A Quare Attitude to Parties ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 335

I’m kinda curious to find out if m/any people share my attitude to parties. Maybe, I should just say my attitude to party invitations.

I’ve had an absolute, and I mean ABSOLUTE, aversion to parties since I was a child. I have no idea how or why it all started but the mere sighting of a  party invitation with my name on it has sent me into paroxysms of panic for as long as I can remember.

My poor mother did her best to iron out this ‘quirk’  with a whole combination of approaches: listening, cajoling, accompanying, finding a perfect party-piece that didn’t involve singing, buying me lovely party outfits, letting me wear whatever I wanted …..

Our debacles came to a head just before the Christmas when I was eleven. A colourful party invitation fell in the door along with the millions of Christmas cards that did the rounds in those days.  I went into immediate ‘flight’ mode and saw to my amazement that the ‘fight’ had gone out of Mother. She just knew that this had the makings of ruining Christmas for everyone and agreed that it was okay for me not to go. I still remember the relief  and being able to breathe and live again after that heart-stopping moment.

I always loved lying on Mother’s bed ‘helping’ her to get ready for parties; trying on her shimmery necklace that seemed to go with everything and zipping up her silky dress.  I’ve also spent decades adoring novels where parties abound ~ The Great Gatsby; Pride and Prejudice ….. Mills and Boon, you name it, I’ve partied with them!

But, absolutely nothing has changed. I’d still face having to address the Nation rather than go to a party or anything that had the makings of turning into one.

I was looking at party invitations and this one jumped out at me:

I wonder if the time has come to ‘wear purple’ and make up for lost time?

So is the world divided between ‘Party Animals’ and ‘Others?’  Where do you fit in? Did you always fit in where you fit in now?

Bandstands and The Great Gatsby ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 136

The Bandstand, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford
The Bandstand, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford

I’m always drawn to bandstands and I love the one that stands so proudly in Dungarvan, Co. Waterford.  It was erected around 1900 and I’ve been reading in the Waterford Co. Museum’s Dungarvan: Historic Guide & Town Trail that:

Here on many summer evenings, tourists known locally as ‘Gaybricks’ and Dungarvan residents enjoyed the music of the brass band. 

All of this makes me think of  The Great Gatsby and especially the 1974 version of the film starring Robert Redford and Mia Farrow. I had adored the novel as a teenager and it was in May 1979 that I finally got to see the film.

The reason I remember that first viewing is because it was the night before my final exams in Trinity College and my ‘big sister’ arrived to check on me and fully intent on advising me not to stay up all night cramming. She was stunned to find me lying on my bed totally engrossed in The Great Gatsby which I was viewing on the portable black and white television that my parents had given me for my 21st birthday the previous October. Seeing, that I was in another world, ‘big sis’ headed off, phoned home to report  our mother  that I was possibly ‘too relaxed’ about the exams!

Last night, I watched the 1974 version of  The Great Gatsby again and I have a feeling that no matter what the new version is like I will forever remain in this dreamy time-warp.


Go on tell me what bandstands evoke in you!