Monday, 7 October 2013

"Me and my cousins...."

Vampire Weekend's Contra; formally the soundtrack to those seemingly endless sessions at the chemo unit, now small son's music of choice when riding shotgun in my car. I love the layered rhythms, he loves to sing along; songs from difficult times transformed into one of those easy connections between the two of us.

He invariably flips through to 'cousins', the chorus of which immediately conjures up images of my grandparents' garden, and an old photo of my siblings, maternal cousins and I lined in height order from eldest to youngest; standing on the low wall around the fishpond.
Clad in sensible brown shoes, wrinkled socks and party dress, my place for now is at the very end of the line; my brother absent, as yet unborn. It is easy to guess who my siblings are...with matching home sewn dresses of rich blue, wide white sashes and different coloured hair ribbons to identify us. My sash as usual is twisted the wrong way, as I stand solid, one sock up, one sock down, squinting into the lens.

This is just one of  many line ups that span across the years; order changing as our ages no longer define how tall we have grown, clothing reflecting the latest trends.
Now when we gather together, it is our sons who form the line ups with us; boys and parents intermingled as they tower above us on their way to adulthood.

I have often wondered how it would be if we were all to come together for the ultimate line up..... Cousins, spouses, offspring in size order as tradition dictates ; a long line spanning generations. We would, of course, have to find a very long wall!

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