Diary of Aunty Uta

Peter and I just finished our morning tea. We were  enjoying sitting outside in the warm winter-sun,  watching a wild dove, who  seemed to watch us, while she looked again and again towards a large bush. Was she thinking of building a nest there? We had found birds’ nests in the past in bushes near the front of our house. It was not like this with this bird. She just took off to look around elsewhere.

Our thoughts went to our neighbours, J. and S.,  who had  left  early in the morning to go on a holiday to Queensland. J. sometimes comes to talk to us when we’re sitting outside having our cup of tea. Peter says that J. won’t be around today.

So, why do we suddenly talk about the games we played as children?  I think we were comparing our different attitudes to being left alone. I say I cannot remember ever having been distressed when I was left to do something by myself or to go to sleep. I had my ‘Kinderzimmer’, where I was  often supposed to play on my own. When I was all by myself, I liked to invent people who would talk to me. I totally accepted that not all the time someone could be with me no matter how much I loved to be surrounded by people.

‘Yes’, Peter says,  ‘I played with my toys all by myself too. I can imagine your Mum would have been home with you more often than mine because your Mum did not have to go to work, whereas my Mum always went away, and I hated it, when she went away. I did not want her to go away.’

I say: ‘I don’t think, it bothered me, when Mum had to go somewhere without me. But I sure was  very happy  when I was allowed go on an outing somewhere. And I certainly loved it, when I was allowed  to play  with other children.’

Many children my age and older lived in the neighbourhood  in apartments of five-story high buildings. Our street was very secluded with no traffic to speak of. We would play ball-games in the street. We also played singing games, indeed lots of games with singing or reciting certain verses. It doesn’t take me long, before I start singing  songs and reciting verses that went with our games. I am amazed at myself. that I can still remember the melodies and   the words quite effortlessly! (If someone asked me to recite something like it on a stage, I probably would not remember a word!)

6 thoughts on “Diary of Aunty Uta

  1. This is lovely to imagine, Aunty Uta – playing ball in a good secure street. But being left alone – wow, you didn’t mind? It’s funny how as an adult, we’d be thought crazy if we made up people to talk to, but I can see your imagination was very alive, and kept you company. How funny to imagine that both your husband and you played with your toys alone. Similar as children, and not even knowing it…

    1. Thank you very much for visiting, Noeleen, and commenting. Making up people to talk to, isn’t that what we do when we write fiction? When real people talk to me, or I listen to others talking, certain conversations just stick to my mind and I reflect on them over and over again.
      When I was about five and we were celebrating grandfather’s 70th birthday, there was music and dancing. I happened to be outside in the entrance hall listening to the music and trying out a bit of dancing on my own. Uncle Edmund noticed me. He asked me what dance I was doing. I said: ‘Swing. I’m dancing swing. This is what Mum and Aunty Ilse are always dancing.’ Uncle E was rather amused. His face definitelty showed great amusement! I felt embarrased by his amusement. This is why I never forgot this incident.
      Mum always told me I was not a very good dancer, same as my father. She called it ‘stiff’ dancing. I admired Mum and Aunty for being such good dancers. I longed so much to be able to dance like this!
      I think Uncle repeated the word ‘Swing’ in a mocking way as though it was funny I should be using such an English sounding word for my little dance.

  2. This reminds me that we all seem to remember different things. I think you said your sisters remember not the same things that you remember. Peter remembers a real lot about his childhood but his sisters don’t. I would certainly remember not the same things my brothers remember. My children probably all remember quite different things too. I mean they don’t necessarily all have the same memories. I think it’s great when you are able to write down some of your memories. And so we’re really lucky that we are helped along with this by having the opportunity to do it in the form of blogging. I find blogging is great fun! And to see how so many different people go about blogging all over the world, this is something truly amazing.

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