Saturday, 4 April 2009

Right Then, Right Now

Memory's a funny old blighter. It can creep up on you unexpectedly and completely take over, prompted by the smallest of combinations. I was walking along the street yesterday* when I hear a snippet of a song combined with the sunshine streaming down upon and suddenly I'm transported back five years ago.

I'm sat in field along with many, many, many other people. Not too far away, a massive stage has a suddenly very small looking band giving it their all. The ground was a muddy lake not too long ago but, thanks to the addition of many tons of straw and a couple of days of sunshine, it has dried enough to be able to sit on. I'm wearing a T-shirt and shorts. Perched atop my baldy bonce is a traditional festival-style straw hat. My feet are clad in a pair of Caterpillar boots wrapped round with black bin bags as I wasn't prepared enough to bring wellies to cope with the many muddy quagmire that still litter the site. My right foot hurts a little as i stepped on a thorn two days ago and have been unable to remove it (it's protected by a plaster for now - the thorn will be successfully removed in another day and, by some miracle, there is absolutely no infection despite the fact that it's been kept in conditions ripe for trenchfoot). My clothes are gently encrusted in drying mud as there's no avoiding it so it's not worth getting precious about.

I can feel the sun on my face, gently warming it as I tilt my head towards it and push my hat back on my head. I can smell the mixture of hay and mud baking gently in the sun combined with various foods and drinks.

Five years in the future, I smile at this sudden vivid attack of the past on my present. The woman next to me at the bus stop gives me a funny look. But it doesn't matter because I'm long ago and far away...



* Not an unusual occurrence in itself, I tend to walk along streets to get me from one destination to another - I'm a bluff old traditionalist like that.


9 comments:

Anna Russell said...

It's funny the things that can trigger off such vivid memories. At least you only smiled and didn't start replaying actual conversations you had out loud.

That Baldy Fella said...

No, I only have imaginary conversations out loud with the imaginary Lex Luthor that lives in my head (he and Hattori Hanzo are pen pals)

Irish Gumbo said...

No worries, mate. that sort of thing happens to me all t---....

Sorry, I was going to s---....

Dammit, there I again, popping off to the Renaisance and then back to freshman year in college. Sigh.

Anyway, perfectly natural, don't worry about it. :)

Vic said...

Music, and smells. In combination, it's instant time travel!

I like it, unless the place I go in my head is a bad memory.
Do you think that's what it's like to be old and living in your memories? Like you're really there?

Amy@Bitchin'WivesClub said...

I love it when I am transported to a memory like that. Great imagery.... I could feel the sunshine and muck and was sent back 17 years to a concert I saw in college.

I found you at Pearl's site and came on over. Congrats on the award. ;-)

I am actually sitting at O'Hare and flying to London in a couple hours. :)

Frogs in my formula said...

I've sat in many fields and it's high time I do again instead on my couch. Sigh. College...

Sweet Cheeks said...

Hi Baldy!

I saw Pearl gave you an award...and I wanted to stop by and see you. Smells are the number one thing that trigger a memory for me. And a good song...I instantly remember my life at the time the song was popular...Back when we listened to the radio and I bought records made of vinyl...now you know how old I am...
Congrats on your award!
Hope you don't mind if I visit ya!
:)

SweetPeaSurry said...

That is a very cool story. I love it when things like that happen. One day I hope that something triggers in my memory the name of a song that we used to listen to over and over as teenagers while driving around the city causing general havoc. Of course this all happened before I learned how to fix all my run on sentences. Memory is there, the fixing of the run-on sentences seems to have left me.

That Baldy Fella said...

IG - Welcome back to the land of the blogging, squire! Of course, if time is an illusion (and lunchtime doubly so) then you never actually went away...

Vic - It could be. I'm now convinced that I'm suffering early onset demetia. And I'm also convinced that I'm suffering early onset dementia. Plus I think I might be suffering early onset dementia. (I can do this all day.)

Amy - Thanks! Yeah, it was like I was right back, waiting for everything in my tent to dry out from the first night's monsoon...
Welcome to london! (By the time you read this, you'll be here...)

Frogs In My Formula - Oh, don't knock the coach sitting. I'm just as fond of that...

Sweet Cheeks - Welcome aboard! (And age ain't nuthin' but a number.) Must thank Pearl again for sending all you lovely people in my direction.

SweetPeaSurry - You can't beat an overly long run-on sentence especially when it comes to conveying overly long statements which you could shorten if you had the time but would probably lose their charm if you took the time to do so. Or something.