My seventeenth year was a bad one. I turned sixteen in April, the time I should have been knuckling down and focussing hard on getting some decent O Levels grades, but I didn’t.
A handful of months later, my mother put my disastrous exam results down to the death of my father some six months before, but it was nothing to do with that. The reason I blew all my O Levels was that I never did any work.
My mother should have made me resit the exams. Instead, she packed me off to a Domestic Science College in the Malvern Hills the following September.
Now, domesticity and I have never been on the same squeaky clean level. Me, becoming a Domestic Goddess, was never on the cards, so it wasn’t the best place to have sent me and rebellious teenage streak still hadn’t run its course. I hitched a lift with two other students one Saturday afternoon, strictly against school rules, but we were miles away from any bus route. The young driver who picked us up, was out to impress the three impressionable teenagers sitting on the backseat of his car. Inevitably, he crashed his car, and we were delivered back to the school by the Police. We were extremely fortunate not to have been injured but, were all expelled before half-term. It wasn’t until I was twenty-one that I eventually got my act together having after completed a one-year English and Business Studies course.
The point of regaling such a dismal point in my life is that, as I now find myself without daily access to a supermarket, it is severely testing my non-existence cooking skills.
My pièce de résistance is probably a toss-up between tuna pasta and stew. We have only been lying low for a couple of weeks, but I have already received a few pointed comments sautéed in sarcasm and drizzled with a little innuendo.
I have more cookery books than I have ever cooked anything, so I’ve no excuse, and I am making an effort.