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Friday, 10 January 2014
RAINBOW CONNECTIONS - (UPDATED)...
"In the chocolate box of life, the top layer's already gone - and
someone's pinched the orange cream from the bottom." ******
"There goes yesterday." ******
Bob Ferris and Terry Collier, The Likely Lads (1976).
Well, it's finally happened. The demolition team moved in yesterday and started to tear down my barely 50 year old primary school. I reckon it'll only take a few days to complete the task and then yet another part of my past will be gone forever. Regular readers will recall me having alluded to the then-impending prospect a few times over the last couple of years, but now that the day is finally here, I find myself still not quite able to take it in. Perhaps when the football pitches and flats which are earmarked for the site are eventually built, I'll get used to them - but I doubt it. The area as it was is so ingrained in my consciousness that, whenever I go there in future, it'll be akin to visiting an alternate universe where most things are the same, but with glaring differences which are completely disorientating.
A friend who lives next to the school alerted me to proceedings, then came and collected me in his car so that I could record the event. Whilst I was snapping away, a rainbow appeared (see photo), seemingly forming a Bifrost bridge between the old school building and the new one - as if whatever spirits inhabiting the original were now moving to a new abode. I couldn't snap the other half of the rainbow over the new school because the pupils were all observing the demolition from the classroom and hall windows, and, due to the times in which we now live, a stranger pointing a camera in the direction of an occupied school runs a strong risk of being regarded with some suspicion. I therefore contented myself with the object of my attention and affections - which was all I was really interested in anyway. However, the connecting rainbow was a memorable moment - for me at least.
I can remember the day I first started my old school and the day I left as if they were both fairly recent events. Yet somehow, paradoxically, both occasions seem like a hundred years ago at the same time. Time, eh? Just where the hell does it go to when we're not looking? I notice a 'refresh' facility on my computer as I type this - if only our lives were similarly imbued with the same option, wouldn't things be grand?
Talking of rainbows reminds me of a play my class put on back in 1967 or '68. I no longer recall if I was still in Room 7 or the one directly above (or maybe even the one above that - they were identical in every respect), but I still remember one of my lines of dialogue word for word: "Such beautiful singing has touched my heart." The play was PETER PAN and I played the Red Indian Chief (I refuse to pander to the PC brigade and type 'native American') and BILLY MONTGOMERY was CAPTAIN HOOK. Billy sang'Never Smile at a Crocodile' and I always think of him whenever I see the cartoon today. I can't recollect who sang 'Over the Rainbow' (ELIZABETH FLEMING perhaps), but for years afterwards I assumed that the song was from the DISNEY film (which I only watched for the first time back in the late '80s or early '90s), until I saw THE WIZARD OF OZ on TV one Christmas when I was in my late teens or early twenties.
The above pics were taken on Thursday afternoon, but I trotted along to the school today (Saturday) to see how things were going and took some more. I'm sure you're all as desperate to see them as I was to snap them, so without any further ado, here they are.