Sweet Sixteen 21/1

At sixteen I was so full of doing my O levels, of getting my exams, that I don’t think I had time to think what I wanted my life to be. On reflection, I wonder if part of that is the consequence of being a navy brat. Of always moving, never being in the same place for too long. whatever?! I still don’t spend much time thinking of the future…

What I do remember about being  16, was the sadness.  It was a year of deaths: a suicide in my year group, of a lad who wore a parker coat ’round school and wasn’t of my crowd. And Nana who was.

Living with us, she was my world, and I missed her tremendously.  I remember her in Ruthin hospital, laying in her bed, still ascerbic. Still concerned that I’d do well. Still my nana.  I remember the funeral. My boyfriend’s dad – the undertaker – getting all concerned because the coffin was as cussed as she, and refused to go into the ground at the end of the service. I remember mum and dad and I laughing uproariously. I remember spending a lot of time talking to her that summer.

I also remember later than year, attending a funeral in the village. This time of someone much younger who died of a heart attack. I remember mum warning me not to be upset if someone walked on Nana’s grave. And I remember some one did, and said sorry. Not to us, but to nana.  I liked that, and took it on board. Keeping the practice to this day, when  visiting churchyards.