Janey's Blogs - July 2008
Tuesday the 1st of July 2008
7 inches from the midday sun
I am so very hot and sticky but, of course, I am in Lanzarote. I never knew heat like this. It is relentless and burning every pore in my body. Thank God for the beautiful cool blue swimming pools here in our hotel. I simply wake up, pull on a cozzie, walk down for a chilled orange juice and then fall into the still flat cool pool. Now that’s life!
Floating about… enjoying the peacefulness as there are hardly any guests here, let alone screaming babies or drunks who do pyramids in the pool. Just pure serenity and I love it. Though I have to admit, I am bored. Husband did warn me of this syndrome. Apparently I yearn for peace and quiet and then make enough noise within that space because I am easily bored.
Though Ashley and I have had such a laugh together; she really makes me giggle. We have dinner at night then stretch out on our balcony and chat along to our music till the sun goes down over the ocean. It would be nice if she had a chat with someone under the age of 35, as everyone at this hotel is pretty middle-aged. She still hasn’t quite gotten over missing Jay-Z at Glastonbury. She will never get over that and it’s my entire fault.
We have some colour, both of us have read three books and both of us have walked some miles in the heat and came to this conclusion.
Sticky limbs with sun cream
Bars that smell of burgers and bingo
Insects that chase us
Shops that sell cats' faces cut out of coconut
The fact that no one sells ceramic donkeys and that’s the one thing Ashley can ask for clearly in Spanish. (Don’t ask me why)
Sand that blows in your face.
So, soon we will be home from our lazy hazy holiday and I am missing husband. He is probably having a great time away from me!
Friday the 4th of July 2008
Am Back from Lanzarote
I am home and safe. Ashley is slightly burnt, my poor wee girl! She managed on the first day of the holiday to fall over, tits over hair and skint her two knees, then she got her shoulders burnt despite wearing factor 50 and then she had a migraine. It was fun though. We spent hours sitting on that amazing balcony watching the sun go down over the beautiful pools, laughing, listening to music and chatting. Wonderful stuff.
We had such a good time, we have great photos to upload and will do so soon.
It's great being back home; I did miss husband. Lanzarote was so lovely and nothing like what I expected at all. Playa Blanca was really peaceful and nice. The weather was really hot though and, being Scottish, I melted a wee bit.
Saturday the 5th of July 2008
In My Mind…
Sometimes when I lie in bed at night my mind flickers back to old memories and I replay them like worn-out, over-edited home movies. In my brain I think there is a big Rolodex that I click through and occasionally stop and stare at an image, depending on my mood, I may look further, or just click on.
Last night my memory home movie of choice was Ashley as a baby. I could see her wee chubby fists trying hard to pull herself up onto a chair in the bar. She could barely get her legs up; I ran over and lifted her up quickly before she fell over. My cousin Sammy was looking after her at the time: “Janey, leave her - she needs to learn to climb up things.” I knew he had a close eye on her but I recall that deep tugging feeling in my soul each time she looked dangerously close to falling. I had to run to catch her.
Then my brain switched images and I saw Old George my barman carrying cases up from the cellar. He was a retired bar manager, but came out of his retirement to work for us. I giggled every time George came up from the door trap as he always managed to scrape his baldy head on the underside of the cellar ceiling. He had a permanent red angry mark on his head for years.
In my mind's eye view-finder I looked around and could see all my regular customers, I can hear the noise of glasses clinking, the jukebox banging out U2, the cigarette smoke is making wispy garish shapes against the daylight that flooded through the big front bar window. People laughing, talking, singing…the constant background noise of my life for many years, whispered threats, dirty sex talk, angry words about the government, religious quotes, drunken slurred slander and some old woman singing sad country and western songs to a crumpled photo she kept pulling out of her purse. I can still see the sad fat tears dripping down her heavy mascara-ed eyes. I often wondered who she was crying over but never bothered to ask.
My brain flickers over earlier memories, husband and I trying to heat up mince and peas out of a can and onto a cracked plate in the big smelly microwave oven that sat behind the bar. I had never seen a microwave oven before and was fascinated by the sputtering and crackling of the fat in the food in the strange space-age machine. I recall the over-processed taste of the rubbery food and husband and I tried to force it down our hungry throats.
We gave up; I walked through the driving horizontal slashing rain and got some greasy fish and chips from the Italian chippy near the Bingo at Bridgeton Cross. We ate it in companionable silence. Licking fingers and gulping on hot fleshy fish, savouring every mouthful whilst keeping a sharp eye on the drunken old man who wobbled scarily near the juke box.
