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  • I get the chance to go back in time at a pivotal moment in my life. They called me DD then.

    There I am playing 'I’m the king of the castle', in the half light with Malcolm, Peter and Geraldine.
    Its hilarious.

    Who ever gets to the top of the slope yells I’m the king of the castle, get down you dirty rascal and prevents other children from reaching the top. Geraldine is King and she successfully pushes me down the slope but Peter manages to pull her down and push her past him to roll down the slope. Then he is King.

    Auntie Annie walks all the way down two flights of stairs from her second floor flat and comes up the long garden to us.

    “Come in for supper now DD, I’ve been shouting for you and you never hear me.” she snaps.

    I am hungry and I start walking towards the entrance of the second block of flats; but, too my surprise, Geraldine, spoilt only child of elderly parents, whines,

    “Oh pleeeease let her play for a bit longer! We aren’t finished.”

    Well that was news to me. I didn’t realise that I was so important in the game.

    “Alright,” Auntie says her face looking grim, “ten more minutes.”

    I whisper in DD's ear, "Do as she says! go with her! If you don’t she is going to give up on you and she will refuse to carry on looking after you whilst Daddy is at work".

    I see DD hesitate again, looking confused.

    "Don’t just give in to everyone. You have a right to have your own opinion. It doesnt matter that your sister always has the first and last word in all your disputes, you still need to stick up for yourself."

    Auntie Annie starts walking away.

    "You don’t understand. Auntie Annie is depressed (she feels very sad) she has to look after Uncle Mark and Arnold and keep an eye on fifteen year old Beryl and twelve year old Sandy. It isn’t her fault that mummy is in hospital for 6 months, she won’t put up with you much longer. She will send you away from the flats to stay with Uncle Harry and you won’t see Daddy or Sandy for weeks."

    "Auntie", DD calls, “I am coming“.

    “Spoilsport,” yells Geraldine.

    “Oh, what shall I do?” DD says crying.

    “It doesn’t matter if you are not popular with your friends! What matters is that you stay living in your own flat near to Auntie and spend all weekend just with Daddy, and you won’t loose sight of Sandy. sleeping in your own bed and eating your favourite food".

    My 6 year old self goes back to the flat and sits down with my cousins Arnold and Beryl, and my sister Sandy

    After supper I enjoy watching Sandy, who has no time for me now she is thirteen, getting ready to go to the youth club with Beryl; putting on a full red skirt, with three petticoats, and black and white chequered shirt, and pulling on heavy chain bracelets. She has no time for me but at least I can see her.

    I watch Arnold put on a record and pull Sandy towards him to teach her to jive; and she swirls around and around.

    If I had gone to Uncle Harry’s house I would lose my confidence and work as a servant for his witch like wife. I will feel isolated and lost.

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