This is one of my favourite family photos, which I dug up a few weekends ago in my mother’s attic. It’s rare to find action shots in family albums: usually they are posed, with everyone staring fixedly at the camera lens, whether on the beach or in a studio.
The three people are my godmother Rosalind (far left), my mother in the middle and my father. They’re on the way to a wedding, and I’m guessing it was about 1968? My mother will no doubt email to tell me I have it *completely* wrong.
There are so many things I love about this picture. The fact that my godmother is in exactly the kind of outfit I like to wear myself for smart occasions. That I still have the black patent handbag that my mother was given as a 21st birthday present and is carrying it here (I also found the heavy black rimmed glasses that my father sports when we moved a few years back). That my mother clearly loved false eyelashes and a heavy hand with the eyeliner as much as I do.
That both women are carrying gloves, even though they are wearing exceptionally short 1960s mini skirts (the one my mother is wearing was made from black crêpe, and was in the dressing up box for years. I wore it a lot in my teens, but my mother was tiny, and I grew out of it in my early twenties). That very non-establishment flower my father is sporting in his buttonhole.
It’s a perfect captured moment of so many contradictions in a changing world.