Friday, April 15, 2005

We'll always have Rome

The worst photograph of me in existence is one that was taken of me in 1983, in front of the Trevi fountain in Rome. There’s me, my sister and my mum, all captured in what looks like a group seizure, but what was in fact the act of each throwing a coin in the fountain. My mum assured us this was a guarantee that each of us would one day return to Rome. I’d have been better off if it was a guarantee that at some point in the very near future I’d stop dressing that badly. Admittedly I was only ten years old, but thanks to what we’ll euphemistically refer to as my “chubbiness”, coupled with my truly appalling even by eighties standard dress sense (a rope belt cinched as tightly as possible round a pot belly apparently just makes you look even fatter – who knew?) and a hairstyle that would have Donald Trump gasping with disbelief, I actually look like a little old lady on a coach trip. Nice. The hair was an issue for most of my childhood – it was only when I hit secondary school that I realised that normal pre-pubescent girls don’t have hair that would make Gloria Hunniford’s stylist weep with frustrated envy. Glance through the school photos that include me, and from the age of about seven onwards (prior to this my mother was satisfied with tortuous bunches and ponytails that by the end of the school day left me feeling like I’d spent the day with my head in a vice), I stand out amongst the serried ranks of normal kids like Liberace at an alopecia convention. I can only assume that my mother had at some point been thwarted in her attempt to become an internationally-acclaimed hairstylist to seventies porn actresses, and had instead turned her attention to me. Sunday nights were spent having my ears burned by the scary orange hairdryer in front of Songs of Praise. Monday through to Wednesday mornings were filled with the sound of Silvikrin hairspray sizzling on the curling tongs, as ever-more elaborate arrangements of waves, ringlets and a suburban-Essex take on the Farrah Fawcett Majors flick were forced onto my recalcitrant and resolutely uncooperative hair. And she wonders why I spent 3 years in my early twenties with dreadlocks, and didn’t even own a hairbrush. Ha.

Incidentally, the mere mention of this photo has the power to render the Other Half helpless with laughter (why did I show him?? Why?).

Darling, we’ll always have Rome…….


Blogger Donna chimed in with...

I think you'll find that if you download 'Hello' from blogger, you would be able to treat us all to that picture ..... don't worry - it can't possibly be as bad as the picture you've conjured .... (can it?)

26 April, 2005 15:08  

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