Let's reminisce my friends.
I thank God that we had such a wonderful childhood in such a beautiful country.. Close your eyes... and go back in time...
When milk and newspaper were delivered to your back door. Doctors would be too happy to visit you at home at 2 am, not only that they became personal friends. Petrol cost 4/3d a gallon. The "hot dog stall" near Bogies clock in Gwelo served the best burgers in town.
I'm talking about the time of Drive In cinema's, Hide and Seek in the park or the dark. The garage down the road, the Gremlin, Palace Cinema. Mom dropped you for morning matinee of Tarzan, Batman and Robin and swapping comics too snd the cost was a tickey And Nicks Cafe, Mermaids Pool, Dandy & Beano annuals, French skipping, swimming till your feet went wrinkly, Jumping the river, building a swing from a piece of rope tied to a tree, tennis on the street or picnics in the backyard when Guy Fawks was cool. The smell of suntan lotion, hot tar and Mazoe Orange Juice. Dandy bubble gum for a cent, an ice cream from the Dairy Den on the corner. How about 'Red Rover Crossover' or CARLO and Stingers, open gates and snaky snaky with an old tyre tube and a piece of string. or stingers and catties. WOW
Wait, can you still remember... When around the corner seemed far away and going into town seemed like going somewhere, and your mother made you "dress up" for the trip. A million mozzie bites and peeling skin in Summer, Sticky fingers and sand in and on everything. Wag 'n bikkies, Hitting the Bezant tin & climbing trees. Walking or riding your bike to school & friend's houses - no matter what the weather and playing in puddles Playing in the Makabuzi was such fun, but the 21 Bilharzia injections which followed were no joke. Running till you were out of breath laughing so hard that your stomach hurt. Jumping on the bed... pillow fights, spinning around, getting dizzy.. falling down. Huga bugs and Hoola hoops. Being tired from playing marbs and french cricket...
Remember that A piece of card in the spokes held by a clothes peg transformed any bike into a motorcycle.Three speeds and dynamos just to have lights.
Man o' man what a life
I'm not finished just yet..
Can you still taste and smell... Eating raw jelly or Tree-Top from the packet, Ice lollies and banana splits, Eating Willard's Peanut Butter on the fattest slice of fresh Lobel's bread Fresh cream Doughnuts from Bake 'n Take after church on a Sunday. Boiling tins of Condensed milk to make caramel and coconut ice- took hours! Roast Beef on Sundays and Ox Tail too.
There were two types of takkies - Tommies and North Stars, and the only time you wore them at school, was for "PT". Wearing shoes with the toe caps cut off was accepted by all. Slip slops to wear were just a ball and veld skoens for your best dress. How hard you tried to swop your hostel sandwich for a day Skie's (day scholars) lunch...no luck The skin on the boiled milk at the hostel
It wasn't odd to have two or three "best" friends; Nobody owned a pedigree dog. 25 pence was decent pocket money and Sixpence, would fetch you from school on his bike and you would ride the bar or the carrier, and hang on for dear life through the bush paths home. When you'd reach into a muddy gutter for 5 cents and feel lucky. When nearly everyone's mom was at home when the kids got there.
Remember when... It was magic when dad would "remove" his thumb or make 10 cents appear from behind your ear When it was considered a great privilege and very unusual to be taken out to dinner at a real restaurant or in a proper hotel or even better, Haddon & Sly tea room, or Barbours or Meikles.
Remember when... Any parent could discipline any kid, or feed him or get him to carry groceries and nobody, not even the kid, thought a thing of it. When being sent to the head mistress's or masters office was nothing compared to the fate that awaited at home. Basically, we were in fear for our lives, but it wasn't because of muggings, drugs, gangs, aids etc. Our parents and grandparents were a much bigger threat... and some of us are still afraid of them!!!
Didn't that feel good just to go back and say, Yeah, I remember that !!!!
Remember when... Decisions were made by going "eeny-meeny-miney-mo." Mistakes were corrected by simply exclaiming, "Ninger!" Or revulsion was just 'Siss Man'! or ompie pompie lekker stompie "A race issue" meant arguing about who ran the fastest. Money was handled by whoever was the banker in "Monopoly", The worst thing you could catch from the opposite sex was germs. Having a weapon in school, meant being caught with a 'BIC' pen / paw paw branch pea shooter or an eraser catapulted by a 30cm ruler, or the catapult made from golf ball elastic twisted on your leg to shoot bits of orange peels. Taking drugs meant chewing on 'Cafenol' chewable vitamins or Cod Liver Oil...(yuk).
Remember Colcom Ham, Flings, Corn Curls, Chicken Flings, Willard's Chips, rock-hard marshmallow Easter eggs and best of all... kudu biltong from Uncle Scotty's farm. Coke were considered basic nutritional requirements (and don't forget Tomango Tomato Sauce) and Hubbly Bubbly. Coke top collections got you plastic animals Elephants and sable, baboons and hyenas.
Good times were always had at the following places - any evening of the week... The Blue Gardenia / The Gremlin / The Yellow Orchid / Fritz in Byo / across the Border at Maria's, or Merna Brown's place, or Machipanda, and don't forget the Little Swallow. Hiking in the Chimanimani's the Vumba and Troutbeck or trips to Kariba, Wankie, Lake Kyle or Vic falls, strip roads to Zimbabwe ruins. Game parks were the best ,Wankie, Chirundu, Gona Re zhou,.Matopos, Bumi and all.
And what about an afternoon at the following places... Matopos Hotel /Rhodes grave/ Mazoe Hotel / Mermaids Pool / Aloe Park / Hot Springs / Lake Mac/ Rusape Dam, Pie and Gravy in Meikles, Umtali on a Sat morning with the mates. Mixed grill at Helen's Umtali for 7/6d.
Window shopping at night without fear of being harmed; Skills and courage were discovered because of a "truth or dare" Older siblings were the worst tormentors, but also the fiercest protectors.
Remember when... Jacaranda's, Flame Lilies and Msasas's bloomed Afternoon tropical Thunder storms when it rained cat and dogs, The smell of first rains and the Flying ants that followed by the zillion.
If you can remember most or all of these, then you have LIVED!!!!