Travelling~ at 15 (or 'that one time at band camp')
Ok. It wasn't band camp. It was my year nine school camp. Things happened. SO many things happened that shifted my very monochrome 14 year old perspective to a kaleidoscopic upbeat, life is amazing! kind of view.
Firstly, I got to leave home for a week. Epic. I was excited because my brother (who I dearly love now) wouldn't be there. Neither would his farts which occupied my nasal cavities and the bathroom pretty much always. Secondly, I had planned to sit with my girl gang for a seven hour bus ride and talk NONSTOP for seven hours (I'd been holding my breathe in practice, and because, farts).
So the bag was packed. Mum flung me out the door of the car (surely I was a joy to have at home at that age?) to the front of the school and I was face to face with a big blue school bus and 39 other chattery teens all vying for the rows of seats up the back where we could hide from the teachers but also dominate when their backs were turned. And as the wheels rolled, the teachers calmly requested the 'volume be turned down' but this was just the beginning. Loud talking, "Gangster's Paradise" by Coolio (oh we were SO gangster!) and a whole lots of two-finger whistling was going on, which I am proud to say I can still rip an excellent whistle (my Husband is always impressed- although he'll pretend he's not).
As I remember, the trip was disgustingly long and the AC broke down and one girl up the front of the bus (and I feel terrible sharing this) got her period and it soaked through onto the bus chair. Having sat up the back I had to watch her exit (stains, say no more) and witness a teacher take her aside for a conversation no 14 year old would ever want to have.
Moving on, we were on a tropical island, there were shenanigans galore and teachers giving up on yelling at students by day two and eerily calm and maybe? smelling like whiskey when they were up close. There was a sense of freedom in the air. We climbed on top of buildings, snuck into each others dorms, went swimming with our clothes on and sometimes without and generally were big little kids.
We returned home with stories which have turned into memories which have become hilarious anecdotes amongst old friends shared over skype or phonecalls or tea or wine. Our children know none of these, yet. I wouldn't want to give them ideas, especially the 14 year old (ponytailed gangster darlingheart).