Monday, October 24, 2011


When I was a kid we had a pet Egyptian Goose called Garlic. We'd take him swimming at the Mfuwe Lodge swimming pool. Mfuwe Lodge, in those days, was a study in 70's taste. All unpainted cement, peeling varnished wood and orange and brown cushions. I can still smell it now, twenty five years on, a mix of creosote and wood smoke. 

The pool had big cement benches and tables with wasps underneath that would ambush us kids. And the entrance to the pool had a little thatch roof and underneath a patch of cement with hundreds of bottletops embedded in it. I was eternally fascinated with those bottletops, I'd look at them for hours and marvel at how they managed to get so many of them together to put in the cement...I just couldn't fathom that it was possible. Okay, so I was a simple child!

So we'd take this baby goose to the pool (and also my baby lizard until I lost it) and we'd all swim and play and splash. And sometimes use the icky shiny white plastic lounger mattresses (that smelled vaguely of vomit) as lilos until the grownups told us not to. And waaaay before it was time to go home we'd have to start the charade of trying to catch Garlic. One of us would swim up to him, get really close and just as we'd reach our hand out to pick him up, he'd duck under the water  and pop up at the other end of the pool. So we'd swim to the other end of the pool, reach out to grab him and he'd duck under again and pop up somewhere else. Repeat. For a good half hour I'm sure. 

And so it was this weekend with my two year old on the bouncy castle. We went to have a look at it but there were three boys playing on and she wasn't so keen "Eeee, no mummy, there are boys there." (Long may that last!). Once they'd left she ventured on and tottered about and found her feet and fell over and then really got into the groove. And when it was time to go I'd reach over to pick her up and she'd slip out my grasp and pop up at the other end. And I, all 7 months pregnant and beached whale like couldn't get to her no matter how hard I tried. 


Lori ann said...

haha, 7 months already? eeish time flys. i hope your feeling well and not getting too tired chasing the little one. i remember this game too, now instead of doing it with my children (who are all grown), i play it with my puppy.

Robyn said...

Beautiful story telling.
thank you for sharing :)

Angela said...

I love your stories, Miranda! When is your book coming out? No one has such memories as you.

Angela said...

I love your stories, Miranda! When is your book coming out? No one has such memories as you.

Amanda said...

haha - that story of you staring at the bottletops reminds me of my baby sister who used to stare at the test pattern on bbc!

what great memories, beautifully told - i love the duck's name. can't imagine why you called him that?!