When I Was Young
There are so many memory invoking articles on how the world was different when we were young. By we, I mean people who were born in the late 70’s and grew up in the 80’s (and got drunk in the 90’s)…
I read a great post recently which said we had the last “real” childhood before the world veered off down health and safety avenue via politically correctness gone mad boulevard. This made me realise just how lucky we were. I won’t go into too much detail about why as all those articles cover it just perfectly. Many of the articles reminisce on the freedom kids had in the 80’s – they tell of how we could wander miles away from our back yards and our parents didn’t have to live in fear of anything happening to us.
For me looking back, it was undoubtedly great to have that freedom but after seeing a photo for the first time in years I was reminded of some of the things us kids actually got up to whilst our parents were happily unaware…
When I saw more of these pictures I sharply inhaled and feared for my younger self’s life! Once I caught my breath, I thought that it must have been fun when I was young but would I do it again? Would. I. Fuck.
Anyone looking at this for the first time would no doubt think it a great shot of a Scottish Glen. Not me. No, I thought “Holy Shit, I used to slide down that waterfall”. Not just slide down it but usually land head first into the massively deep pool of water at the bottom. To top it all off I would then climb up the rocks at the side and do it all over again! Was I mad? I think from now on I will stick to taking photos of nice waterfalls rather than interact with them. Although, maybe not that one. I think if I ever see that waterfall again in real life I might suffer more than just a sharp intake of breath.
In order to get to the above waterfall you would have to pass the quarry and this picture may not look so pretty to someone viewing it for the first time. When I saw it I thought “I could have actually died that day”. We weren’t stupid enough to go into the actual quarry. Not because it was full of dangerous machinery but because if someone saw you they would tell your parents and that was much worse. No, we were stupid enough to climb up the back of the hill to see where it would take us and then suddenly, just past a bush was that sheer drop that you can see at the top. Literally one more step and I wouldn’t be writing about it today…. Needless to say I stuck to the designated paths from that day on (mostly) and these days if the path doesn’t have tarmac on it then it doesn’t have me on it.
We were lucky enough to have a dry ski slope in our village and we got skiing lessons at school. Kids love skiing, kids arent always at school, so what happens when they want to use the ski slope when school is closed?They climb to the top carrying wooden boards, bin bags and anything else they can find lying around – obviously. They then proceed to slide down the ski slope on said articles. This could even have been an early version of Tubing. We, however, just wore jeans and t shirts with no gloves or any other safety gear whatsoever. The fact I still have all my skin amazes me right now as I play a scene in my head of me whizzing down that slope, unable to stop and crashing into the barrier at the bottom. Did I have a death wish? Did I?
That’s only three examples but I can think of many more involving me, derelict factories, abandoned farms, junk yards, bridges and bulls. All equally or maybe even more dangerous as the situations above.
We all watched the highly terrifying public information/warning videos but did we really pay attention…really? When I re-watch them now I am amazed that we weren’t traumatised by watching them as kids! Are you brave enough to watch them again?
80’s Public Information Films
I know I have titled this post “Would I Do It Now? Would I F***!” and I realise how crazy and stupid some of the things we got up to actually were…but I’m so GLAD we did them and I wouldn’t change a single thing!
What about you? What did you get up to when you were young? Let me know in the comments below or tweet me @SteveSays2014