On this day, some years ago, Boy was born. He did not cry, only looked at the world exactly as though we had woken him up but, never mind, he had been thinking of waking up anyway.
His nose resembled a strawberry and his hair was a chimney brush. He grew into the nose. The hair changed colour and texture but still grew upwards and outwards, thick enough to plait a rope to hold a battleship to a dock. He would keep it short on a regular basis had he not irregular parents who easily forget hair appointments. They like DIY hair, which has resulted in some minor injuries, which has resulted in a boycotting of home salon efforts.
Mother of Boy takes the prize for Most Stupid Coiffeur, Amateur Division, having absentmindedly shaved Boy’s head bald. That day, Boy was about eight years younger, a slender little chap. Mother, Girl and Boy went on a grand day out to Castle Drogo, and everywhere people said ‘Oh, no, after you, please.’ Because they thought Boy might be having chemotherapy. Because I was too embarrassed to confess I had left the guard off the shaver, and what he was actually having was a bad hair day. But it also meant that when he tried the archery and over shot his arrow into the middle of the Medieval Camp (none hurt) no-one dare shout at him. We have volumes of these Family Tales. Treasured, life-defining tomes of ridiculous, endearing eccentricities and accidents; of births, marriages, divorces, friendships, more births and the full summations of character that can only be made after a death. Boy, who has grown up in the midst of these pluses and minuses, understands the sum of the parts being greater than a catalogue of hilarious errors, goes out into the world, wide awake and quietly wary of clippers.
|Hooray for hats!|