Image by drinksmachine via FlickrI listened to Andrea Mclean on loose women yesterday saying how much she wanted to grow into a bra that her mother bought for her before she actually had boobs and it brought back memories of when I couldn't wait to get long trousers.
Andrea thought that when she began to fill the bra that she was on her way to becoming a woman and I thought that having long trousers would be a step nearer to becoming a man, but contrary to Andrea's mum, my mum put off buying me long trousers until I entered my teens. Most of the other boys in school and at Sunday school even though some were younger and smaller than me had long trousers and protest though I might my mother stuck to her guns. I did have jeans to run about with when I was out playing but getting back into short trousers in the morning for school or Sunday school became an embarrassment to me not, because I was ashamed of my legs, (I've still got a good leg for wearing a kilt although I don't ha.ha.)but because it made me feel inferior to the other boys.
Once I started secondary school I was allowed to wear long flannel trousers and for a Sunday my mother bought me a lovat green long trouser suit of which I hated the colour but accepted it because of the length of the trousers but little did I know at the time that it had to last me three years.
Of course the three years were a time when I grew rapidly up and out so after a years wear the suit became tighter and the trousers became shorter but my mother solved the problem by letting the trousers down and during the winter she bought me a beautiful warm woolen shortie coat that hid the fact that my jacket was tightening around my middle (which was fine in winter).
The school flannels were no problem as with being worn five days a week they wore out and were replaced by new ones that fitted but alas the Sunday garb grew tighter and tighter and the trousers could not be let down any more during the third year.
I still had to go to church with my suit on, so to try and hide the fact that the jacket was so tight it could not button I always wore the warm coat I had even, on the warmest of days. I would sit and swelter in the church, then after it came out the younger members would gather at an open air meeting at the beach where I would have to stand in the warm sunshine with my woolen coat on just to try and be one of the group but feeling once again inferior AND stupid this time as the sweat poured out of me.
Eventually I would try and keep out of sight and go straight home after church not going out in the suit unless I was forced to.
I started the sea two weeks after I left school and drifted away from the church gatherings and never wore the dreaded suit again, the suit I had so longed for when I was in short trousers.
Some of my first purchases with my wages were of course new clothes and I remember clearly standing outside the tailors in my smelly working clothes, picking the material for my new suit then getting measured by an under enthusiastic assistant who after he had finished told me it would take two weeks for delivery.
Undeterred I purchased a sports jacket and trousers along with shoes shirts, tiepins and ties, then went home and had a good soak in the bath before I hit the town.
I never looked back after that and had suits made to measure on a regular basis being driven by my dread of short trousers and tight fitting jackets so much so that even if I am on a beach in sunny Spain it has to be really hot before I change into my shorts, preferring to cover up the legs I always wanted to hide in my youth. (Perhaps that is the reason too why this proud Scotsman will never be seen in a kilt)
I still can't understand grown men parading about in shorts but perhaps they didn't go through the trauma I did regarding the length of my trousers and were some of the lucky ones who had long trousers bought by their mums at an earlier age than me.
I can relate to Andrea on wanting to grow up, and when she buys a bra now I am quite sure her mind will go back to her first one, as my mind wanders to my dreaded days in short trousers and my lovat green suit with the long trousers.(Well they WERE long when it was new ha. ha.)