So, what do two foreign children do when they arrive in a new country?
And after school, what better way to spend your time than hanging out with your new friends? I expect this was my 7th birthday party which, unlike the following year’s debacle (another story for a another time) looks to be a fine success.
And here’s the whole family: my dad, my mum, me, and my brother. Uprooted in 1998 from idyllic Alpine Germany and dropped into a world of fast food, fast cars, and beautiful beaches – which bizarrely closed to the public at sundown.
When I was a teenager in cloud-muddled Reading, I often wished I were a High School student back in Florida, a life with summer camps and malls and beaches and – from what I could glean from television – buckets of glamour.
That feeling passed, of course, but I do want to go back to see the Everglades, eat Key Lime Pie in an art deco cafe, and spend the day reading a book on the beach. My one big regret is that we failed on a magnificent scale to stay in touch with anyone from that time. A lesson I have now learned!