When I was little I was forever daydreaming. I lived in real life fairytales thinking I could find whole other worlds if I just looked hard enough and walked far enough. I thought it was possible to dig my way to China with a spoon and I used to dig bits of broken clay out of the ground, truly believing that they were all pieces of pots belonging to Romans and Egyptians.
I imagined wildly, I saw dinosaurs walking along the grass across the street, making their way through the trees.
I searched with my friends for real life fairytales. I was lucky I think, to have people that would indulge me in those fantastic ideas. Everybody wanted to join in and have fun, everyone truly believed me could find these magical lands.
I used to play with my parents too. Every time Star Trek came on television I would get on my dad's knee with a quilt and pull it over me so that we made a space ship. It was so fun, Star Trek was my favourite program!
I would sit in the washing basket when my mum did the clothes washing and turn around and around in it or my mum would make dens with me out of the chairs and quilts and then we would get inside. I liked sleeping in there and taking picnics inside.
I've always been a fan of animals too. Ever since I was born there have been animals surrounding me, cats, dogs and rodents. When I was very young my mum used to pretend that I rode her Persian cats around, she would hold me on them (not truly on top of them of course) and walk around. We had a dog called Kim, he would stretch out on the big sofa with me and we would both sleep together with our heads on my Soft Pillow. We would sit together on the kitchen step and I would feed him fox mints, sometimes he ate the wrappers if he got to them.
We had rabbits too, a big white one called Susie and three others, I think one was called Jasper. Susie would sit in my lap and eat her food, she was huge!
When we moved house my parents got me two cats of my own. One of them was stolen and the other I still have with me today, Thomas who is 15 years old. I named him after Thomas O'Malley the Alley cat from Aristocats because I watched it so often as a 5 year old!
The cat above is Drusilla, named after the vampire from Buffy. The name fits her quite well, she's an odd cat! She was born in the wild and you can definitely tell. She has totally conflicting qualities, she will lick you and then bite you in quick succession, she looks tough but her meow is fitting of a baby kitten. I think she is in two minds, cute yet a little dangerous... just like the real Drusilla!
I went exploring, the rain had made all of the plants grow like wildfire and everything had changed and overgrown entirely. My boyfriend and I had to battle our way through a thorny bush to get to a spot we were looking for, unfortunately I was wearing slippery shoes and I fell down a hill. Isn't it part of the fun though? Getting muddy is a fun part of exploring, if you come home with your clothes all muddy you know you really had an adventure!
It always bothers me when I see adverts on TV talking about how 'pesky' it is when children dirty their clothes. The way they handle it it's as though they don't want the children to have fun, as though the appearence of the clothes is so much more important!
Clothes don't matter, it's only material and it can be washed. Sure, clothes get ripped and stained. I say just don't buy expensive clothes! Or have 'playing out' clothes that don't matter so much. I think rolling down hills and slipping in mud and jumping in puddles in infinitely more important than whether my dress is muddy or clean.
When I go exploring in nature I feel like I'm in a place that runs on the line between reality and fantasy. It's as though a pirate could come through the vines or tarzan would swing in, monkeys could be hiding in the trees and fae in the undergrowth. When I visit these places I imagine being Lewis Carroll, I think he must have had a place like this where he went and wrote Alice in Wonderland, I can imagine it! I think he would love the lake near my house, so green and alive and full of so many secret places! Frances Hodgsen Burnett too would have loved it, the lake is like a big secret garden. Bits are so overgrown that you could never find them if you didn't know they existed and I'm sure there are many parts I've never seen.
I miss my childhood, when I'm going through the paces of being a little older I look back and think about the adventures I used to have. I like to remember though that I'm not really a grown up, my heart still races about and gets out of breath, my mind still hangs in the clouds and imagines the kings in the stars.
I think that although my body has grown and my mind has developed the capacity for 'adult thinking', I am still very much a child for the most part, still wondering, still pondering, always looking for something more.