• Nellie Williams

Oh you pretty things


I woke up this morning and caught up on the news, then I did a gasp and a double take when I saw that Bowie had died. Surely it had to be a hoax. This beautiful being who turned 69 on the day my Mook turned 15 possibly couldn't have died. Not Bowie. Ziggy had been put to rest all those years ago but not the engma that was Bowie. The man who gave the world All The Young Dudes (my most favourite song ever), who I thought sang about my grandfather who was also Major Tom, who made us teenagers get up when he sang Let's Dance, who was Dancing In The Street had died and was joining the Heroes in heaven and the stars will be looking very different tonight.

But sadly it was true that the ugly cancer carriage had gained one more passenger and I cried for him, for all those I have loved and lost and for their families and loved ones left behind.

As I dropped my lot off to school and work I smiled at the beauty that radiates from inside and reaches their faces and all that they do - grateful that my life is blessed by my three pretty things who I am sure know that they are driving their mama and papa insane. I switched on the radio and all I could hear was Bowie and again felt blessed that this genius who had had such a profound effect on so many was influencing our air waves with his magical music.

Bowie was a huge part of my teen years when everything life went through many Changes and beyond; whilst everyone oohed and ahhed over their 80s and New Romantic idols I was listening to Bowie, when an old friend introduced me to Mott the Hoople there was Bowie, when we were Australia and had one CD in the car that we could all agree on listening to it was The Man Who Sold The World when I watched the opening of the 2012 olympics with Mme Cholet there was Bowie, I was inspired by the words of Pretty Things when I wrote this blog post a few years ago and was reminded of it today:-

You pretty things, don’t you know you’re driving your mamas and papas insane

I recently popped back to my old school and caught up with my cookery teacher and though I’d left school *cough* 29 years ago and I was now an adult with children, I could drive and buy wine but I still felt a teeny bit like a teenager. In my day Miss Tutcher was Miss Tutcher, nowadays she’s called Kim by the boys in her house. Kim? I’m an adult now and I couldn’t bring myself to call her Kim!

We chatted about everyone in my year, giggled over some of our antics, discussed the teachers who seemed archaic in the 80s (and I was gobsmacked to know that they weren’t really in their 80s in the 80s despite seeming to be) and what life was like now we’re older and role models to our children. We reminisced about my O level spinach cookery balls up, we remembered Rachel who tragically and suddenly died a few years back and we marvelled at how Charch has given us so much hope despite facing the final stages of her life.

Miss Tutcher (Kim) asked after my girls and I said “oh you know 2 of them are teenagers and it’s an interesting phase!!” I also said that it doesn’t help when people ask what I was like at that age. She looked at me and said (in that form tutor way) “so what do you think you were like at that age?”.

Do you know, no-one has ever asked what I was like at that age so I’ve never given it a second thought but I answered “oh you know as a teenager I was cocky, unsure, cool, fragile, rebellious, clueless, loyal, strong, determined, weak, tiring, boisterous, trendy, loved up, lazy, deaf, verbal, vocal, opinionated, loving, arrogant” – well you get the picture!! She looked at me and said “are you describing yourself or teenagers in general?”.

Actually verbalising how I thought of myself as a teenager (albeit under pressure in the teacher’s office) made me realise that how teenagers are these days really is no different to how we were in the 80s.

To my darling girls I thank you on a daily basis for being my gorgeous girls, I can forgive you your teenage years because they’ll be over before you know and when you’re older you’ll look back on your teenage years whilst advising your teenagers that what they’re doing is what everyone of that age has done.

Girls, thank you. I love you all. I do. I really really do. XXX.

Today we grieve and play his music but as Tina Turne and David Bowie sang everything will be alright. But for now I feel Comfortably Numb.

Thank you for the music, the tunes, the lyrics, the crazy, the company, the memories, the fashion, the influence - for everything. Yes Bowie thank you for everything. RIP

#DavidBowie #DavidGilmour #MotttheHoople #Alltheyoungdudes #RIP #cancer

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