Observing the 1980s
Hale, Louise, (Part 1 of 1). Millenium Memory Bank
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Interviewee's beauty salon
Hale, Louise, (speaker, female)
Turpin, Alison, (speaker, female)
Part 1: Introduces herself..living in Old Catton." I'm 30 this year..because of what everyone else has said I'm a little bit dubious..I really don't think about age too much, won't make any difference..one of these big milestones..like 30, 40 50..one of the first ones you get to..the other ones are like growing up...I'm not going to pay any attention to it.. Parents moved from Harlow in Essex " so I'm a Norfolk Broad, not an Essex girlie " laughs Family description. " dad a long distance lorry driver..I think is in his late fities...mum a Production Manager..me and sister 2 years younger.". 0.41 " I wouldn't say my relationship with my mum as close as some other people's..good friends, talk on the phone every day, couple of days..feel strange if we don't..dad only home at weekends so try to get to see him..or that feels strange well..sister shot off to London to do her thing..hear from her as and when..her N Year's resolution to speak to someone in family every fortnight..so is a week late with that.." laughs.. Sister taken a year out from her Fine Arts course.. 2'02 On sister " our lives are very different, on diff wavelength, look different..when we were younger I was.. not mouthy..I don't know if lived in my shadow is quite the right word..she's gone off to get away..she's very opinionated on..politics, racism..I don't have very strong views...live and let live..we don't talk about things don't agree on..". 3'55 Dad been driving 16/17 years..had been a factory supervisor before, was made redundant ", had quite an effect on the family..all of a sudden think what's going to happen..the story was took a bank loan to do driver's training course, had to get job to pay bank loan off..put some effort in..got night work in Food Processing place..in afternoon went up to yard to shunt lorries around" and volunteer driving..led to a job " I was 16/17 (at that age) you're not proud of dad..don't realise what they achieve, being out to work myself don't think I could do that...". "Thinks parents kept the redundancy worry from them so they wouldn't be anxious " you didn't expose your children, didn't then, to that kind of worry, pressure..that there's no money in the house, dad isn't working at the moment..fortunately not unemployed for too long before got job and was some money coming in. " " I can remember having a trip to Yarmouth Pleasure Beach a couple of times a year" went camping in Scotland.." that was memorable, were highlights, we saved up our pocket money for them..very simple..trips to cinema..". North Walsham " it's a small market town, there's not much at all for people growing up, age of 11 or 12 we used to go into town on the bus..4 miles, would do a spot of shopping which was great, would go in with sister, feel all responsible and would have to get this bus and remember to catch it to get home..first bit of independence Evenings " Youth club and the odd school disco..if parents not there to take you..mum and dad were good for ferrying us around..understand there's more now with the sports centre..roller skating. we weren't part of the local scene because were in country, 4 miles out of town.I don't think I would have wanted to hang out in town..when in teens would go to the local youth club...a room on two levels, soft drinks and sweets, could sit at tables and drink or socialise..(dancing) always felt self conscious..was big thing..are you going to dance ? no, I'm no good at it...laughs.. (music) Madness..we had the Stranglers, very early 80's, Frankie Goes to Hollywood, used to do Ooops Upside Your head on the floor, seemed to be an in-between time with music and fashion..not much going on.. " I've never been overly fashion conscious..remember looking round at school and thinking would be nice to have a kilt, they were in, as a family couldn't keep up financially speaking..so I always got my things at end of fashion, kilts were in and ruffle-y type blouses, very Adam and the Ant-y..we always had to have really tight jeans, if weren't tight enough you didn't go out..had to dry them on the radiator."(laughs). " I'm not a fashion victim (now) like classic stuff, most of spare time I spend in leisure wear..do a lot of sport, so tracksuits, leggings, aerobics gear..I keep an eye on what's going on My first day at school can remember being pushed up the road in a pushchair, screaming my head off and being pulled off (my mum) by a dragon of a teacher..it was the end of an era and a big thing going to school, that was a scary thing for me..". Mum had a strict upbringing " nan had 8 daughters and my mum came somewhere in the middle..she got kept off school...by nan to help with the house..she could have gone so much further academically, she always wanted us to do well, but not a pushy mum...she was like..do your best as you've got a chance. " never discussed my mum's life in any detail..heard about her beehive and will often say this is how I did my hair, or my make up...so know what she was about, but not what she got