I've always loved Sundays. My earliest memories are waking up with the smell of a roast dinner wafting through the house, a lazy day at home without any thought of school (which i detested) just a day of playing, exploring, riding my bike around the neighbourhood. Its sounds idyl. Let me fill in some blanks. We lived in the East end of London, although not as dangerous as it is now it was still a rough and harsh place to live. My parents were Greek Cypriot immigrants and my mum spent every single day, usually from 6 am till 8pm working on a sewing machine making dresses for a local factory. She never spoke a word of english and my dads attempts at the language could be hilarious. In fact there were some words he used that were a totally made up mix of english and greek, and for many years i thought they were actual words. The sound of my mums sewing machine was the road drill like sound that continuously ripped through the house every time my mum put her foot on the pedal. Like some mental motorbike with no exhaust being revved till the pistons exploded. My dad was a very smart man, creative. In fact he was a well known writer of short stories and poems. His focus was to make a house for his family, once he'd done that he felt his job was done and he kind of retired. He spent most of his time helping my mum or writing.
To that backdrop, i use to take myself off exploring. Making things from scraps of wood, always seem to be making something. Compared to today i had so much unsupervised time. I clearly remember at the ripe old age of 9, building a go cart. No idea where i got the wheels, probably a dumped old pram. There was no Google then so it was just what my mind could conjure up. No instructions or prior knowledge apart from my own imaganings. I built this cart and remember my trying to get it to go down a hill, then it collapsing in a heap at the first bump. I never gave up. Each attempt was a prototype not a failure. I had no one to tell me what was right or wrong, no one to say i could or couldn't. No one to remind me of the unbelievable dangers of using hammers, chisels and (very sharp) saw's. Yes i cut my hands sometimes, yes i missed a nail a sunk a hammer head into my little thumb. I don't ever remember crying to my mum or any adult if i hurt myself. I learnt to self sooth and move on.
After a day full of adventures it would be dinner time. There would always be a massive hunk of meat, various yummy greek food, greek style potatoes and a massive salad. i would eat till i was bursting then off i'd go again. These days people would judge that i was neglected and uncared for but in my parents generation and culture they just didn't do "relationship" I had incredible freedom, at least that's how i saw it.
In many respects all my training and experience over the years has been about how to go full circle. School (did i mention how much i hated it !) collage (hated it even more) work (just about tolerated it) all the structures, responsibilities and requirements that we are required to carry. The must do's the must have's the can't do without. Of course we can't just permanently opt out, but we can at least suspend it all for a time to play. Someone asked me what my goal in life was, i have to say its to build a playground, with endless discoveries to be made, endless things to build, sing dance and laugh. These are the things that give me passion, energy and joy. Let everyday be a Sunday.