Hall and Oates constantly under threat of having a deep scratch on its black vinyl, then finally acquiring a strange hicky stutter like all the other records that garnered speech impediments due to the clattering drunks in our bar. Why did the pissed old men always fall on the juke box and never the pool table?
So many memories, all on a loop, playing constantly in my head, some great and some sad, yet all tucked safely away in my head for future showing.
I wonder what I will watch tonight.
Monday the 7th of July 2008
Bella the Dancer….
The year was 1981. It was a sunny bright day and Lady Diana Spencer was marrying Prince Charles. My wee dirty old pub was pretty empty as there were not that many Royalists in the Calton in Glasgow but I had the telly switched on and watched the news coverage of the Royal Wedding.
I am a sucker for a fairytale, whereas my smatterings of wee drunk smelly men were invariably unimpressed: “Turn that shite off!” Archie the old safe blower shouted. He had one of those old wrinkled faces that seemed to be permanently chewing something. His skin was the colour of a tea-stained chamois leather cloth; the malleable softness of his saggy face morphed into a host of shapes as his gums rotated constantly. Yet his startlingly blue eyes sparkled with fun when he chatted to you.
Every story started out a dull pedestrian anecdote about one night when he had just finished work on the boats and somehow ended up with him having hard core sex - the man was deeply odd, filthy and funny. According to him, he had shagged more people than Frank Sinatra; he reckoned it was the blue eyes that did it. I avoided him at all costs.
I stood at the other end of the bar where Tony, the dancing alcoholic, was throwing himself about, Gene Kelly style. He was about 80 years old and I often worried he would drop down dead.
The day wore on. The customers came and went.
The wedding on the telly was reaching its big crescendo – Lady Diana was at St Pauls Cathedral. I squinted through the streaming sunlight that shafted through the open door and tried to see the much-talked-about wedding dress.
At that moment Bella came in.
She was wearing a bright red Spanish off-the-shoulder dress; it was layered with black taffeta and swung like a wonky lampshade as she moved. She had donned a pair of white plastic sling-back shoes and a really inappropriately-placed fake rose stuck between her low slung floppy breasts. I stifled a sigh.
“Hello boys, Bella is here, who wants a dance?” she clattered and skittered over the dirty lino towards Tony.
Her hair was dyed the same shade of jet black that people usually reserve for painting taxi cabs and it was piled randomly on top of her head. A silver shell-like hair comb was stabbed into the crown of the loose bun.
Bella was about 70 years old.
“Janey, I will have a wee or big-wee glass of beer, but just charge me for the wee bit of it,” Bella purred. This was her usual request.
The first time I had met her I was totally confused between the ‘Big-Wee’ glass sizes, but I soon worked it out. You gave her a half pint of beer as that’s all she could afford.
I loved Bella; she made me smile and her bizarre collection of outfits really brightened the place up. I recalled how she dressed up as a Hawaiian dancer, straw skirt and garland of flowers over a pink stretchy bikini top, scary and funny especially as it was December and the snow was knee-deep that day. I slipped her a shot of whisky
“To celebrate the Royal Wedding," I smiled, "it's free.”
Bella downed the whisky, slammed the glass down and then whispered: “Fuck the Queen, but thanks for the drink.”
Her scarlet lips parted and she stuck out her tongue through tainted misshapen teeth that were the colour of fresh butter.
I laughed out loud. Bella click-clacked on her cheap heels and dropped a coin into the jukebox.
Seconds later, Dean Martin started crooning out through the speakers. Prince Charles was staring solemnly at his bride and Lady Diana was being coy through a bridal veil.
Dean belted out ‘That’s Amore!’
Tony the dancer clutched Bella by the waist and they were off. His shaking, veined hands gripped her tightly.
Archie ignored them and chewed his face off in silence. He dismissed the dancers with a wave of one hand over his shoulder and stared into the distance.
Within minutes, Bella managed to get away from Tony; he was good for about a minute of dancing then it usually and quickly descended into a groping sexual assault.
Bella knew the routine, prised herself out of Tony’s hands and threw herself into the bar seat. All flushed, her hair falling down out of the multitude of hair grips that failed to keep it in place.
Tony carried on dancing without her; he shuffled about and sang loudly. The men in my bar may have been really old, but they were constantly on heat!
