blind)  came over, raving on. Told us how “fucking gorgeous” we looked together and to “kiss”. Yes but it was yuk.. [because… awkward! But…] when she left… It wasn’t. we stood there for ages. It was beautiful. [Of course! What other descriptive would a lovestruck teenaged girl use?]  Then eventually, they were coming in the same car. At 4:30 we left. We made so many stops. Mark was being gorgeous. [Privacy omission] Then he left at his place. Sad. Terry & Harry wanted to go to Freshy Ck. Sharon didn’t mind. So we stayed there till it got light. (Boring for me – my mind on Mark.) [of course…] Sharon rode my bike home. I had ≈ 2hrs sleep. Couldn’t sleep again, the rest of the day. Watched TV. Mark rang around 6:15. Saying ‘nice things. Gorgeous things. He wants to see me tomorrow. I rang Sharon – she’s gonna ride my bike here. I can’t wait – I want to see Mark again too. I’d spend my time with him rather than anyone else Is 9:40. I’m not even tired. Just boiling hot. Mark ♥♥♥

Friday 23/1/87

Today I ate nothing – only tonight – for dinner. I had a piece of bread & butter and an egg waffle. A Life in Words[I meant ‘jaffle’, but I think we might have grown up calling them waffles (which explains why I was so puzzled when I first heard about North American waffles years later, served up with bacon & maple syrup). Jaffles differ from ordinary toasties in that they’re sealed shut at the edges. Before electric toasted sandwich makers, there were a ‘jaffle irons’ (see pic) which we used to take camping.] See, sharon came round about 8:30 and I rang mark at 9:00. he said to ring him back when Sharon had gone (which was about 10:45) and we’d leave for Devil’s. Spent 1st 2hrs or so in water, mucking round with a stone few little kisses. Lying in the shade, together for another 1 or 2 hrs, then for another swim some other place for an hour or so. After sat for another 1/2hr & 1/2hr “saying goodbye” That was a yummy part. I rang him tonight. We can’t decide what to do on the weekend.. I must ring him tomorrow arvy with more suggestions. Watching the movie now. Was 36º at 10:00am today – dropped back to 35º rest of the day. Reckon be the same tomorrow. I’ll watch the cricket I guess. Tonight’s phonecall was boring – I said he’d get sick of seeing me. [Oh gawd…] He said never. I hope so. Am proud about my appetite. I wasn’t hungry with Mark. Wonder if that means anything. [Um, duh! Loss of appetite is just one of many symptoms or side-effects of ‘Being in Love’ and there’s science to back it up! Check out this article on live science.com website: it lists all the Signs… my little 16 year old self was displaying pretty much all of them…] 10:35 now. Should ring Fi sometime. And moni’s comin’ home sunday!! ACE!

Saturday 24/1/87

Slept in till about 9:00. I watched TV for a while in the morning, then for the rest of the day cut things out of my ’84 Dollys and tidied up (sorted out) the pile of junk on a dining chair, that has been there for days. Am watching the movie. . .a special about the history of musicals/broadway. It’s 10:00. I rang Mark around 5:00. He sounded fine for the first few minutes but the ultimate boredom of the phone call soon took effect. That must change. Anyway I’m ringing him tomorrow night to find out about going to Crystals on Australia Day with Terry (& the “mob” – Monique!) Was so hot – 36º max. But got a (kind of) storm late this arvy – and it’s still raining. Oh, I’m now being overwhelmed with fatigue: I’m bloody tired. Ate more today 3 pieces toast, banana, 4 shredded wheatmeal biccys & some crumbed steak & cheese & milk. And water & diet coke. [Ugh! Diet Coke. It’s frightening how much of that crap we consumed; sometimes mum, Julia and I would go through a 1.5 litre bottle in one day. Disgusting.] Pity, that!! Oh well. I’m looking slimmer I think. monique left Brissy today! HOORAY! [She would have been coming home by bus, which used to be the cheapest way to travel back then. It took a painful 24-26 hours as well, but airfares were just way too expensive in the 80’s.]

Sunday 25/1/87

Woke to a putrid, stinking hot day. Mum washed the windows. After helping a little, I cut out magazine pictures. Did that all morning (under my fan) till we went to see Nana. In hospital [to this day I am not certain what exactly my grandmother’s health issues were, apart from rheumatoid arthritis, and therefore have no idea why she was hospitalised], we just sat watching cricket, Jules & I. Was boring. When we got home, Monique called me, asked me over for the night. I rode over at about 4:20. A Life in WordsGot there about 4:45. Her pool is HOT!! [No shade = tepid pool water] We talked, then rode to the video shop & got out NIGHT PATROL (embarrassing the guy made us ring Mrs P. to get her consent cause it was an ‘R’ rated movie.) Back home, we rushed off to Pizza Hut to get our pan pizza. I rang mark when I got back. He hadn’t decided what he was doing tomorrow. I suggested he ring us, tomorrow. Then after saying bye, Moni & I had pizza & during the video (sick!) [as in, crap. “Sick” had not positive connotations back then] Fiona rang. She’s coming over tomorrow for the day. Had a late night.

