I have as long as I can remember been interested in history: that is stories of the past, how things came to be the way they are today.  Now when I look at the History magazine I find the 1950s, the 1960s and even the 1970s are dissected in its august pages.  How can this be?  This is my life-time, how can my story be part of history?  Am I not living and breathing, not particularly active its true but still part of the big scheme of things.  This morning as I was washing my face an old wrinkled face looked back at me.  When did this happen?  There was a time when my eyes were bright, my teeth were all there, I could hear every sound, not yet sans hair.  I still have a fine thick head of hair, of various shades, yet all my own.

    Now I’m part of the past, a small insignificant part, swept along in the tide of life, here and there wherever the forces took me.  I have some memories of the great cataclysmic event of the twentieth century, the Second World War and of the decade of scarcity which followed.  I was part of the 11+ generation, now that really is a part of the past.  Now in theory the nation wants to give every child a good education, in practice we are still a long way from achieving that laudable aim.  Although it is understood  that the early years of a child’s life are extremely important, the brain is still growing and keen to learn.  The government has in true penny-pinching mode cut back the funds for Sure-Start schemes, so the children who need the most help are now deprived of it.  This dereliction of duty is called austerity, it could simply be called neglect .

    It seems opportunities are relative to the place you are born into, if you are born into a wealthy family your parents will pay a large sum of money to have you educated in a Public School, (which is in fact exclusively private).  Such a child will of course meet all the right people and be assured of an important place in society.  Who cares about children who are deprived through no fault of their own?  Not our government, we’ll push them out of sight!  I have a terrible feeling that we’re moving backwards to the 1930s or even the 1920s.  These were not good times for the majority, people like my parents who worked hard and still struggled to pay for the essentials of life.  It could be different if billionaires didn’t buy yachts and instead paid their taxes like the rest of us.  Poverty is not relative it is an absolute condition.



  1. I agree, and we have so much of value to tell our kids and grandkids, if they had the time to listen. I think the 60’s were such a great decade of rebellion in so many ways – but back came society making the same mistakes as in the past. As workers we kept on fighting the same old battles – now there is so much reform necessary. But i won’t be out there anymore.

  2. Indeed the same mistakes, in the UK we going back a hundred years, to my parents’ time. This was a very hard time. You and I will have to rely on our words to promote action in those with plenty of life ahead of them.

  3. Oh I loved this! I wonder how I came to be so old, feeling all the time like a young woman, daughter laughs at me when I talk about records and tape recorders! To think we were around before computers….the changes are utterly incomprehensible, how the world has changed.xxx

  4. The speed of change is the hardest thing to deal with. If I looked around I know I would see records, CDs, videos, not to mention books. Some changes are definitely a plus, information on just about anything is available to everyone, I’m a keen user of wikipedia. In the 50s there was so much that couldn’t be talked about. The restriction of opportunities today is a dreadful thing for younger people. A big thank you for your kind words.xxx

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