Thursday, 31 December 2015

My Sad and Lonely 21st Birthday (and other stories)

May 11th 2012

We went to Ealing Broadway where David had an appointment at the bank.  Mum and I just had to stand and keep our lips sealed as he told constant lies about being employed and commuting to and from Grottsville every single day.  They still wouldn't give him a bigger overdraft anyway.

Mum and I walked to H&M where we got some G4 bracelets and a necklace.  I was finally able to snap pictures of a couple of the rides on the way there too.


When we got home, Mum decided to get on with tidying up and accused me of being "lazy by doing desk jobs".  Well, I'm sorry, but I had to catch up with my eBay chores!

In fact, I had so many parcels to pack that I ran out of packaging!  David and I had to go to Greenford to buy brown paper.  It was about 3.30pm by this time and all the kids were coming out of the local school.  I was horrified to see a number of "bronies" (teenage boys) with Rainbow Dash armbands and MLP emblems sewn onto their bags.  After all the hate mail I had received, I was concerned that they might recognise me...  But I suppose the likelihood of those being the hate mailing bronies was quite slim!

Later, we went to Grottsville to collect more eBay stuff.  A peculiar man came to the door while we were there, claiming to want a job replacing our windows.  But David told him that he couldn't make an appointment to give a quote for the job as we were "never there".  Well done, David.  It's always good to advertise an empty property, especially in such a crime-filled area!

I sat outside the storage depot while David went inside for something or other on the way back.  We also got yet more McDonalds fries using the free Monopoly stickers that we'd got on the last lot!

I was feeling really poorly, I kept going dizzy and had what appeared to be allergies of some kind (a burning tongue and various other curious symptoms).  I couldn't be sure how much was physical and how much was pure stress though.  I was horribly stressed and kept grinding my teeth until they really hurt.  I just wanted someone to help me work out what to do with my life but my parents were not the ones to do it and I had nobody else to turn to.

Ebay was causing me a lot of stress too.  I suppose it was only natural that the more I sold, the more problems I would encounter.  Somebody claimed that two of the MLP comics I'd sold were missing pages (even though I was certain that I had checked them all thoroughly).  Strangely enough, she never pursued this, even though I offered her a partial refund if she told me how much she thought was fair...

It was yet another free listing weekend and I wanted to get as much listed as possible.  David was angry with me for this though. I should "forget about free listing until THIS was cleared up", he said (indicating at the stuff I was about to list...)  "Okay, THIS then!" (He pointed at some gifts for Emma's kids...)

I was stressed to death about my future and lack of qualifications as usual.  I felt sad and lonely, but Mum couldn't get this.  "You don't need anybody but yourself, and you don't need qualifications either!  How do other people make careers for themselves with no qualifications?"  I don't know.  Maybe they didn't want to work in musical theatre?  Then again, I couldn't find a lot of available jobs in any industry that didn't require at least basic GCSEs!

May 12th 2012

I was severely disturbed and awoke from the most horrible dream.  David was driving to Brighton for our birthday but I wanted to go to Herne Bay.  He wouldn't listen though so we ended up in Brighton where I crossed the street to some kind of dogs' home.  I was almost scared away by a growling rottweiler at the gate but had to get inside to collect my MP3 player and change out of the ugly, worn out brown t-shirt that I was wearing!  By the time I managed to get back to the car past the rottweiler, Mum had gone to Grottsville and it was midnight so too late to go onto Herne Bay!

Another whole day spent on eBay, both listing and rearranging my sales pictures in Photobucket.  I managed to sell four comics directly to somebody on the MLP Arena too, so it wasn't such a bad day.

I was still waiting for the comic buyer to tell me how much of a refund she wanted at this point.  David yelled at me for not checking the comics better (even though I could swear I had!)...then proceeded to not even look at the magazines that Mum had sold on eBay!

We went to Hoover Tesco and Grottsville that evening.  Then, once David had dropped us back at Woodberry, he returned to Grottsville for the night, concerned that the curious window man might return and break in during the night.  This would no doubt mean that we wouldn't get to a car boot sale in the morning again.