Bella went into her usual routine of asking me probing questions and quickly providing the answers herself: “Are you happy Janey?” then. before I could speak, she said: “Course your not fucking happy, you are still here in this shit hole of a bar. Do you regret getting married so young? Yes, I bet you do of course you do. Men are all fucked and use you up till you don’t know your arse from your elbow.”
Then she leaned over and gripped my hand: “Run away, Janey, while you are young - Go, darling, just fucking run away and don’t look back. Did I tell you my man was an evil bastard and ran away when I was pregnant?”
“Your man was a violent bastard," Archie hissed between chews. "You were well rid of him Bella. He broke your two legs with a cricket bat,” Then he added: “Who plays cricket in Glasgow? He must have been a poof as well.”
“I loved him!” Bella screamed. She pointed a blood-red fingernail at her crepe-skinned chest: “He was MY LIFE!” She ran towards Archie and spat her words at his face: “He never hurt me in his life! He was a gentleman!”
Archie raised his wiry eyebrows at me, mouthed and mimed with a shaky fist: “He punched the baby out of her.”
Bella screamed again and pulled at Archie’s old shirt. He let her inflict the pain on him. Archie had been through this drama before with Bella.
Then she burst into tears.
This was what always happened with Bella. Dancing, laughing and then the floods of tears over the bastard husband. I felt so sad for her.
Meanwhile, back in St Pauls Cathedral, Prince Charles never cracked a smile. He spoke his vows with pure conviction as Bella, Archie, Tony and I sat in silence. We watched as the blonde Diana whispered her vows. She looked flustered.
Then, suddenly, the peace was broken as Bella screamed: “Fuck men! All of them!” and threw a half pint glass at the wee television that was hung from the ceiling in the corner of the bar.
I screamed in fright. I didn’t expect Bella to throw the glass, the noise was deafening as it smashed to pieces on the tiled floor beneath the telly. The TV flickered but continued to screen the Royal couple, though the volume was now gone.
Archie shouted, “Fucksake, Bella! Calm down, hen,” then went back to chewing his gums.
Tony carried on dancing to a long-gone tune that was playing in his head.
I rushed round the bar with a brush and pan and tried to clear up the mess.
Bella continued to scream and cry. She was pulling out all her hair grips, she was ripping at her dress and she was going absolutely mental.
“Janey, can I get a pint of lager, hen?” Archie shouted over the din.
I ignored Archie and tried to console Bella. “Come on, Bella, don’t get yourself so upset” I hugged her and stroked her warm shoulder.
She sniffed on a tissue I gave her; she looked at me with dark heavily made-up eyes and spoke in a hushed voice: “Can I have a wee-big beer?” I nodded and went round the bar to pour her beer.
Bella eventually settled down, climbed on a stool and supped on her drink, Archie lit a roll up cigarette and Tony finally fell asleep on the couch near the door.
We all watched the Royal Wedding on the telly which was now without sound, the rich and famous mouthing words, heaving crowds waving Union flags and opera singer Kiri Te Kiwana belting out a silent song during the wedding service. I laughed as Bella opened her scarlet lips to imitate the singer’s mouth but was uttering no noise, Archie chewed and Tony snored.
My husband came in and stared at the scene, pointed at the television: “Why are you watching it with the volume down?”
“It’s not down, it’s broke," Bella said loudly to my young husband. "I smashed a glass at the telly coz all men are bastards and I hate weddings and I think I have fucked the volume.” She shrugged and went straight back to her beer.
Husband replied: “OK, I am going upstairs, I will see you later.”
Bella, Archie and I looked back at the telly and tried to guess what was happening without the commentary as the camera panned the cathedral and its royal guests.
Bella was found dead in a hostel a week later. Apparently she dressed up as sailor-girl and was found clutching a photo of her bastard husband after taking a fatal dose of pain killers.
Archie and I cried when we spoke about her.
Friday the 11th of July 2008
A Strange Confession to Make
I saw a programme today about a young woman who pulls out her hair bit by bit; it is a form of self harm and she has permanently damaged her scalp. It made me shudder to watch because I was a hair-puller as a child. I used to lie in bed, pick out a section of my hair, tie it in a knot at the end and tug it till it came straight out of my scalp. The flesh on my head would bleed and I would then throw the clumps of hair under the bed. One day my mammy found loads of the hair and, on closer inspection, noticed that I had a bald patch on the side of my skull. She couldn’t figure out why I would do such a thing. I never explained it to her properly.
I was sexually abused as a child and somehow discovered hair-pulling as a way to divert the pain by ripping out my hair. I did eventually explain to my mum about the abuse, though somehow she chose to ignore my words and therefore allowed her brother to continue to sexually abuse me. My hair-pulling got worse. I don’t know when I stopped doing it.
