Friday, January 11, 2008

Moving Update (1)

I find a woollen poncho in the attic. My mother knitted it for me when I was 16. It's a very thick wool (tog rating 95), sort of turquoise in colour, with a polo neck and tassles round the hem.
When I was 19 I wore it on the London Underground (the District Line from Bayswater to Richmond, since you ask). There were sarcastic wolf whistles and a man shouted "Who's a pretty boy, then?"
If you've ever lived in our mighty megalopolis, you'll know that it takes a lot to provoke that kind of reaction on the tube.

I don't think I've ever worn it since that traumatic summer's night but the poncho has come with me on countless changes of address and it has never 'got the moth'. (What an odd expression that is: as though there were only one moth. It's like people saying to waiters: 'I'll have the chicken", as though only a single fowl were available at each service).

But I've been keeping the poncho for the old people's home where it will serve as both outré day wear for the TV lounge and a warm bed jacket at night. It's long enough to hide a colostomy bag and I can use the tassles to flick flies away when I'm wheeled into the garden.

I shall also flaunt it when I invite young male nurses to my room for a pot of Assam and some fruitcake so I can regale them with entirely fictitious stories of how I worked as a rent boy in California in the 60's.
"That Rock Hudson, more like Soft Hudson, if you get my drift............some more Dundee cake, Kevin? (touching his knee).......I suppose a blanket bath's out of the question?"
If this strategy works, a Social Services committee will find me guilty of 'inappropriate behaviour' and I will be transferred to my own flat in warden-controlled sheltered housing.
Mission accomplished.
The poncho's work will be done.
God Bless you, mother.


At 10:46 AM, Blogger cello said...

It sounds to me more a poncho than a kaftan, Willie. But maybe you'd lend it to me until the nursing home beckons. Turquoise is a favourite colour - I keep searching for genuinely turqoise flowers and they just don't exist - and wide, shapeless garments are my daily wear.

Thinking about it, maybe the reason it never 'got the moth'and the dearth of turquoise flowers are linked. If insects are not attracted to the colour no plant could survive.

At 11:11 AM, Blogger Willie Lupin said...

You're absolutely right. It's a poncho. I've now altered the text. What would I do without you to proof-read?
And it probably isn't turqoise. I'm not good with the names of colours.
I thought the absence of moths was because they had better taste.
Anyway, should we meet, I'll present it you. You might appreciate the wolf whistles more than I did.

At 11:57 AM, Blogger Betty said...

I really like the idea of the poncho/kaftan father and son knitting pattern. You know the kind of thing - the father is pointing to something off camera and the son is holding a jar with a stickleback in it in one hand and a fishing net in the other.

At 12:54 PM, Blogger Willie Lupin said...

My mother knitted it from a pattern but I don't remember what the illustration was. It was more likely to have been Joanna Lumley than a father and son.
If I find the time, I'll post a picture of it so you can all have a good laugh.


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