The Time Capsule

When I was 14 I had my whole life planned out in front of me.  I would of course be married by the year 2000 – I would be 24 years old.  In my eyes at that time, 24 was ancient.  I knew that I would have my own house, probably some children of my own.

I wasn’t the precocious type.  I’m certainly not the type of girl who planned her own wedding at the age of 6 and wanted everything to be a certain way.  It was just that we were at secondary school and our teacher made us create a time capsule.  Not to be opened until the year 2000…we had to write down all our aspirations for the future as well as what we were like at the time of making the capsule.  I wish I had kept it, unfortunately, I can’t remember what I did with it, I had probably chucked it away within a week of making it.

The funny thing is – I didn’t need to keep it.  I remember it vividly. I thought I was going to study law and become a barrister.   I was sure that I was going to bring criminals to justice and change the world somehow.

When the year 2000 arrived, I wasn’t anywhere near married – not even mentally prepared for it, let alone having a place of my own AND children!!!! I definitely wasn’t a barrister.  I remember thinking back to those days – of where I thought I would be and where I actually was.  Worlds apart.  Universes apart.

It never fails to amaze me that so much pressure is put upon young people as young as 13, 14 – choose your options.  Choose your options, because these subjects will define what you will do for the rest of your life. Choose wisely, choose carefully because you don’t want to end up making the wrong choice!

I don’t know many people who became what they wanted to be at the age of 13 – or I suppose we’d have a world full of footballers, artists, singers, dancers – maybe a doctor or barrister, or teacher here and there – and not much more.

So those of you who are familiar with my style of writing, know that I enjoy a good ramble.  A good old monologue, where I begin by writing about something which may or may not have anything to do with the rest of the post.  Well, this post is no different you’ll be glad to know.

I was sitting with my girls earlier, the TV was on in the background – their programmes – obviously!  I remember being young and thinking about those useless parents who would let their children monopolise their lives.  How I would laugh and shake my head at the thought of those idiotic morons.  Why couldn’t they control their children?  And then I had my own.  And if having their programmes on means that I get five minutes of peace – you know what, I’ll take it!  You judge away!  Anyway, I digress.  The TV was on, their programmes were on, and then I heard some music that sounded really familiar to the background score of a film that my husband and I first watched together.  And then the floodgates opened and a million and one memories came gushing back.

At the end of this year, it’ll will be the tenth anniversary of when I first met my husband. A few days ago, my mum told me that because I was still single by the time I had reached 30, she used to get a lot of flack from her friends and others that she knew.  Why was I still single?  Why hadn’t I found anybody?  What was wrong with me?  She didn’t tell me at the time because she knew that it would hurt my feelings, make me annoyed and angry.  It actually astounds me that my relationship status was a topic of conversation and a headache to others.  Surely, everyone had their own problems at the time?

I wish I could go to those people, get them to gather around, me on a stage, with a wireless mic and a spotlight, perhaps a powerpoint slide behind me,  they – on seats in front of me, eagerly waiting to hear why I had been single at the grand age of 30.  And I would tell them – IT WAS NONE OF THEIR BUSINESS.

Nobody’s business.  That’s just how it was.  Was it on purpose? Yes and no.  No – because I wanted to meet the man of my dreams obviously.  Yes – I hadn’t met him yet and wasn’t going to compromise and be with any old Tom, Dick or Harry who wasn’t delighted that I was in their life.

I remember the first time my husband and I spent time together properly.  We had been on a few dinner dates which had been delightful.  Full of fun and conversation.  We were always talking about something.  But then we decided to spend some proper time together – which turned out to be best one of the best weekends of my life.  Every minute felt like some kind of adventure.  We were in my favourite city, London, where everything is vibrant all the time.  Lunching on the Southbank.  Walking along the riverside, coffees whenever we felt like it, watching the world go by.  Evening was approaching and we both wanted to watch a film. We were both fans of Bollywood – which we had bonded over, but being away from home meant that I had lost touch with that particular scene for a few years.  The previous night, we had heard a song on the TV that I loved straight away and found really catchy, he knew which film it was from and knew that it was meant to be good.  We decided to try and hunt the film down and watch it that evening.  We went to a few places – but nowhere stocked it. I thought it was time to call it a day, so we started to drive home.  On the way, I saw an old style video store, the type that we used to go to when we were little, my ‘never give up’ husband told me to park up at the side of the road, whilst he jumped out for one last ditch attempt to find the film. I was sure that he was wasting his time – but I didn’t want to dampen his enthusiasm and crush his spirit – I liked him way too much to do that!  He must have only been in the shop for about a minute, when he came racing back to the car with a huge grin on his face.  ‘How did you get on?’ I asked.  He held up the very film that we had been searching for, delighted that not only had he found it, but it was in the bargain bin and it had only cost £1!

That night we watched the film together.  I’ll never forget it and it is a film that I would recommend to both lovers of Bollywood, and people who aren’t a fan.  Johnny Gaddar – which means Johnny the traitor.  It was a thriller which had twists and turns at every corner. We sat and watched it – absolutely stunned.  What a brilliant day it had been topped up by a successful completion of a quest, and the film itself – that he had purchased for the grand total of £1 – was incredible.

The memory of that day had been locked away, safe and sound in some corner of my mind.  A memory that I hadn’t thought about in so long! But some random music playing in the background, (whilst I was having five minutes peace), unlocked it today and has brought me so much happiness.

There is no message or moral to my post today….just that you should probably listen to some music if you get the chance.  Who knows where it will take you, what memories it will bring back?

And as for my time capsule that I wrote when I was 14….perhaps the things that I thought were going to happen didn’t actually happen when I thought they were going to …but guess what?  Things happen when they are meant to – and when they do happen – life is pretty awesome!  Meanwhile, enjoy the ride.

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