To this day, I still tug at my hair. I twist it and sometimes chew the ends and, on occasion, I do pull wee bits out. The strange pain it evokes makes me feel odd and I know that it is wrong and damaging to my scalp, but somewhere deep inside it reminds me of my childhood pain, yet I continue.
Everyone thinks I am terribly strong and brave because I survived the abuse, because I do comedy about my past and because I wrote a book about my difficult life but, underneath it all, I am still a child who tugs her hair out sometimes.
I know I will never reach the point where I actually rip chunks out, but I do still fiddle with my hair too much. I need to address this and stop it.
My daughter Ashley took a photo of me from the side on; in that picture I was chewing my hair. I looked at it and felt terrible shame and horror at what I do.
So today I am resolved to stopping it all. Maybe by admitting it I am addressing it will help me do this.
Tuesday the 15th of July 2008
Art? I don’t think so
I went to a small experimental theatre show in Los Angeles many years ago where young students were putting on their ‘work’. There comes a point in everyone’s life where they sit in a studio, theatre or gallery and stare at something that the middle class cognoscenti deem art and you recognise it as mental illness.
I recall watching an anorexic French girl with a geometrical blunt haircut throw broken plates at an empty box as she recited the bible. She was a mix between my mammy in an alcoholic induced rant and Joan of Arc in her ‘black period’. People cheered when she fled the room threatening to kill herself in broken English. I was seriously worried about her well-being, I never mistook her emotional breakdown for art. Other people did. I saw her in the car park cutting herself with her broken pottery and I didn’t know if I should intervene or give the display an appraisal. I wrestled her to the ground to get the sharp object out of her hand. Turns out that was part of the show and people who had also followed her out shouted at me to stop ruining the finale.
The second act that day was watching what I can only describe as a homeless man eat sticky buns as he stood silently in his dirty coat that occasionally flashed open to reveal a very impressive erection. He was cheered on endlessly; people were very amazed at his avant garde display. I managed a smile and I was quite taken by his show. Who can eat that many buns and maintain sexual tension? That turned out to be an actual homeless man who simply walked in and ate the buffet. I was then angry, because I enjoyed the show and I was duped and now there were no buns at the break.
Last week, at a private comedy event, I watched a young, very posh middle class guy attempt stand up comedy. His friends at the side of the room had assured him he was very funny and he should get up at this event and do the show. It was a horrible slow car crash of a comedy death, my kidneys hurt for him and I watched all his young mates applaud him as he spoke clunky clumsy words that baffled everyone. No one in the main audience laughed; in fact, they stared in silence as he carried on talking about badgers and jam at length. “Is it just me or does everyone imagine that badgers are addicted to cheese?”
“Yes, it is JUST YOU!” I wanted to scream. "No-one thinks that and - by the way, mate - that isn’t even funny!"
He carried on ranting and came off to the sound of his own feet.
It was all very bizarre and smacked of too many nights watching The Mighty Boosh (a successful surreal comedy duo). When he reached the side of the stage, I rushed to offer him reassurance and kind words, but he ran like a king to his friends who all hand-slapped and high-fived him. The audience were stunned and took some cajoling back into a decent funny vibe. He was crap at comedy, but in his mind he was amazing. The lack of laughter did nothing to convince him otherwise. He would go off later to the local bar with his wee middle class mates and regale them with stories about his successful comedy debut.
What I am saying is that I am not sure if I can now tell the difference between art and complete baloney….and is there one?
Comedy is defined by being funny. It is something that makes people laugh. I know this because I am a comedian.
I will never understand conceptual art, experimental theatre or even Picasso in his strange plate painting period. Squinty faces splattered on red odd shaped plates made me think of special people who get to do ceramic painting with their mouth as their limbs were missing.
I may be a total philistine but at least I know shit when I see it.
Thursday the 17th of July 2008
I’m a comedian; get me out of here
Writing a weekly column for a famous Scottish newspaper has its ups and downs. My column gets printed on a Monday and the deadline is Friday afternoon. I love to see my photo and all my words printed in The Scotsman and the novelty of reading it aloud in the living room is slowly wearing thin on my family, but I am still chuffed.
The downside is this - Each Monday, after the column is printed, I have the shocking fear and slow drip-drip of anxiety that I have to do it all again for next week.