May 13th 2012

We did end up going to a boot sale as it happened, but it was only boring old Hounslow Heath and it was terribly late.  I still managed to get this little beauty for £1 off of the regular toy dealer though.


I already had Autumn in my own collection but knew she was quite a rare pony so I couldn't stand to leave her there.  Perhaps I would finally force myself to start selling MLPs on eBay?

The toy dealer cheerfully told me that she regularly had old (G1) ponies but she sold all of them to a couple at Denham car boot sale every saturday which was why she never had any left over for Hounslow Heath!

Mum wanted to go to Taplow car boot sale in the afternoon but her knee was too bad for her to get upstairs and have a proper wash so David slept the afternoon away instead!

While he was asleep, Mum got increasingly bad tempered and spiteful.

Frustrated with the "holes in the wall", she hung towels in the opening between the extension and kitchen!


She then accused me (again) of causing the pain in her ribs by restraining her from smashing the cabinet a few days previously.  Because of this, she had "written me out of her will"!

I was still trying to research education options on my own.  Mum had mentioned Access Courses as a means of getting into university without traditional GCSEs and A-levels.  But, as soon as I started to look for them, she discouraged me.  I found that there was only one performing arts access course in the whole of London (in Greenwich, I think)...as it turned out, they'd decided not to continue it that year due to lack of interest but, even if they had done, Mum had already put me off due to the "hard journey" and the fact that it "wasn't a real educational course and didn't lead anywhere".

So I started trying to look at academic subjects instead.  But that wasn't right either - I'd "fail any Access Course due to lack of concentration".

We went to McDonalds in the evening for more unhealthy calories.  There were a group of seemingly crazed Native Americans practising some kind of dance in the car park around us.  I decided to try a sundae instead of the usual McFlurry...David was in such a rush to get us home that he ran in without even asking which flavour I wanted.

May 14th 2012

David and I went to Ealing Broadway to buy birthday cards for each other.  How ridiculous when you think about it, to go to a shopping centre together and split up so that you can secretly buy cards for each other!  I got a t-shirt for myself at the same time.

We then went on to Grottsville for another vegetarian cottage pie - probably our last for a while considering we now wouldn't have access to a car.  We went to Hoover Tesco while it was cooking to buy a birthday cake.  I was sad to see the old trolley sheds being pulled down and replaced.  They'd been there as long as I could remember.


There was a nice programme on TV about pathé news with various old clips and "behind the scenes" style information.  Sadly, David rushed us back to Woodberry before the end of it.

I still hadn't got any definite plan of somewhere to go for the annual birthday outing.  Pretty sad to think how I'd always planned to go to Los Angeles for my 18th and Vancouver for my 21st.  I still hadn't been to LA and now wouldn't be in Vancouver either.  The best I could think of was Felixstowe but I didn't even know if it was open for the summer yet or if there were any amusements left there TO open!  I couldn't find anything else to put with it anyway and neither of my parents would even look into it with me.

I knew I wasn't getting any material gifts as usual.  Mum was talking about giving me driving lessons for my birthday though which was probably more constructive in the long run.

May 15th 2012

My 21st birthday.  God, I was old, and what had I achieved with my life so far?

It turned into a real nightmare.  Doesn't every birthday?  I had a bath and tried to wash my hair the night before.  Bad mistake.  I can't have rinsed my hair properly as it dried really greasy.  So I was up until 4am rinsing and re-rinsing to try and get this horrible conditioner out.  It made no difference though - I awoke at 6am and it was still as sticky as anything.

I didn't do quite as badly on the present front as I thought.  I got five cards (including the one David had bought the previous day), a purse and £21 from Mum's Uncle John and a picture frame from Mum's cousin Ruth.  So I did at least get two presents I wasn't expecting to get!

And I gave myself a few gifts too.  I even wrapped them up for myself.  Yes, I know, how sad is that?  But I just didn't want to go through my 21st birthday with nothing.


