Thursday, August 28, 2008

RAMSEY AND A FIRST DAY AT SHCOOL TALE.

This isn't graffiti. It's a mural by the kids of the now defunct Albert Road Junior and Infants School. The kids are moving to a new shiny building. I'll have to photograph the old soon. This is right along Parliament Street. Maybe we have some budding artists in Ramsey? What you can see? Three iconic images of Ramsey.

On the left is Albert Tower. The centre image is Queens Pier. The right image is a tram. Show anyone on the island this and they would instantly say Ramsey. I've shown you the pier already. The trams have only just come back to town, and the Tower I will do when I can hike up there. Again the blue hoarding surrounds an empty shop that has been demolished. What will be there next who knows. I kept simple shot as you see, shadow and all.

This leads me on though to a question posted by DAVID MCMAHON, AUTHORBLOG . Can you remember your first day at school.? Oh yes I can.! A detour today into the childlike world of days before I became er, me.

Nervous a kitten clinging to my mother. Remembering the nice blonde kindly lady teacher gently but frimly coaxing me from my mother into the classroom and ushering mother out the door. Coat pegs. We all had a big black coat peg where my coat with my name written inside would be hung. Tiny chairs and tables. Being so proud I could write my name in thick black pencil and nervously holding it aloft for approval. Wondering why so many did not know how to write their own name. Frowning! Recognising Peter and Jane in the books of the same name. Smiling. Oh yes I liked this school thing.

Running round and round the playground. Eating strange bland food. Yuck! Two lots of food. pudding at lunchtime? No I don't like this school food thing. The sand pit. Oh how I loved the sandpit. Not the dolls house, the bikes,the numerous other wonderment of assorted educational toys, no not for me. Making new friends. Bullies! The boy who pushed everyone, who stole the toys. The boys who took my bucket off me. The boy whose legs I threw sand at for taking my bucket. The kindly blonde lady teacher, smelt like sweets. I told her he was naughty, she put him in the corner. I smiled. He was bad. He was punished! The good were rewarded. Oh yes I liked this school thing.

The bell. Big loud pulsating bell. Scrapping chairs. Scrambling for coats. Thanking the sweet smelling teacher with the generous smile. Spotting mom, running, talking, talking, talking. Tired. I can come back. Tomorrow! Oh yes I liked this school thing.

Written staccato like. After all It was long ago. Lengthy memories fade, but snapshots remain. It was heavenly, exciting, scary and fun. It was ordered, uncomplicated. Life is seldom like that now. The good and bad are neither punished or rewarded in equal measure. Life is not black and white now, but a muddy grey. People aren't so kindly, or sweet smelling. Strangers do not become instant friends. I still like a sandpit, it's why I've gone from city to beach. I still metaphorically throw sand at the bullies in life who pinch my proverbial bucket, but instead of a teacher now it's me who fights my battles. Welcome to the unordered, complicated, scary, fun, unfair world of adulthood. No wonder I'm nuts.

29 comments:

Virginia said...

Well said my friend. We all have had most of those memories in one form or another. I for one have not been so good at throwing sand at the bullies, I take it home and worry over it instead. I pray that my students had positive memories of me as you did of your teacher.

brad, boston said...

L.B.

You're breaking my heart. I kept Brad Jnr's school first day name tag. I don't to sentimental, but this got me at nervous kitten.

Kris said...

I hope that they try to preserve the murals. It would be a shame not to.

At the very least, you've recorded them here!

deejay said...

Can I email you?

Childhood is magical it's the getting older that sucks.

Laurie said...

I remember wearing a blue dress with a smocked bodice and little red flowers on the pleated skirt. I didn't want my mother to know I was scared. When I saw children crying as they were told to go inside, I swore right there that I would be tough and not even look back as I walked up the sidewalk and into the large front doors. That was one of the longest walks of my life. Inside, the teacher smelled like tea rose perfume and my desk smelled like pine furniture polish. I felt a little smug that I already knew how to read. I felt scared about growing up.

Thanks for the opportunity to share, Babooshka. I love your narrative.

Louis la Vache said...

Well, Babooshka, as "Louis" always says, one must be a little nuts to keep from going round the bend...

Sakiwi said...

What a lovely story!!

Sherry said...

I remember, I was only 5, but memories are clear enough, My MOther was there with me too for a short time, and left, and it was all a wonder to me. We studied birds in 1st grade, I remember my birds still. School in PA was good, Later my family moved to TX and it was so chaotic I don't know how anyone could learn, and no art, weird!
I have great memories of early years..

Sherry said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lawstude said...

i agree, memories are for keeps. interesting murals. they could tell lots of stories. have a nice day.

Marie Reed said...

I had a shiny metal superman lunchbox! We had to bring our lunch... On my first day I had a tunafish sandwich and a big cupcake... There must have been something else in it but I don't quite remember. I learned on the first day of school to throw away my apple like the other kids...Those poor hoodwinked mums!

MEDITERRANEAN KIWI said...

i love the story - isle of man memory, or elsewhere?

manxbabe said...

Great photo today, shame you didn't photo the other paintings done by the children and show them to people. You could photo the Tower of Refuge from Ramsey until you can get up there for a closer shot.
Loved your school memories and the way you write, beautifully put. I remember the smell of first school, the food, the building, the classroom. We had a sandpit -and playdough, I loved that. You must be younger than me, I was reading Janet and John. My teacher was very tall, thin and bony. She seemed old but I now know that she was only late 30's.

manxbabe said...

