Sunday, 7 March 2021

Dozy dreams

 I got my walk with Priscilla in before lunch because my son has promised to come round this afternoon and just give my car carpets a brush with a stiff brush for me - to spruce the inside of my car up before I say goodbye to it for the last time.   Looking at the inside, because I had seat covers on because of dear old Tess, once the floor is swept it looks like a new car.   Someone is really getting a good buy as I expect the garage who have bought it (the one where I boought it new) will sell it with some warranty too.

Walking before lunch meant that I was tired after eating the lunch J brought me (pork chop in honey and mustard sauce, with leeks, onions, new potatoes and carrots) so for the past hour I have relaxed dozing in my armchair.   Dozing - and thinking.   And I got to thinking about things we bought when I was young.  Clothes - do you remember suspender belts girls in pre-tights days?   And roll-ons?   At the slightest sight of a stomach we all wore one and what a bind they were .   Now they let it all hang out.   Once, when I had a bad back, I remember being prescribed at corset.   My back rapidly improved - was it due to the corset?   No fear - I only wore it about twice  - exercise and rest cured it.   And my father's long underpants on the washing line in winter and his vests with sleeves,

And food.   We tended to only eat what was in season.   I don't know whether you could get out of season vegetables - I suppose maybe you could in big cities and posh restaurants but certainly in the Fens of Lincolnshire you mostly had what your Dad could dig up and bring in from the garden.   And how you longed for the first boiling of new potatoes (usually eaten for supper, dug up, put into a bucket, covered with several lots of water stirred round with the copper stick and then gently boiled for ten minutes or so and doused well with butter and salt - and none of that fancy Sea Sea - but plain old salt).  Then it would be the turn of the first green peas, the first tender little broad beans, the dwarf runner beans, the kidney beans - and then the giant marrows which my mother would stuff with a delicious mixture of sausage meat and onion and herb stuffing and roast in the oven in thick rings.   Parsnips would come later.   Carrots my Dad could never grow on our soil and after a few years he gave up trying and grew giant Savoy cabbages instead.

And then I thouht of all the glamorous things my sister used to wear - she married when I was very young but I remember being old enough to pick up and sniff Evening in Paris perfume in its little dark blue glass bottle with its silver label - so exotic.   And her box of Coty face powder with its orange-flowered lid, which she kept on her dressing table.   And her black velvet evening shoes.   Ah memories, memories.

31 comments:

Derek Faulkner said...

Since I turned 70, it's something I do a lot, simply sitting in the conservatory in the afternoon and reminiscing about how things used to be. The times when many foods were seasonal I often think about, it seems a shame now that that joy of eating the first new potatoes or parsnips, etc. has now been lost to having them available all year round.
In respect of clothing, men wearing braces now seems to be a thing of the past, although Monty Don still wears them.

Marcia LaRue said...

All good memories, Pat!

Sandra said...

I think about things like that sometimes. My Mother and Grandmother made our clothes and they were excellent seamstresses. So we had the most beautiful clothes. I remember so many of them. We ate by the seasons too but I think that is coming back. I admit I like that you can get anything in the grocery store now.

Susan said...

Fond memories indicate a life well lived. I see more small growers coming back and their products are outstanding. Clothing and dress has evolved for sure. The biggest change I notice is sadly decline in quality. More synthetic fabrics too. Very cold here but the sun is strong and the sky is blue.

Bovey Belle said...

What lovely memories, especially the "first" fruits and vegetables of the season. Oh, when the first strawberries were available - they were the taste of summer.

I can remember being flat as a washboard and with a tiny 22" waist yet we all wore roll-ons at school and suspender belts, and I can remember moaning about being too thin. Obviously Someone Listened! Like moaning about being flat-chested - oh gosh, the Gods had a laugh with me over THAT one!!

I can remember lots of roadside stalls (with an honesty box, if they were just garden produce) as around Southampton were lots of market gardens which supplied the city. We would often stop when "out for a drive" (which is how Sunday afternoons were spent) and get fresh fruit, veg and eggs.

Someone will be getting a REAL bargain with your car ("just used by an old lady to go to Church, madam . . ."!

Beside a babbling brook... said...

Being 83, I well remember 'garter belts' (for keeping stockings up) and girdles (for flattening stomachs). -smile-

Of course, back then, I had no stomach to flatten! But wore a girdle at times, anyway. LOL How funny.

Cute memories though....

Susan Heather said...

I still eat by the seasons, growing most and getting the rest from Growers' Market.

dixie heath said...

I too think about those times. I am 81 and yes I remember garter belts and such. My dad and grandfather's had gardens and grew almost all kinds of vegies and fruits. My grandmother and mother canned and preserved them and in the winter we had wonderful meals. My grandfather's also had cows and hogs and butchered so we had plenty of meat and it was canned and preserved in jars and crocks because there was no freezers. I loved the homemade sauerkraut and pickled corn and beans and jellies. I would go to my dad's garden and pick fresh tomatoes warmed by the sun. There is nothing better. Yes I also wore suspenders in grade school as I was small and couldn't keep my skirts up...I hated them :) So many memories to remember and such fun we had. It didn't matter if you were from Lincolnshire or Ohio we must have had similar childhoods and great times. Keep well my friend, have been reading your blog for a long time and feel like we are friends. I am dreading the time when I can no longer drive. Stay well and safe.

