Survival is something I’ve always managed. To be fair, my parents did the first 16 years without any input from me. I ploughed through many a KitKat, but it was their insistence on vegetables and coats that kept me alive. The way it works in my family is as follows: they first loosen their grip at 16 when you are encouraged to get a Saturday job. I was clamouring to start earning and had been doing cleaning jobs around the house for small amounts of money for years.
In our family, when you have a part-time job you are then responsible for non-essential clothing. Glittery tops, skirts with tassels, clompy patent leather shoes that are the sensible girl’s version of stilettos. They look pretty, but you can still run away from weirdos. My parents covered the basics – shoes, bras and glasses. The parts of you that are still growing and changing.
Then, when I started working full time, I took over these three. Bras and glasses were paramount, I needed both to stop me tripping up. Shoes went a little by the wayside as I replaced Clarks with shoes that came on a hanger.
Food and shelter are clearly key to survival. I’ve had ups and downs on both of these. There was a time when I lived in a flat so damp I permanently had a cold and my boss made me sign a document that said, “Sarah endeavours to eat more oranges”. Money was tight and an old work colleague said to me, “I think everything I eat comes out of a tin or an egg,” and I was the same. But I survived. I didn’t want my mam to worry, and only put blusher on instead of full make-up so she thought I was healthier. Things are clearly better now, but I’ve still got that need for KitKats and a tendency towards shoes that come on a hanger. Though thankfully my tasselled-skirt days are over.
So I was intrigued to watch The Island with Bear Grylls to see what obstacles they were facing. I saved up two episodes to watch back to back on my device (that always sounds iffy to me) while on the road. But then the wi-fi didn’t work. Oh, how will I survive? Wow, things have changed. Then I thought, I bet 3G is rubbish on The Island and they’re all having to wander about to find a spot that works. Maybe there are tins but no tin openers. I sadly have no idea how they’re getting on. I’m assuming they’re all still alive and catching fish with their hands and drinking their own wee. As least, I hope that’s what is happening. In proper bras and shoes, of course.