Memory:Posted: June 29, 2007
I’m sitting in my Religious Studies class, in year 11. So I must be fifteen, going on sixteen. There’s an “us and them” style arrangement in the class; there are only eight of us, which at least means it’s even. So I sit with Rachel W, who is sweet and funny, and Marie, who is sharp and funny, and Breneve, who is painfully shy, but capable of great conversation. And on the other side of the room are Nancy, and Ndidi, and Billie, and the one whose name I always forget, and we bait them and they bait us….. and the teacher, Miss. Smith, who is delicate and strong and clever and young and wise and stubborn all at the same time, tries to keep us in line. But we all of us adore her, because she listens to us and lets us argue, and somehow we learn the curriculum as well, so when she tells us to please get on with some work and discuss it in ten minutes, we mostly do.
This is the background, by the way.
We talked a lot about ethics in that lesson, too, so we’re used to arguing like crazy, because you have to, but this conversation must have spawned from something about the Church and how marriage may or may not be one of the sacraments (is it? I can’t remember, now.) Oh, and Miss. Smith is engaged, too.
So we begin to discuss marriage like teenage girls. On the other side, there are the comments about wanting a rich, footballer husband, or marrying in order to never work again, and the innevitable questions about what Miss. Smith would be wearing for her wedding day. Cue the arguments about just how big the merringue (sorry, dress) would be if it were their wedding.
Until I chip in with my own take on the matter; that I didn’t think I’d bother to get married, and even if I did, I wouldn’t want to shuffle down any church aisle at all, and least of all wearing something that made me look like a giant cake. Time enough for that when I get old and mad, and start to wear a gran coat and cakes on my head.
This met with a flood of incredulous comments, along the lines of “but that’s what every girl wants…” and so, as Rachel W props her chin in her hand and grins, and as Marie’s shoulders shake with suppressed giggles, and as Breneve looks calmly on at the mayhem unfolding, I suddenly loose part of my grip on my sense, and declare loudly and irritably,
A well thought out argument of mine was never met with such a stunned silence!
If only, if only that wasn’t the reaction of society in general, I wouldn’t mind.
In fact, the only thing that’s stunned people more is learning of my engagement.