The time has arrived to once again take to food writing. It was yesterday when we combined a visit to the Campbeltown quack on the way to grandsonal watching duties in Sydney. Grandson watching used to be combined with cooking a meal at home and taking it in an esky to Sydney and re-heating the lot for the starving grandsons.
Both grandsons now go to high school. The youngest for the first time. Again, memories came flooding back that I thought had gone and deeply buried or al least permanently dormant. It seems, no matter how deep things get buried sooner or later someone will dig it out. Those Dutchmen long gone on those forlorn West Australian Islands murdered and buried hundreds of years ago are being exposed now and will be remembered forever by those that write history.
Can you imagine the horrors of those years?
But a more relevant memory, at least more relevant to this piece is the issue of ‘school uniforms’. How my mother rallied against them. I can still see her in full flight off to school defending her stance on education = allowing, nay encouraging individuality, which was the crux of her argument. All to no avail. She finally had to cave in. The subject was not open for reason or logic. She so gutturally pleaded as a last line of defence, ‘why not have at least all uniforms the same, no matter what school students go to?’ Her Dutch practical mind did not easily give up? She badly underestimated the might of Anglo-Saxon traditions and their much beloved credo; ‘if it isn’t broke don’t change’.
And now, go forward sixty years, I am off to school with grandson Max in tow hoping to at least get a couple of bargains from the second hand uniform shop at school’s office. He needed long pants, grey of course. Shoes,black of course. Blazer ($350.- new) with school motto (of course). This old man has mellowed and I did not argue at all, just smiled but remembered. Forgive me mum, it is all so much water under the bridge now. Some things never change, least of all school uniforms.
Max with school uniform apparel in a black plastic back and I drove home in the Peugeot with foot rest (of course). I then started on a lovely meal of chicken thighs and pan fried potatoes all drizzled with fine olive oil and a can of Italian crushed tomatoes with lots of sage and thyme.
Lovely it was and the boys loved it.