The Belly Fixation, A Disappointing Date & Immersion in Fiction (12-18 January)

Monday 12/1/87

It was hell trying to get to sleep last night. To bed at 10:00; I could not sleep… lay moving frequently, ended up listening to the radio. About 2:00 I would’ve gotten to sleep I don’t know why I was so restless. Anyway, I woke rather early (??) It was hot. After mum left, Jules & I sunbaked till 9:50. (My stomach’s looking nice ‘n’ brown!) [Ah that stomach. It’s been the (physical) bane of my life.] Time went quickly. Around 11:30 Mark rang (he’d just woken up.) Talked for over an hour …going to [see the movie] Aliens on Wednesday night! (Julia wants to come too) I think I might’ve hung up on a bad note, hope not. Went to Kmart & Earlville with mum & Jules after – got more new socks & new singlets! That’s it, though. I want one of those tops, sleeveless with a high (turtle) neck. For Wed night. Fi rang (well I rang her) Justine F’s going to Brissy & wants us to go to Pancake House Wednesday night. Can’t wait! I can go, then go to [the Cinema] Capri from there. Then Croc Rock with Mark after the movies. oooh! I can’t wait! my stomach seems to be going flatter & browner! Must tone it up. Ooh, everything’s going good! Had an 1½-2 hr phone call from Beka→ all about Mark nearly. Is 10:35. wonder if I’ll get to sleep alright tonight?

Tuesday 13/1/87A Life in Words

Here I was, trying to sleep in (rather effortlessly for once! Yahoo!) & mum comes in . . “it’s Sharon. She wants to know if you’d like to go to the movies.” It was 7:30. [The point being, no movies began screening before 9:30am, so why did she have to disrupt my slumber?] I did though. Labyrinth is EXCELLENT. I love fantasy. That Is pure fantasy – beautiful romance. I loved it! God it’s hot. Walked round for awhile after. Caught 3:15 bus home- Mima, fi & polly also did! At home, read the letter Mark sent me. [I’m assuming a new one had arrived] It really is cute. Some gorgeous  things – calling me “Princess[back then, being a ‘Princess’ had no negative connotations…] and saying about my “cute giggle” and wants to think of me (wants me to send him a tape with me talking & laughing!) HaHa! Cute! So I wrote one back immediately. Rode to shops & posted it immediately. Have tried to ring him but is engaged. (for finalities on plans for tomorrow night.) [Desperado!] Oh dear. […you said it!] Am really looking forward to it! Is 8:55. Should I try again? [Really? I’m surprised mum let you. It was a kind of unspoken rule in our household that it was rude (inconsiderate) to call people after 8pm.] Why not? [Because it’s ‘too late’?] Nope – still engaged. Maybe their phone’s on the blink? [“on the blink” is Aussie slang for “not working”] Hot night.

Wednesday 14/1/87

A Life in Words

my top wasn’t that fitted, nor that short…

I can’t quite remember what I did today .. I think I woke and went to Smithfield Shopping Centre with mum to do the grocery shopping. I got a white sleeveless midriff high necked (turtlenecked) T shirt. At home I (can’t remember really what I did.). sunbaked for a while. About 5:00 or so I began to get ready. I wore my navy & white striped singlet dress as a skirt on (just above) my hips with Jules’ white belt, my new shirt & black shoes. [I can clearly picture this outfit. We were pretty creative with our outfits back then, thanks to the likes of Madonna, Boy George, Cyndi Lauper et al, who spawned the messy, layered fashion trend.] My hair was loaded with hairspray [aka Madonna/Cyndi L]. Picked up fi. Stayed short time at Pancake House – Justine, Leanne, Linda, Fiona, Mima & Brent were there when we (Jules Amanda & I) left. At Capri I saw him & Keith as soon as I walked in, but walked straight over to the ticket box. I sat. They “fretted” about tickets – the price. Eventually walked in when the attendant wasn’t there! Anyway nothing happened. A Life in Words[As in, no “making out”. As if it would, with his mate sitting right there with us.] I watched the movie – almost all of it & best I did was hold on to Mark’s jacket sleeve (wrap my arm around his kind of.) Aliens wasn’t really scary at all. After, we found Fi downstairs. She’d waited 1½hrs for us. [Poor pet] Went with [privacy omission]‘s dad [another parent complicit in our underage clubbing?] to Croc. Rock→ [story continued over the page…]