up to...". " when I was 18 and I'd got a serious boyfriend and he wanted to take me on holiday and I said mum will never let me..don't dare ask..anyway asked her and she was there and she said yes..I could have fallen over..so shocked, she looked at me and said you didn't expect me to say yes..said there is a reason for it..and when was engaged to my dad he'd wanted her to go away to the Isle of Wight for a weekend and of course she'd said no..she remembered how that felt, never forgiven nan for it..so had made up her mind not be like that with my upbringing on upbringing " she worked hard to bring us up well (mum), put it this way I didn't wear make up until I was 13..would try and sneak out of house..felt was on tighter rein than my sister..I had to break through the barriers first and so didn't seem to her so awful..one daughter had been there first, I think I had it tough....". Life turned out as expected ?? " Career-wise no..when I was 7 was daydreaming would live in cottage with cousin Sandra and roses round the door..was never going to learn to drive a car..my daydreams when a girl..of course when grow up don't live in cottage with your cousin...etc..I never spent a long time daydreaming at school...I'm going to be this or do this...be a model or pop star..". Supportive parents " we could work as hard as we wanted or not, as case may be Talks about piano lessons and not being forced to practise.... " I'd never been to a beauty salon...no tell a lie..been at 14 for a leg wax..that was a small salon, barely a room, didn't get to look round..was torturous...". " because my mum had very strong hairs..she said to me must not shave legs..my hairs, because I'm fair, are fine but come through quite furry..used to sort of twinkle (laughs) and when you're 13 /14 so self conscious and said as won't let me shave them what can I do ? She (mum) was in a quandary..as to what to do She'd never been to a beauty salon.....realised I needed something so we ended up going for my very first leg wax..can't remember much about the process, room was dark and dingy, girl who did it didn't stand out..best thing was getting into bed that night and thinking how smooth my legs felt and how weird it was. Getting into Beauty therapy " interested in body massage, thought would be glamorous thing to do..other thing was catering or the police force, something mum said about being in police force only have friends in the police force...". had Glandular Fever so late enrolling for Paston Sixth Form and had to see the Principal... " said what do you want to do...we fancied doing a body massage..right Gt Yarmouth College 4 A levels off you go..and it felt right.. and I bounced home from college that day and said "mum I'm going to be a Beauty Therapist..that was how fell into it..". On various B Therapies and how been around for centuries " what is coming round now is stress relief stuff because we're all so stressed, so much more pressure..to be meeting deadlines, having a family, holding down a job.. I think it's more the stress relieving..do an awful lot of body massage,...people come and see me just to have a minute to themselves..". A "Ladies'Salon " if I was a gent or a lady lying on the sunbed and had a member of the opposite sex on the opposite side of a curtain wouldn't feel comfortable with that.." Body Image " I see so many people..ladies come in and say I weigh so many stones, this amount overweight, I hate it and am working really hard, and everything they do revolves around how they look..not just weight, hair or blemishes on the skin..the other type of person is what you see is what you get.....had people who've come in with a tiny blemish..want it dealt with it..and been so minor, so insignificant I've actually said you need to go away and think about something else..too wrapped up in youself..". " I'm somebody neutral.. (people treat as confidante)..they know won't go any further..confidentiality thing, and a lot come to see because need to unwind, down, fed up with themselves..problems at home, with their health, low self esteem, I hear about it..a lot of confiding. ". 2'16 Feel a woman of the world as hears so many things and puts own life in perspective..makes you look at yourself..dealing with people.. 1st boyfriend " met him when I was 15..first serious boyfriend..makes it sound like I've had loads, which I haven't..he was 18 and he drove his dad's car and could pick me up, that was 2 years and a good 2 years.." met " through a friend of a friend in a pub function room...said hello, then he was on the phone saying would you like to come out for a drink...I was terrified..he said how cool I sounded on the phone..when got to know each other he said how he's been shaking and had to pluck up the courage..I obviously managed to hide my nerves..our first date at the beach..then came back to drop me off, stayed for Sunday lunch....you always feel like you're being scrutinised, I felt for him, he for me, everyone was really nervous and awkward..hello, how are you...I was the eldest daughter and this was my first boyfriend so it was a first for everybody mum always said " I trust you to behave yourself..very meaningful, knew exactly what she meant, so I