What the hell will I write about? Does anyone really want to know about my lack of organising skills? Shall I talk about Ashley’s lack of love life? Will she hate me? Do the readers despise me and rip up my column so they can wipe their ass on it? Do other journalists hate me and mock my words?
You see I am a stand up comic by trade (if that is an actual trade?) and I work live in front of people who show their immediate distaste or appraisal in the moment in front me….waiting to be judged over the week makes me feel itchy under my skin.
I do get comments from people on the Scotsman website and they veer from ‘We hate this woman’ to ‘Janey is right about this topic’ and once my column was even quoted on the US Fox News website, so it’s not all good or bad.
I just worry, I suppose. The other downside is that my blog has been suffering slightly as I don’t always get to write my most inner thoughts as I have been either busy on the column or have diverted the subject to the newspaper and it didn’t quite make it to the blog.
So there we have it. Today was even busier, as I freelance write for other publications and had to write 800 words to deadline and finish my Scotsman column and write this blog and finish off admin for the Fringe.
I am a comedian. When did life get so bloody busy? I haven’t brushed my teeth and it’s nearly 2pm. I am off to Cardiff tomorrow to do comedy, so it's back on the old flight-taxi-hotel trip again. Another anonymous city, with yet another strange bed and nightmares in another dark room, yet I do love my job.
Like the old hooker once said, “It’s not the job that kills me, it’s the stairs.”
How right she was.
Saturday the 19th of July 2008
Things can go wrong and my mammy is a seagull
Friday morning was hell. I woke up to get ready for a photo shoot in Glasgow’s East End (Shettleston actually, my home town) as I had written an article for the Sunday Herald on the forthcoming by-election in Glasgow East. Whilst washing my hair, I heard Ashley being very sick. I hate it when my child is sick; even though she is 22 years old, it strikes fear and pain in me to see her unwell.
Ashley finally feels better and I somehow start vomiting instead. Now this is too busy a day for me to be throwing up, I have to do a photo session then get on an aeroplane to Cardiff, so I get stressed more and puke up more.
Husband holds my hair back as I throw up more bile into the loo. The make-up I had carefully applied for the photos was now either being sweated or smeared down my face. That’s when the photographer called me from his car to let me know he was downstairs waiting. We had time issues; I had to get the pics done before 11am so that I could get to the airport for the flight. Consequently I had no time to make myself look presentable.
I managed to pat some foundation powder on my scaly white face and run downstairs. We drove to Shettleston, I felt cold, sick and creeped out by old streets. I saw where my mammy lived, where I went to school and the photographer decided to get me out onto the street for the picture.
“Can you twirl round that lamppost?” he shouted, behind the huge lens of his camera.
“No, I will vomit again. Can we do pictures that don’t involve me swinging, twirling or doing anything that will induce sickness?” I groaned.
I vomited again. The man waited for me to wipe my mouth, I smiled and he clicked on his camera.
I finally got home in time to see Ashley looking better from her puking session (what the hell is wrong with us?) and caught the flight to Cardiff.
The hotel is nice and I checked in with time to get ready for my comedy show at Jongleurs. I stood at the window and stared out. At that precise moment a big white beady eyed gull landed right on my window sill, pecked the window and stared at me.
I flinched. It stared. I poked at the window, it nodded its head. I clapped my hands hoping it would hear me through the glass, it stared more and refused to budge.
“There is a big scary gull staring at me and won't get off my window ledge,” I hissed to husband on the phone. I don’t know why I was whisperings. The gull just stared at me, occasionally cocking its head and pushing one black beady eye further up to the glass.
“Maybe it’s your mum coming back to see you from the dead. You had a worrying day and this is her way of comforting you,” husband said.
“My dead mammy is a fucking seagull in Cardiff?” I screeched at him. “Couldn’t she come back as an eternal butterfly or something beautiful and romantic? Not a big beady eyed gull.”
“Well, people don’t choose what they come back as,” he added. Now he was annoying me. I had banged a shoe at the window to get rid of the gull and that means I have tired to attack my long-dead mum who happens to have become a seagull. My day was already tough enough.
The gull stared at me.
“Are you my dead mammy?” I shouted through the window. The gull stared and bobbed its head. “It’s saying YES” I shouted to husband.
“See, I told you it was your mum!” he laughed.
The gull flew off the ledge and I laughed as well. Just like my mum, it got bored with me talking.
So the Sunday Herald will carry an article and a photo of me tomorrow, good news all round. Am off to stalk the streets of Cardiff to see if I can spot my mammy flying over the rooftops and throw her some bread, she may be hungry.