Thursday 15/1/87

for the first time ever (at C.R.) I wasn’t asked for ID at all & for the 1st time ever Keith & Mark were! 3 of us walked up. Fi got in later only about 10-15mins later.  Was rather dull that night. We did dance “My Favourite Waste of Time” came on. Mark wasn’t into dancing that night. It was rather dull… I got depressed & that’s caused my day-long depression today. I think now that I made a mountain out of a molehill. Just some things about “marriage” [?!] & Mark doesn’t like my moodiness. [I think it’s fair enough to feel a bit crappy if you feel you’re being criticised.] I was quite depressed and the night did not end on a high note. In fact, I worried & was very moody all day today. I wonder why he never calls me and other things like that. Does he really care? How much does he care? There was a girl he talked to a lot whom I thought was [privacy omission] The girl he used to “love”. I worry too much. [Ya think? At least you’re aware of it…] I watched TV mostly read children’s literature to stop thinking. [Possibly why I love movies and books to this day: healthier forms of escapism than, say, drugs…] Beka rang then came over And I rang Fi tonight. She makes so much sense. I wish I had her attitudes to life. [I clearly didn’t have a clue back then that you could train your ‘attitudes’…] SO HOT 2DAY Is 10:05 GOT ABOUT 5HRS SLEEP THIS MORNING ∼5 till 10

A Life in WordsFriday 16/1/87

Today I immersed myself in fiction again, but watching a bit more TV as well (who says that’s not fiction?) of course it is. [Oooh, some premature wisdom there!] My appetite was small I was surprised. [Stress can kill appetite] It was very hot. I was very tired. We went to see Nana in the afternoon. I ate 2 icecreams on the way home. [Emotional eating. Food as a crutch.] I feel and look slimmer, concerning my stomach. All I need is to exercise. My diet’s OK. (I mean concerning Kj intake – not nutrients) [At least I was aware of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ food and the notion of ‘empty calories’] I need to burn my energy a bit faster. I think a little about Mark. I am not so worried anymore (superficially that is – I worry, deep inside, all the time. [Fantastic! Chronic Stress. The thing that underlies the majority of illnesses and even death.] More so, now) If I rang, what would I say? We must get in contact again before school or things could change (for worse.. ) I should send him the tape of me. Maybe letters are the best. I’m chicken (at the moment) to ring him & he will not willingly ring me. [Good god, I wish I could shake my young self! How useful the book “He’s Just Not That Into You” could have been back then…] I wish I could be sure he felt a lot for me. I hope he does. [10:00]

Saturday 17/7/87A Life in Words

Today I ate and watched TV. Nothing unsusal or exciting. Late this afternoon & right on through till now I have been going through the section on classical mythology in the Pear’s cyclopaedia getting all the ‘gods’. Haven’t finished yet. But today was hot & boring. Julia tried to get me on tape, but I resisted & she got shitty with me. [Sweet little sister; trying to propagate my potential relationship by fulfilling my ‘suitor’s’ wish… and promptly cracking the shits when I fail to comply…] God it’s hot!! Didn’t, obviously go to work today. Gonna listen to the radio again for as long as I wish – I can sleep in – – we hang towels over our louvres so our rooms are dark in the mornings – works well – I woke about 9:15 this morning! Did you know I’m in Greek myth? (Actually, yes: I have related this little tale (although with different details) in a previous post: click here if you’d like to re-visit it.] Elissa (Dido) daughter of a King [of “Tyre”] 2 stories – but in both I commit suicide. Nice, huh? Maybe I should do just that. [Wow, heavy.] I keep wondering about Mark. Want to, but don’t want to ring him. He is so gorgeous. I love him, do I? [???] 10:00

Sunday 18/1/87

I finished “gods” research in classical myth. And read about the Zodiac signs as much as possible. Otherwise for the rest of the day (most of it), I listened to the radio & watched cricket – Australia actually won! Jules & I were freaking every time they got one [a batter, I assume] out! Rang Fi tonight – she can’t do anything tomorrow – going to town with her mum. Also rang Mrs P – she wasn’t certain, but Monique’s coming home on the 25th; she rang me right after! [we definitely shared some freaky incidents, that girl and I…] From Brissy! She’s coming back with Cameron! Believe it or not the one who’s s’posed to hate her. I didn’t ring Mark. I might tomorrow night – saying I’m going crazy with boredom. A Life in WordsTomorrow tho’, we’re going to “book” Jules in .. I think. [And “I think” this referred to her moving to Cairns High. She’d witnessed the changes that the switch to ‘CHS’ had brought me, so followed suit in the hope that her life would change ‘for the better’ too.] Boy it’s hot. Woke early this morning to a downpour. Got a sprinkle this arvy ‘n’ that was it. Crikey gee! Hangin’ out for a letter from MW tomorrow. Hope 10:25