I went to an alternative school for the first few years of my education: this basically meant that the children learned what they wanted to learn and, in my case, ensured that at my next school (government operated) I could read at the highest grade level but only if the teacher wrote it on the blackboard in type rather than cursive. And also, I couldn’t do maths at all; a problem I still struggle with. I don’t think they tested for learning disabilities back then but I definitely have immense problems with figures still and I was never offered help to try and understand basic concepts. Thanks, Hippie Commune School.
This school also was about valuing the specialness of the child and imposing very few boundaries.
Which is why, at the age of eight, I decided that an ideal Christmas present for my father was a home made penis sheath.
(Did I mention my parents were nudists? No? Well they were and nudity was common around our house and the social gatherings we attended as a family so I saw a lot of penises)
I don’t think I ever saw them as sexual bits that should be tucked away; more inconvenient male appendages that must suffer from the cold.
So I asked my Dad if he could measure his penis so I could give him a special present.
I swear, this is how it went down.
His reaction was flabbergasted and he immediately sought out my mother to get her to explain why this wasn’t an appropriate gift. She tried and tried to explain why but the early hippy moulding had just made it hard to see defined limits. I remember bursting into tears because I was so proud of my gift choice and nobody else understood how special it would have been.
I hadn’t thought about that memory for years but it arrived this morning. I think my brain is trying to dredge out things, any things, to write about, rather than expend the creative flow into my book.