Friday, 4 June 2010

Thank You For Being a Friend

When I was at uni in Birmingham, I shared a house with 4 other pals - the pals that I went to Beijing with last October.

In our 2nd year, our house was a dilapidated old terraced house. When you flushed the toilet, water dripped onto the fridge in the pantry below. Our TV aerial wire came in through Pete's open bedroom window, across her room, into the hallway and into the lounge. In the winter she would freeze to death, just so that we could watch 'Neighbours.'

I won the best room in the big raffle when we moved in. It was a big, cold room with a double bed, and it had a great view of people on the top deck of buses that stopped outside my window. I would often wave to them when they stared in at me whilst I was getting ready for a busy day of PE lectures.

The downstairs bathroom wasn't really fit for bathing in, so we turned it into a garage, or 'hoy in room.' Anything that we didn't know what to do with, we hoyed it in the hoy in room. Bikes, rocking chairs, broken tellies, cardboard boxes, beer all got hoyed in.

We were quite embarrassed about our awful house. My dad often laughs about the time he drove 4 hours from home to pay us a surprise visit, and knocked on the sky blue door, expecting me to embrace him warmly and invite him into our lovely home. All he got was a very reluctant 'do you want to come in?'

Our 3rd year house was very palatial in comparison, and having lived and survived the 2nd year together in 968 Pershore Road, we were all extremely good friends. Such good friends, in fact, that we would often borrow each others clothes...well, Niki's clothes actually...when she was away for the weekend and didn't know.

Pete and I had a great time wearing all Niki's outfits when she wasn't there. She shopped at Next and had a wardrobe full of lovely gear. She only found out that we'd been wearing her things when she discovered snotty hankies stuffed up the sleeves of her jumpers - left there carelessly by Pete. On one of the weekends that Niki was away, we stuck new labels in her clothes to hide the Next tags. All her clothes suddenly came from Mark One, Littlewoods or Oxfam. We thought it was hilarious.

So, when Niki came to visit on Wednesday this week, she finally got her own back. Never before have I had anything that she would consider wearing in my wardrobe...until now.

After exchanging hugs and kisses, she didn't wait to be offered a nice cup of tea or a gin and tonic after her long drive. No. She marched straight into our bedroom sniffing out the wigs like the childcatcher in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

'Aha!' she exclaimed excitedly, and picked up the shorty wig which had been dumped on the dressing table. By now, the 6 year old had appeared on the scene. Without hesitating, Niki stuck the wig on and admired herself in the mirror.

'Put it on backwards!' said the 6 year old, 'mum does that sometimes.'

So Niki put it on backwards, and we roared with laughter. She looked just like a Badger's arse. (Not that I've ever really seen one.) She then tried the other wig and rather liked it.
The 6 year old thought it was fabulous that this mad woman had been in the house 2 minutes, and was trying her mums wigs out.

I thought it was great that I have friends who don't feel like they have to nancy dance around delicate subjects like wigs and baaldy heeds. That's the way it should be, and that's why I love her. She represents true friendship.

Another friend, Jill (my best friend from schooldays) came all the way to Brampton on the Lands End to John O'Groats bikeride just to deliver some  knickers for me and Suze. On this long journey, instead of knickers, she managed to organise, from Canada, 3 family meals delivered to my door for the freezer. They were delicious.

Other friends have given me bottles of fizz, flowers, scarves for my baaldy heed, travel magazines, and much to the posties amusement, a sherbet fountain even arrived anonymously in the post yesterday. LUSH!

And finally, by taking the time to read this blog, sending me words of encouragement and thinking about me, I think you are all brilliant. I love you all, and you can come and try the wigs anytime...just don't leave any snotty hankies in them!


  1. Aah yes - didn't take an episode of CSI to suss out who had been borrowing Niki's clothes did it?! Having spent a year freezing in the "aerial room" in Pershore Road I was particularly prone to the "snots!!" Can't believe we were so excited about wearing clothes from Next...better than the stuff from It's A Gift tho or my Victoria Wine Tabard!!

  2. P.S. Doesn't Niki's hair always look like a Badger's Arse anyway? Ha Ha!!It's OK she doesn't know how to use the blog yet....I hope....cos she can be real mean....will be steering clear of any wall's in case she does!!!

  3. Ooh Pete, you're treading on dangerous ground there - I'd definitely watch your back!