Best days of your life? Apart from some toe curling memories school was pretty cool / Tracey Smith

I can’t complain much about my time at school. But I do have lots of toe-curling memories that I would rather forget!!

Tracey Smith talks about her life at school this week
Tracey Smith talks about her life at school this week

I started at St Paul’s Primary school in 1974. I spent my first day stood my chair with my hand on head, fingers on lips for pulling funny faces to my new audience. It was pretty much down hill from there on in!!

My mum started as a dinner lady, and I thought it was wonderful. I usually went home for lunch but now I got to stay for school dinners. So why on my mums first day did I decide to get a huge spoonful of apple crumble and custard and flick it at the boy sat opposite me? Back to standing on the chair in the middle of the school hall…….fingers on lips, hand on head.

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I loved our school productions, and yes, I usually starred in them. I liked my teachers and I had lots of lovely friends. Living only a few doors up from school it was great inviting my little friends’ home for tea. “Little” being the operative word here!

I was so tall, and all my friends were small and petite! I still laugh at the time I thought I should carry my small friend home, proudly marching her up the street, lifting her under the armpits like she had lost the ability to walk and seeing my mum howling with laughter at the sight of us and asking me politely to put her down!!

The thing I hated the most was P.E.. Now this goes for primary and high school!!! Never, ever ask me to shimmy up a rope or to hurdle the vaulting box! You would usually find me on some mat trying to resemble a crab or whatever other shape look remotely gymnastic!! I can remember feeling triumphant that I could balance on the beam. It got worse when I entered high school. We had to do cross country running, which was from Edge End on Hibson Road, Nelson, right round Kings Causeway and the Hard Platts. It was no mean feat for a substantial lass.

I was grateful to sneak off to my friend’s house for a brew halfway round!!

With being tall I was in the netball and volleyball teams but if I was asked to run the 100 metres in record time……forget it!! I remember my P.E. teacher at high school screaming at me to run faster and said I resembled and old lady carrying a shopping basket!! No surprise that I never got picked to be on anyone’s team if it involved breaking a sweat!! Back to doing “the crab” at the back of the school hall!

All in all, school wasn’t too bad. Yes, I got picked on sometimes but I had gift of the gab and an older brother, so I was used to sticking up for myself. I was ever the comedian, so any confrontation usually led to me performing to the audience of onlookers.