So often, I’ve been beggared, challenged and confounded by these beautiful, cannot live without, creatures.
My first awareness of their desires, demands and wily ways came early in life for me. I’ll explain what happened to get my message across correctly and unsmuttily.
I think I was around five or six years old at the time. Mother dear had just conned Dad to take her back in after the police chased her down. She’d been on the run from the police again. Of course, I was not au faux with the situation at the time. I’d been told she had gone to look after Auntie Betty while she was ill. Never had an Auntie Betty before? A few unknown Aunties were visiting me in later years. But none had the attraction of the next Auntie I was to be introduced to, Auntie Kerry!
Mummykins had been back for several weeks. She was on probation). Out of the blue one weekend, I was told that I would have to stay with Auntie Kerry for a few days, and she would collect me in her car and drop me back after a week or so. I just took it that Mummy would have been going to court or prison for this time. All matter of factly, I was used to it by then.
Sure enough, this largish, plumpish ‘Auntie Kerry arrived in the afternoon, a Player’s full Strength in her lips, deep red lipstick, make-up caked on her face, but she did smell nice. She introduced herself and made a bit of fuss over me, asking what foods I like – I’d never been asked that before by anyone! She was not impressed with the clothes Mother handed to her for me to wear but was pleasant enough about it. “We’ll set of early then Francis; I’m going to get him some new clothes from Fords on the way home, my treat!”
This was all baffling to me? What had I done to deserve this? Sure enough, we left and drove into town, parking her Austin A40 in the ice stadium car park, and we walked over to the Fords shop.
I liked how she kept handling me now and then while driving there. As if to put me at ease. (Little did I realise her intentions then, but I soon learnt and appreciated them that night!) She spent a fortune (to me anyway) on clothes and asked me if I liked this or that one before buying – Had I died and gone to heaven?
We took the clothes back to the car, and Auntie Kerry told me it was roast pork, green beans, and baked potatoes for the meal. I was Gobsmacked! Indeed, this put Mothers usual bacon rinds and tinned tomatoes to shame!
We got to her massive gardened house, somewhere (I now know to have been in the Rutland Road area, in West Bridgford) carried the goodies and food into the mansion. Auntie’ said, “Firstly, we’ll give a bath and get you in the new pyjamas” A bath… an indoors bath, with running hot water, no dragging the tin bath indoors, it was warm in there… I think I checked to see that I wasn’t gone to heaven again.
Boy, was I looked after! Bubble bath, proper soap (although I did and still crave the no longer available carbolic soap) and the sole attention of Auntie Kelly, especially in the area below the belly! Of course, I was in my eye-holes. I just knew that I was lapping it up!! I had no idea what was going on. After the extraordinarily long time in the bath, being pampered, massaged and excited, I was taken downstairs and fed like a King!
Blimey! She had a TV too, central heating, curtains, tablecloths instead of the Nottingham Evening Newspaper… luxury this was!
She turned on the TV set and sat me on her knee, well, knee to start with… I lost any interest in watching whatever was on the goggle-box.
“Another bath then?” declared Kerry. Who was I to disagree! Gawd, it was good – I innocently went along with every idea, suggestion or manoeuvrings my mysterious Aunt came up with. Physical jerks of a sort, I still didn’t know what we were doing or why… other than on my behalf, it gave me such great pleasure! And, there was plenty to enjoy.
But, I can assure you that what time we had left together was not wasted. Even in the car driving me home, we pulled up on Meadow Lane, and we re-entangled ourselves, sadly, sickenly for the last time.
No, that’s not true, actually. A couple of years or so later, while Mother was off on the run again, Auntie Kerry turned up at the house many times, and she made sure it was on a Saturday – my bath night, so all was not lost. Just not the same in a tin bath in front of the fire.
I was disgusted (but happily worn-out) four days later, reinvigorated with the kindness and indulgent pampering when she told me I had to return home!
I realise it is now safe to tell this tale, for the mysterious, inestimable, plump, aged Auntie Kerry (whoever she was) will by now be in heaven – awaiting my arrival, I hope!
A heartfelt Thank-You to Auntie Kerry! ♥