|Jenny Auld - I think - enlarged from a group photo|
Just learned that a retired teacher from my old secondary
me smile to this very day, as it reminds me of my teenage youth
been completed in my town, and there was some low scaffolding
attached to a wall at the side of the opening to the underpass
which led into the new retail centre known as The Plaza.
Me and a friend by the name of 'Adam Cowie' (who
regular readers will know as 'Billy Liar') were swinging like
a couple of monkeys on one of the scaffolding bars one Saturday
afternoon, when who should turn the corner but Jenny Auld her-
self. She looked at us quizzically and then said "Must you?"
in a mildly-reproving (but not totally unfriendly) tone.
My friend and I looked at one another for a second, then
returned our gaze to her. "Yes - we must!" we said in mock-
falsetto voices in unison - then burst out laughing. She raised her
eyebrows as she passed, but I thought I could detect the hint of
an amused smile about her lips. We did wonder if we might
get 'pulled up' at school on Monday, but we weren't.
Even to this day, whenever I hear an exasperated parent
enquire of their unruly offspring "Must you?", I can't suppress
the small voice in my head that automatically responds "Yes - we
must!" Then I smile to myself, and for a moment I'm back in the
early 1970s, when my town was a smaller, younger and better
place than it is now. (Just like me, come to think of it.)
Here's to Jenny - may she rest in peace.