Sunday, 22 November 2009

First, I was born - 0

If anyone can identify that quotation (minus the zero) from a published book I will be mightily impressed. If it's the same book I'm thinking of, of course.

I know, darlings, that you will miss me terribly while I'm away. So here are a few posts of Memories of Z's significant dates.

Obviously, I have no memory of the day I was born. But I can tell you a little about it. To start with, I was a much wanted second baby, born more than five years after my big sister. My parents had rather given up hope, which is part of the reason I was given a name meaning 'Life". Mind you, I should have been a boy, for family reasons (whole family name has died out now, apparently). I was a great big baby, weighing 9 lbs or 9 1/2 or 10 lbs, I can't remember what I was told, and I was very long. My parents expected me to grow into a six-footer. I don't think I grew much past the age of six months or so, however and was tiny for many years. Now I'm just short.

At the time of my birth, my parents owned and ran a hotel in Weymouth, on Bowleaze Cove. It's a rather splendid Art Deco building - if you've seen the Poirot series with David Suchet, the white-painted buildings featured in that were from the same era. They were reluctant hoteliers; it was force of circumstance. We moved to Oulton Broad, now part of Lowestoft in Suffolk, when I was four years old.

My mother looked after me when she was free, but I had a nursemaid called Alice (I think, I don't remember her) as she had to work long hours at the hotel during the summer season.


Anonymous said...

Sorry, I can't place your quote but was interested in the size thing because Lenin was the same - 9lb 2oz and very long, she looked huge compared to the other babies on the ward but by the time she was two she was below average and has finished up at a smidgeon over 5' 1", and so is shorter (just) than me.

sablonneuse said...

Have I missed something? I didn't know you were going away - or are you having the op after all?
Anyway, if it is a holiday - enjoy. If it's the latter - get well soon.

Christopher said...

No, you've beaten me with the quote. What were you to have been called if you'd been a boy? Apparently through pregnancy I was referred to as Wee Margaret.

Eddie 2-Sox said...

Good idea for filling the gap Z, I'm looking forward to hearing more about my fave late-forties chick.

By the way CA, is your daughter really called Lenin?

Anonymous said...

No, Eddie, she isn't. It is just a very appropriate nickname. I refer to the other one as Attila - equally appropriate in its own way!

badgerdaddy said...

Wouldn't be from The World According To Garp, would it?

Four Dinners said...

I wasn't born, my dad pissed against a wall and the sun brought me out....;-)

Anonymous said...

First comment here, and I give up - I can not verify your citation. Would you be so kind and reveal the title?
BTW are you leaving?

badgerdaddy said...

Or could it be from the completely brilliant Middlesex, by Jeffrey Eugenides?

Z said...

It's from one of the Hyman Kaplan books by Leo Rosten. Wiki tells it better than I can -

Mago, thanks for visiting and leaving a comment, and no, I'm not leaving!]

4D. Oh dearest 4D, what more is there to say?

I have no idea what I'd have been called, Christopher. It never occurred to me to ask while my parents were alive and now no one knows. It's possible that they didn't decide - we never chose a name or discussed any until after our babies were born.