Mum's knee was too bad to come out with us so I was upset.  Not sure why I missed her company so much though...she was utterly mad.  She got angrier and angrier throughout the day and completely ruined any little bit of fun that I might have had.

We did end up in Felixstowe because I couldn't think of anything better to do.  We stopped at the Tiptree Jam Museum on the way there...which I actually thought was a little mean of David as Mum had wanted to go there for years but, again, we couldn't think of anywhere else to go.  It was a very interesting museum but I couldn't think straight for wondering what Mum was up to at home and crying over my "wasted special birthday".


Mum didn't even know where we were and she was hopping mad that we were out without her.  She rang to say that she'd "thrown the birthday cards in the garden and the cake would be going out there soon as well".  And that was before we even got to Felixstowe!

There was nothing at Felixstowe anyway.  Just as I'd feared, the place was closed up and dead.  Well, it was out of season and the weather was awful with frequent heavy rain showers throughout the day.

I photographed a hand full of rides outside the couple of modern arcades and on the pier but nothing of particular interest.


The only potential old rides (at the seafront Ocean Boulevard funfair which I'd specifically gone to see) were covered over due to the weather.  Typical.


What makes this all the more hilarious is that there was a specific horse ride, Glass Fibre Products' Prince, who I believed was still there and really wanted to photograph/film.  Since I couldn't see him, I decided to pose with what I believed to be his canvas covered self.


I now realise that these rides were common old Falgas Derby horses and Prince was under the furthest cover away in the second photo!  Oh well, none of this matters now as Prince has since been sold on eBay...and I never did get to see my beloved horse ride again.

The rain started coming down heavier again after that so we ran and sheltered in the car.  We saw a bloke who must have worked at Ocean Boulevard and David was going to go and ask him when they would be open...but he got into his van and drove off while we were still sheltering.

I went into one of the arcades and played on the 2p pusher machines, playing 68p and getting 64p back.  Well, not such a bad loss as usual anyway!

The sun came out for long enough for us to have a quick walk along the beach and David took some photos of me.  It seems to have become tradition to have my photo taken in front of the murky British sea every birthday.


I took a couple of pictures of my favourite present to myself, Munchy, as well.  (Yes, I had managed to buy the cheap Munchy on the MLP Arena and received her in time for my birthday!)


Even the ice cream stall was shut.  Mind you, who'd want ice cream in that weather?


I took a couple more hurried shots before David drove away from the seafront.


In fact, he was in such a rush that he drove into a wooden pillar as I was taking the second snap from the car!  Truth be told, I think he was as worried as me about what Mum was doing back at Woodberry...

We stopped off very briefly at Felixstowe's shops.  Well, actually we just went in one shop - a supermarket - where David bought some pick 'n mix for himself.  I'm glad we did though as the shop opened out into Felixstowe Station where I spotted the best ride I'd found all day; a JM Kiddie Rides Massey Fergsuon Tractor!


I remember the good old days with JM Kiddie Rides' machines were all over Felixstowe seafront.  But now this seemed to be the last survivor of those days.  (Well, unless any others were lurking under those covers, of course!)

There were some lovely charity shops in the main shopping street but I never got to see them.  David couldn't wait to get back to the car and start the long and terrifying drive home.  He kept falling asleep all the way and we had to stop on the roadside for over half an hour at one point.  A lovely birthday was had all round really!

When we got back, we discovered David's two cards torn up in the front garden.  Mine were not out there (nor was my cake), but were neatly piled on the stairs out of Mum's sight.  She was pretending to be asleep on the floor but I could see that she had added a little more graffiti to the walls...writing over her original ballpoint pen in thick marker!


David retreated to the loo before going to Grottsville for the night and Mum continued to pretend to be asleep, leaving me all alone for the rest of the evening.  What a horribly sad 21st birthday.

Best wishes,
Desirée xxx

1 comment:

  1. I had my picture sat on that mini wheel thing!

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