Tuesday the 22nd of July 2008
Weddings make me think
Ashley and I were watching a wedding in a movie tonight and she asked me about her dad and mine’s wedding preparations. So I told her.
It was the summer of 1980 when we decided to get married. We settled on a date in late September. We had already been living together, I had turned 19 and husband was still 17 when we got the plans together. God, we were so bloody young, what were we thinking? I wasn’t pregnant and we didn’t have to do it, but I thought I loved him enough and basically we wanted to escape our families and make a wee life for us.
I recall cycling on my wee red bike into Glasgow city centre to a wedding dress shop. The first dress I spotted was £58 it was on the sale and it fitted fine, so I bought it within six minutes of being in the place. I didn’t really see wedding dresses as a big thing: to me it was like a work uniform or some sort of attire that was required for the day. I didn’t once consider style, shape or size; I was pleased I got one cheap. I knew husband would be pleased at my penny-pinching methods. He didn’t really approve of spending what you didn’t have and I too didn’t want to go into debt over a bloody dress.
The woman who served me said: “You should look at others, you shouldn’t just pick one this quick -and your mum should see it first as well.”
She was being really pushy and kept nagging at me to consider other dresses and I wanted the one I spotted myself. It was cheap, it was white and it fitted. What more did I need? I was only a teenager with no real fashion insight and I was worried about my bike that was sitting downstairs in the shop front.
I was annoyed at this and said: “My mother is dead,” and I handed her the cash. The woman looked shamed and shut up.
Now my mum wasn’t dead, but I just wanted to buy it and get out of there. I know it was a rash thing to say, but she was pushing me emotionally and I wanted to shock her into shutting up. My opinion was important and I didn’t need my mum to yea or nay the frock, nor did I need that scraggy-faced woman’s opinion - it was my wedding day and my dress.
You should have seen the look of horror on the woman’s face when I tied the big white cardboard box that contained the puffy white dress onto the back of my bike with a big stretchy wire. It was funny looking back, she must have thought I was nuts.
Husband and I decided to get married from our family homes instead of our own flat in the Calton. So he was staying at his dad’s and I was at my mum’s flat in Shettleston.
I kept the dress at a friend's house near my mum's as her house wasn’t really that clean and I was worried it would get smoke-damaged from all her smoking or dirty there.
The night before I got married, I cycled over to my father- in-law's house, my husband to be was out working at the bar and I knew my father-in-law would be alone. I brought the bike into the hallway and he and I sat and watched TV. I needed a bath and my mum’s bath hadn’t worked since 1976 and I didn’t want to be a stinky bride.
After my bath, my father-in-law and I sat and ate ice-cream and I cycled back home where I met up with Maggie. She was my bridesmaid and an old pal of mine. We both stayed at my mum’s that night. Our wedding was at 11am the next morning and we had hairdresser's appointments the next morning. We both got our hair done and simply walked back to my mum’s flat.
It was a hive of activity; my brothers and my niece Debbie were there, all getting ready for my early wedding! People were chatting, drinking beer, all getting excited and kept asking me if I was OK. Maggie and I felt odd being the centre of attention but carried on with our business of getting dressed up for the big day.
I didn’t have make-up or anything else to do, as I didn’t wear make-up back then. There were no big preparations. So I simply got out of my jeans and jumper and pulled on the dress, I thought I looked nice. I popped the diamante tiara on my head, pulled over the veil and that was me done and dusted!
No fuss, no messing or flapping about nervously. I recall walking out of my childhood bedroom dressed up in the big white dress and felt like I was going out for my Halloween party. I spotted my wee red bike and I wished I could just jump on it and cycle away.
The morning passed quickly, the wedding ceremony was over in a flash. We went to his dad’s pub - that’s where we first met. We ate lunch and, by 1pm, we were out of there, I got into my jeans and we left the two dysfunctional mis-matched families to their own devices and went to a bed and breakfast in Saltcoats for our honeymoon.
Husband and I got there early and decided to go see a movie as we had time to kill. We saw ‘Kramer versus Kramer’ - a film about divorce -on our wedding night! We ate chips and headed to the accommodation. It was slightly smelly and really old fashioned.
It was freezing cold and the bed was foamy and hard. A cat meowed loudly at our window all night long and, in the morning, a big Alsatian dog that belonged to the owners bit me as I went for breakfast. Memorable.
So there we have it. A wedding, a cheap dress, a non existent hen party, a horrible honeymoon and nearly 30 years of marriage. Not bad, eh?