Bonnie said...

Your mention of the Coty face powder with its orange-flowered lid took me back! My Mother always wore that and one of the Coty perfumes as well. For years after my Mother's death I would go to the store and just smell the Coty face powder. It would immediately take me back to all my memories of my Mother almost as if she was with me. It's amazing how scents can affect us.

I enjoyed hearing about all your wonderful memories!

Sue in Suffolk said...

Some lovely memories there -
I was so glad when tights took the place of stockings - hated them

Rachel Phillips said...

We do not the price tag on the car so it is not right to talk of bargain as one of your commenters has done. It may be a good car but it is only worth as much as it is worth. I remember all the things you mention and many of them are still current.

Ellen D. said...

You have wonderful, happy memories from your youth. I find that during my life there have been times when I was too busy to take the time to reflect back. I am enjoying this time to stay at home and look back on my life and see what I can remember. Some things come back to me so clearly while other times seemed to have gone by in a blur!
Your post sparked some old memories for me! Thanks!

Brenda said...

I remember wearing those items...so tony..no longer...kids today are more into what they are doing than how they look...maybe they are more sure of themselves...my students were...

Heather said...

I remember all those things Pat. My mother used Coty powder and I longed to be old enough to buy Evening in Paris perfume. I also remember the dreaded liberty bodice onto which suspenders were sewn in winter to hold up thick lisle stockings. You could tell who was wearing them by the distinctive shoulder movements to hitch up the stockings as they dragged on the suspenders!
And home grown vegetables - so delicious. It's been a long time since I ate any, but had very few shop bought ones during my childhood. How lucky we were.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Yes I remember roadside stalls in Lincolnshire selling surplus veg at market gardens - I particularly remember a glut of cauliflowers when every market garden had a stall ouside.

Unknown said...

I remember my mom having "Evening in Paris" perfume! Her fancy high heels were dark blue "lacy" ones and she had a dark blue evening dress to match.

Gail, northern California said...

Oh how I love your little slices of life - today and yesteryear. Thank you.

Joanne Noragon said...

My mother had the convenience of a supermarket by the fifties, but most of our produce and fruit came from the garden, and so much of it was preserved for winter.

weavinfool said...

I remember my father wearing garters on his legs to keep his socks up. They fastened around his calves.

Debby said...

My grandmother bought me a tiny bottle of Evening in Paris. How glamorous and grown up my 13 year old self felt when I dabbed it on!

Mary said...

Lovely memories of many items. I admit I do get somewhat sad thinking back and will always say, "we lived in the best of times", even with liberty bodices, elastic legged navy knickers and girdles!!!

MFH said...

Do you have a picture of the Corsa?

it's me said...

Evening in Paris has sweet memories for me too. I remember my dad buying a beautiful vanity set with powder and perfume for my mom. I’ve even considered buying an expensive bottle online just to smell it again.

thelma said...

Getting those dog hairs off sticky mats will be a job, tried yesterday on my car. Selling the car is a sensible move but of course you will have put up with a low price probably.

Librarian said...

Scents can do a lot to trigger memories (good and bad), it's like having our very own in-built time machine.
Until my parents had to give up their allotment two years ago, we often had home-grown fruit and vegetables. And I still don't buy strawberries and asparagus in February - I simply don't feel like eating them until it is really their season.
But I am grateful for having fruit such as bananas available all year round, even though I am aware of their CO2 footprint, being shipped half way around the world before they arrive at my local Aldi.

John "By Stargoose And Hanglands" said...

You can still buy long underpants and long-sleeved vests - but now they call them a "thermal base layer". You used to have to go to specialist outdoor shops to buy them but M&S sell them now. I still smile about my grandmothers enormous bloomers hanging on the washing line!

rosemarie said...

Hello there, I don't comment a lot on blogs, but I really enjoy reading yours and was very sorry when you had your fall. I do hope things are getting better and better for you now, also with the Covid situation. Here in Italy we seem to be going from bad to worse and Piemonte, the region I live in, is threatened with a "red zone" in a week's time. Vaccination is still a hope on the horizon although the over 80's and front line workers have had theirs. One thing I have found during our various lockdowns is that reminiscing has become a huge part of my days. Memories when we thought things weren't going so well (little did we know!) but looking back how good things really were. Memories, ah memories. Have a good week, keep safe and happy "Ladies Day" (today 8th March). Hugs from abroad ~ Ro xx

Tom Stephenson said...

Yes, Weave. I am ashamed to say that I do remember suspender belts. Tights ruined everything for me.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Oh Tom - it's good to have you back!!!
Thanks Rosemarie - good to welcome you.
I remember them too - directoire knickers they were called.
Thelma - I have sold it back to where I bought it from and they have given me a good price
MFH I don't have a picture sadly.

Thanks everyone - you have all contributed to my memories.

Mary said...

Ha! What I remember about suspender (garter) belts is that they forever twisted around so that the straps to the stockings always seemed to end up sideways. Had to periodically find a loo to straighten things back into place. Such a nuisance. :)

A Smaller Life said...

Someone will get a brilliant deal with your car, low mileage and clean interiors. My car looks great too once I peel off all the seat covers and give it a quick wash. Usually though it's nicknamed 'the dog mobile' and is a little dusty fluff ball.