Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Quest over Beauty

I grew up with a sister who was ten years older than me. She had all the beauty, appeal and style that big sisters should have. As a little sister, my task in life was obviously to learn from her.
There was evidently a stage in my life when I couldn't read, though I can't remember it. To hear a story before the sun had risen was difficult, as my sister would pretend to be asleep. Even after whispering, shoving and pulling the blankets off her she lay like a corpse. So, I would gently peel open her eyelids and stare into them with a smile. Realizing it was me with books under my arms, she stayed frozen.
'I know you're awake!' I'd announce, and after a bit of carry on, I'd get my story.
We were fortunate to have two phones in the house, so when boys called I was able to listen and learn how teens stumbled about asking a girl for a date. If they hadn't been so funny I wouldn't have been discovered and they wouldn't have had the opportunity to hear her interesting views on having a Little Sister.
If the conversation lasted long enough, the Brave may have decided to overlook her temper and go out with her. That was always fun. I negotiated piggy-back rides, riddles, more stories and games as the Brave waited in the lounge for MY Big Sister to emerge. As they sat doing the Boring Polite Conversation with my parents, I escaped to return dressed up in all her prettiest bras and undies. Yet again, the class was dismissed as she fed me volumes on her thoughts about me.
Sex education should always come from the Big Sister. How and when is usually best through windows of opportunity. We were in the public toilet/shower block at a very popular Melbourne Beach. She sat me up on the bench as she opened her make-up case to Do her face. As I explored the case contents I found a box with white things wrapped in cellophane.
"Are these lollies?'
'No, leave my stuff alone,' and she continued gooing her eyes.
As I unwrapped them I found they were fluffy if you pulled them apart and had strings attached.
I was just starting to enjoy swinging them about in circles when she slammed the lid shut, burst into tears and dragged me out through the masses of sandy, giggling, surfettes.
There were so many questions I still needed to ask her. Something in that perfect face told me, my searching was part of me, but my timing was...out.
jill in the middle
Big sister, Little sister and my fairy Godmother
the Questor at 4 years old

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