{25/02/2012}   Old photos, debauchery, baggy tops and happy memories that I don’t want to relive!

I went through my old photo cupboard at my mum’s yesterday.  These were photos taken way pre-digital cameras, so even the rubbish photos were printed out.  Sometimes, going through old photos makes me feel sad.  Yesterday (and last night, as I brought some home with me in an old case of mine) I found it a thoroughly cathartic exercise.

Of course I looked at my slim self and wished I were slim again, but at least that is do-able to an extent.  I may have been fresh faced and youthful looking but when I look at people that age (these were largely from age 16 to 23) I think how young they are and how much more experience will be embedded in their face in a few years, in a few decades.  There is more to read in people as they get older.  I like this.

My university photos are largely slightly debauched, silly, fun photos taken on disposable or cheap cameras.  But I’m glad my life isn’t like that anymore.  Though of course I look back at those photos with very happy thoughts.

I didn’t like school so I don’t get as smiley faced about those photos, most of which were taken around GCSE and A’ Level time.  Particularly the A’ Level ones, we all looked like we felt really grown up.  Yet we were really only just at the beginning of becoming the adults we are now.

’90s fashion really didn’t do wonders for me.  I over-embraced baggy, even wearing men’s t-shirts and jackets.  Gutted.  The time when I was slim, the fashion was big.  Now I’m bigger, the fashion is slim fit.  It’s all wrong!  Oh, and my hair.  At 18 it was long and highlighted (sort of) and didn’t suit me.  Actually, most hair cuts I had look awful.  I have a sneaking feeling I used to apply lemon juice to my hair (sticky) and leave the sun to do its work.

There are lots of photos where I am clearly trying to be cool.  It’s so uncool to be trying to look cool when you aren’t cool.  To be fair, it wasn’t just me in the photos trying and failing to look and be cool but I’m certainly not going to name and shame anyone!

The photo at the top in Avignon is one of my favourite Inter Railing photos (we don’t have many as our cameras got stolen early on, complete with completed films in my camera bag).  Maybe I knew Ruth was taking the photo but for me then that was a relaxed pose.  We had so many adventures on that trip!  But there’s no way I’d want to do that kind of travelling again.

The other photo is hideous.  It was taken in New Orleans, Mardi Gras 1995.  That was the most debauched I’ve ever been.  I will have been partying for quite some hours (days!) and a lot of beer will have been consumed and those beads were earned!  I still have that hoodie, it’s one of two tops I can’t bring myself to throw out, in part because it’s still too big for me!  That bob did nothing for me.  I don’t like that photo but it illustrates my point about photos of you trying and failing to look cool!  I expect I was drunk and exhausted.  But I had a fantastic time!  Actually, in my defence, looking at what I was wearing, I really don’t know that I was even trying to be cool and that’s probably exactly how I looked at the moment that photo was taken!

This is the first time I’ve looked at those particular photos (ie the ones in that cupboard) and not felt a bit of melancholy for times gone by.  Instead, it’s made me feel good about who I am now and it’s made me want to take more photos of friends and things I do now I’m a proper grown up.  Ish!


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