I don’t know why, but I had this song in my head for a couple of days… I could have jumped on the Internets, and listened to it. But it is just not fun to reach out and grab whatever you want all the time… Sometimes you just want life to offer you stuff…
And so it did… Playing the 1991 hit on the radio today.
I was automatically in my early teens again for a moment. It was Friday, I was wearing my sharpest outfit, even if I knew the boys couldn’t care less about me and my looks… We were at the Sawmill, the social club for us expats, lost in a corner of beautiful Guinea, far from our families…
It was after supper… because supper didn’t matter much on Fridays. Supper was a “lets-get-done-with-this-fast” thing, before regrouping in our lair. Friday was the only night of the week when we, youngsters were allowed to unlock the den.
We had a little room, with walls painted from floor to ceiling with what could have been considered graffitis. But it really was fine art, you see? We should know, we had done the painting ourselves!
Only 10+ years old were allowed in our “club”. Yeah, we had to keep the “kids” away from the slow dancing and the occasional kissing in a corner, when the lights went down… They could have told adults what wild things were going on in there, you know?
I wasn’t one of the slow dancers or lucky girls getting kissed in the corner… In five years (so let me count quickly on my fingers…. around 200 Fridays!!) I danced 2 slows… Do I need to tell you I remember with whom, and on which songs!!?!
No, I was the girl guys didn’t lay eyes upon, and my place was, most of the time, just outside the “club”. There, set under the huge mango trees, were set 4 picnic tables, where no one ever ate. The two in the back were partially hidden by the trees’ lower branches, and reserved for the young love birds… You see, kissing is something that can be an outdoor activity too. The two tables closer to the main building (where the adults spent their Friday evenings) served as a resting area for tired dancers, and where people in need of “counseling” gathered for a chat.
That was my role, most of the time. I was the girl to confide in. The shoulder to cry on, the one who had all the good advices, or so others seemed to have decided. I had the least experience of them all, yet I was the one to go to when there was some drama. And God knows teenagers are experts at drama!
Why am I talking about this again? Ahhh yes, Mysterious Ways from U2. It was one of the tunes that made my head bob to its rhythm…. I always loved the line “If you want to kiss the sky, Better learn how to kneel (on your knees boy!)” Still to this day, it gives me a little chill down the spine… Imagining how it would feel to have that kind of power over a man…
I would have been a kind dictator though… But I guess we’ll never know!