behaved myself..". " If you're a rabbit you learn a lot from your sex education (laughs)..we learned a bit from school but was pretty limited to rabbits, v mechanical " When I was 14/15 was dead scared of the whole thing, I never got any sex education from home..when did broach the subject told to go off and play..when I was in my teens were some very promiscuous people around, girls who seemed to know all these things..I wouldn't have dared..it was a topic of conversation...whether they were fast developers and we were slow developers..always those people that go out and try things..". " I got so much flack because didn't wear a bra until was 13, I was a late developer and not one of those girls that always had a boyfriend at school, got flack from boys and girls, but girls are catty...picked on, you're on tenterhooks as to who's going to say the next remark..most of the time would be ok..would be the odd phase until found someone else to taunt..". " I've always had the feeling if you don't like it that's tough, can't change it, is who I am..". First period (laughs) " it happened late Summer holiday between my 4th year and 5th year, by most people's terms that was quite late..can always remember my mum saying to me " there is a time in an lady's life when she loses a bit of blood, and I was expecting a nosebleed (laughs) that was before Biology lessons at school..so when it happened I was, not curious, I knew what it was, but what's the word, nonplussed a little bit sort of oooo..I think thought thank God had finally happened, they can't rib me about it any more, because the longer it goes on, they say " I've got my period, and you think, I haven't..and then more people say..and you think I still haven't..more you start to wonder is it ever going to happen..I didn't want it to happen that badly but you want to know you're the same as everyone else, you're of that ilk..so when it happened I was chuffed, but not for long, realised the implications of it...it was like phew, happened, a landmark " I was underage when I met this bloke so was very nervous about it, (boyfriend) I don't think he was a stranger to it..I was very nervous and didn't have the relationship with my mother to say look I'm ready to sleep with this bloke..only time came up in conversation..we'd had " Life " the anti-abortion people in at 6th form and I mentioned this...and mum said..." while we're on the subject "..and it was all very tight lipped.." I'll take you round the doctors and can go on pill, which to me was a scary prospect..didn't like the idea..was such a drastic step to take, don't like the idea of tablets anyway, having said that I'm on it now..but I took a long time to mature..so I fobbed it off, case closed, so we didn't have a sex life to speak of, just a lot of fumbling around and very nervous, from a lack of understanding, terrified would get pregnant, a lot of mystery shrouding it, wasn't something I felt comfortable with..what if my mum found out ?" part of you thinks you should be (having sex)..been going out a certain length of time, part of you wants to for various reasons..that you feel are growing up, want to share something, wasn't a conscious thing..happened or didnl't happen I suppose.". everyone thought we'd be together and this would be it..he asked me to get engaged and I said no, and asked several times, although didn't want us to split up knew I had a lot of growing up to do..we were together just under 2 years..I knew I wouldn't settle down, was 16/17..had to do stuff, knew wouldn't be happy with one boyfriend from 15/16...I hated it, was horrendous, took long time to get over it Felt " rejection, sadness..I missed him terribly, you think this person doesn't want me anymore which is the worst feeling, it took a long time for me to think. this is the right thing..it was more this person doesn't want me..a lot to come to terms with when only 17.". " I was then on my own for 18 month, .always had a lot of male friends, platonic, always been very definite over want a relationship to be platonic or otherwise. I met a bloke with him for 7 years, ups and downs and downs and ups..we had a strange relationship, I knew again didn't want to spend rest of life with him, but didn't do anything about it..hard to wake up to that and act on it..asked me to marry him 4 times..I turned him down, knew wouldn't go on, not strong enough to finish it, it..withered and died.." " I had a relationship that was beyond my years..between 18 and 25, I lived with him, kept house, had a strong social life, not a good relationship, when other 18 to 25 year olds now are doing all sorts of things..it's the height of your life, your training, get your first job, wages, car, you're out there, I didn't do any of that, I lived with him..we had crisis after crisis..he drank, abusive..you always think that person will change, wake up one morning and think have treated her badly, will make amends was waiting for that for 7 years...thought could ride the storm out, we ended up living separate lives under one roof..he's be at the pub all evening, I'd go off with friends and keep busy to hid from it " Sometimes I felt out of my depth and quite lonely at times, didn't want mum