The start of a new week and another month. When we were young children, the first of each month was always greeted with cries of ‘White rabbits!’ I have no idea why.
This particular month is going to be a strange one and, at times no doubt, a difficult one for me. Perhaps if I’d not kept a diary, it’d be hard to think back and work out on which days certain things happened – almost impossible with 20 years gone by. But I do remember at the time of Jenny’s death, in October 1996, grabbing the calendar and leafing back through my diary to find the last day I saw Jenny alive – Saturday 31 August 1996. I must have been anxious to retain this fact – as if I was likely to forget it – as I’d pencilled in the diary’s margin: ‘Last time I saw Jenny’.
Apart from it being Jenny’s last summer, thinking back to 1996 and wracking my mind to remember what was in the news – the following three stories come to mind. The Olympics, in Seoul that year, I think; the murder of toddler Jamie Bulger and, the odd case of the man in his early 30s who went back to his old sixth form college mascaraing as a 17-year-old – and all because he wanted a second crack at his ‘A’ levels.
Checking up on these via Google, I get nought out of three for accuracy. My memory’s got terribly skewed. After much searching by, the way, the bogus sixth former was a 32-year-old Brandon Lee from Glasgow, uncovered in 1995. I wonder what he’s doing now.
Strange, since starting writing this post, I’ve deviated horridly from my personal memories of Jenny and August 1996. Maybe that’s because just it’s too painful.