See mannananscloak for the other paintings, blog entry for 1 August 2008, he has several photos...

http://www.freewebs.com/mannananscloak/islandlife.htm

babooshka said...

Manxbabe,

Only one a day photos on the daily photo community, so the other shots I have are for another time. Have shown lots with Albert Tower but want a close up to go with a written post the way the readers deserve, my style.

I take ove 200 images a week, so in time everything appears,but you can't please everyone and believe me I have tried more than many other blogs.

I actively promote other sites, already promoted Mannanan's Cloak several times and do myself stop by.

It is me who receives little or no support from the island that I promote and it is getting tiresome.

I appreciate you stopping by now several times and some of the recent kinder comments fron Manx residents. Worldwide support is fantaastic but a bit of howmegrown plain old "well done" and leave it that would be a nice touch.

You wouldn't think a Ramsey Blog could cause such a stir, and it's only supposed to be fun.

Cheers

B

laxeylass said...

Thank you for your blog. I have been there from the start. I just wish it was Laxey beause that's where I'm from. You make me proud luv and want to come home.

manxbabe said...

Wasn't a critism, just an observation, you've used more than one photo in your blog before - bikes, sunrises, swing bridge for example. The kids' paintings are so great, it would be nice to show them all.
I support your blog wholeheartedly, I think its great, I love Ramsey and the Isle of Man, any publicity is all good, you shouldn't be so touchy! Surely you can make room for some suggestions...

Irredento Urbanita said...

In my first school day, I didn't cry loudly, but tow teara feel down my face.

Valery

Barcelona Daily Photo

Lilli & Nevada said...

Great stories, i can remember mine as well.
I love the Murial

mannanan said...

I was terrified but adamant that I wasn't going to show it. What is most vivid is the smell of the floor polish. They do say that smell, out of all the senses is the most evocotive. The sand pit too that springs to mind and the poor boy who was most unfortunate to have an accident his trousers.......I thought the art work on the hoardings fantastic. Something they should encourage. There is a boat load of talent here in Ramsey amongst the younger generation and I take my hat off to them.....There are plans to have a hotel and shops built on this site but I haven't heard any more in quite a while. I did hear though that the chap who was behind it all had asked for planning permission to make the street at the side which goes to the swing bridge pedestrianised and this had been kicked out. Not sure if that's 100% correct but it's what I've heard........Keep on blogging and promoting Ramsey you're doing a brilliant job...

Knoxville Girl said...

Great shot today, and I really like your story. Honestly, I don't remember my very first day of school (kindergarten in Maine was compulsory, I was five and could already read) but I remember really wanting to learn how to tell time. And the name of my school was Coffin Elementary School; maybe that warped my little mind.

babooshka said...

Right Lets get this straight. This is nothing to do with being touchy. This is to do with the systematic written abuse received. Others blogger will tell you of the trouble I have had. I have been sworn at asked to stop the blog, offensive abusive comments and told to leave the island as I am not Manx all in the comments box. This does not include the more vehement emails.Certain days we have themes and events, room for more photos, otherwise it's one a day. I used to be open to suggestion and actually asked for help on many occasions with info that I was unable to find.This just seemed to be an invite to attack me further. I have never seen another Isle of Man blog where people feel free to abuse,suggest,trash,dengerate or otherwise. Having just checked my inbox of 156 emails today 5 have been personally offensive re the post, that I should'nt be posting this photo of Ramsey beacause it shows empty buildings behind the kids work. I have already deleted 3comments with swearing and offensive languauge in asking me to go away in a not so nice way.

So I am. Sorry folks. This blogger is off duty today. I've had enough.

Meead S. said...

Thanks for your wonderful post. We all have similar experience. I remember my mom came with me and stayed for a short time too and left soon. I wasn't so afraid at first because I thought I am enough old not to feel alone without my mom. But after a while, I started missing momy.

Kelly said...

I remember lots of first days of school, right down to the egg salad sandwiches I always asked for and received on the first day! Now I have the opportunity to relive them through my own daughters - even though they all hate egg salad...

Love the color in this shot!

angela said...

My mother would tell you that after my first day at school I cried because I couldn't go back after tea...it didn't happen a second time as we started sums the next day!
I like the way the hoarding's been used to promote the children's art work and the island..

mannanan said...

Can I just say something to those who think it right to slag off this brilliant site....WHY?????The above picture today of the painted hoardings I posted on my site over a month ago and never had any adverse comments. Why should there be anyway. Babooshka is just showing Ramsey warts and all. I'm a 'come-over' as Manx residents call us having lived on the island a very short time, seven years but I love the place.....What's wrong with showing things as they are....Empty shops...we have plenty.....Litter strewn streets.....Just come and walk down my road and in my garden and I'll show you what litter is....Why don't you come and visit my site and post comments on there all are welcome. Just give Babooshka a rest she is doing a great job

Neva said...

Reminds me of the book "Everything I need to know I learned in Kindergarten"!

Webradio said...

What a shadow !

MEDITERRANEAN KIWI said...

i wonder if local people would say the same bad thing about my blog (as they do in your blog), if it were written in greek - it seems that no loclas view it at all, according to my blog stats

greeks generally learn foreign language well, but they dont use it much past school

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