and dad, they thought the world of him, he was a rough diamond, I think mum had an inkling, knew he drank, not what went with it..never hit me..but got shoved around a bit and a bit of verbal..he didn't treat me as should have done..made me very strong, and that 's not a nice thing sometimes, can be a little bit, not harsh..strong...not generally a bad thing..on my own for 3 years after that and needed it to put myself back together..had a lot of platonic friends..didn't have anything left to give after several years of emotional rubbish..not many emotions left..had a brilliant time being single, recommend it to anyone...". Met current boyfriend last February.." seven years of rubbish and 3 years on my own have made me much more aware of how other people are, what I want and more importantly what don't want from relationships..and from a partner, don't want anyone that will prefer to be in a pub than at home with me, won't stand for being messed around, am stronger, have the outlook this is what I want out of life, either with me or you're not..a bit more black and white..it works for me..the guy I'm with at the moment has had a terrible time too..so we both work harder to keep each other happy.". Relationship " happened v quickly, shocked us both, always thought if working out stick with it, don't look to the future...if doesn't feel ok, do something about it and stop complaining...we met in February..he's separated, divorce coming through..he lived in Norwich, I was in Cromer"...decided to get a house together.." we've spoken about is this too soon? but feels right, looked at house at end of July, put an offer in..at end of October moved in " I'd like to be married, we discussed it..he's still reeling from first marriage..I think one day will just turn round and say " how about it " and I won't have dropped hints or pressurised him..he was saying at weekend..we live together, what difference would it make..he stood up in church and said vows that wants to spend rest of life with this person that's what I want to do..I want that announcement, in church or not,,that says I've thought about this long and hard..I'm going to spend rest of life with you, I want someone to feel that way about me...when I get married divorce isn't an issue, I set a lot of importance in marriage, and he knows that, the bit that upset him about his marriage was that partner didn't keep her vows...I don't want we've bought a house what more committment is there..well there is, there's marriage..". " I want children, can't even look after myself never mind children..(age pressure) I won't let that pressure sit on my shoulders..there's plenty of people that have children later 34/5..if happens fine, if doesn't fine..I'd like one..think would be nice for us to have something of our own, but we've got lot to show for relationship so don't need a baby...not a measure of achievement..my mum's dying to have a grandchild, but can't think about that because it's pressure..I just say to her you'll have to have a salon as your grandchild..that's all I'm responsible for...". 4'43 " sometimes I think how old I am and think they'll be too old to be young sprightly grandparents, don't think about it " terrible with money..if got it spend it..more careful now.maybe mortgage something to do with that..I think I'm growing up all of a sudden, now at 30..never could save, always worked, Sat job or babysitting, loved to spend money, presents for me or other people, don't care..shame haven't got loads of it..". " my eating patterns have changed because of work, don't have a set lunch..if I sit down at one what do people do who want appointments in lunch hour..try to snatch something during day and eat healthily..had a sweet tooth at school, mum always bought fresh fruit and veg, never had TV meals as such..had a good grounding. ". Gadgets more trouble than worth, use the microwave, but more the hob " lot of low fat, pasta and jacket potatoes...". Does a big shop and has things in the cupboard to rustle things up.. Not baptised or christened " don't think just going to church makes you a christian, don't think have to go and state these things, can if you want...I treat people nicely, don't steal, clean living type person..". " the Millennium thinks will be an anti-climax...everyone's going to want to go out, money's going to go up, will be crazy..my other half is a policeman, so hinges on his shift...all the leave has been cancelled for that 2 weeks...". " I'm hoping Norfolk will catch up with the rest of the world..feels like we're lagging behind, myself I feel getting left behind with computers..no interest, find them quite tedious, but it's escaping me..I think will have to do something, look at the schools, they're teaching children...I know the basics and need a bit of polish and to learn the language...".. No interest in politics..for me I just want to carry on being happy, think there's a lot to be said for being satisfied at work and happy at home..sounds cheesey but who cares, I've had a rotten time so being settled and happy at home is important to me..because you take it with you wherever you go..if you're having a good time it shows.
Interviewed for Millenium Memory Bank