(This is my first piece of homework for the creative writing evening class I’m attending. The brief was to take a childhood memory from a friend, and then fictionalise it. To be honest, I’m not all that happy with the result – but the feedback from the class was very constructive.)
I was six years old, and not for the first time felt that the universe was against me. The weight of a thousand worlds pressed upon my shoulders, and the clouds of a biblical storm raged above my head. If anyone were foolish enough to risk eye-contact with me, they would surely dissolve into a pile of ash.
I was on holiday … and had been denied an ice-cream.
Oh, the injustice of it! The horror! I was certain we had passed a million ice cream vans. Though I knew my father to be incapable of understanding the simplest of things, I was fairly certain even he could not have missed all of them.
It was a travesty, that’s what it was. Even though I was too young to know the word “travesty”, I knew what it meant. It was me without an ice-cream.
It had been a long day, and it was getting late. The hot sky of the day had turned to a dark, sleepy orange. I was tired. Deep down I knew that my evening would be supper, bath and bed. But there is something about icecream that speaks into the very soul of a little boy.
Dad and I walked back to the villa. Not really together – he was in front, and I lagged behind. I couldn’t possibly keep up, when all those chocolate flakes and rainbow sprinkles pulled at me like gravity.
Mum would have bought me an ice-cream. Of this I was certain.
Well, actually I wasn’t certain at all. But a slim chance from Mum was still better odds than no chance from dad.
I stopped walking. I extended my lower-lip to its full amount and gave him both barrels. It was an awful, awful wail – a banshee scream mixed with footstamping to trigger earthquakes.
There was nothing Dad could do or say. I was beyond reason. I could not be told, nor dragged. I wanted mum.
He walked the rest of the way alone, leaving me in the street. They arrived back soon after.
There was no ice-cream.
Supper, bath and bed seemed to come quicker than usual.