Remembering my own childhood 'Summer Love Sensation', on the death of lead singer Les McKeown, aged 65, yesterday...
Summer of '76. En route to Southampton's Gaumont Theatre with my two 'bezzie mates' Sharon and Kimberley. Polaroid photo taken by our chauffeur, my rather bemused Dad. When we reached the theatre, a queue of excited teens stretched for what seemed miles, so we took our place at the end and waited for hours to take our seats in 'The Circle'. As the curtain raised and the Bay City Rollers bounced onto the stage, the audience as one, leapt to their feet, a mass of waving arms and streaming tears. We could only guess the song as it was drowned in deafening white noise, fans screaming their undying love to Les, Eric, Derek, Alan and Woody. Rollermania had arrived.
The Bay City Rollers were a worldwide pop music phenomenon in the 1970's. They sold more than a million records and songs like 'Bye Bye Baby', 'Shangalang', and 'Give a little love' had us queueing outside record shops clutching our pocket money, desperate to buy 7" vinyl copies so we could listen to them over and over again in our poster plastered bedrooms. The band topped the music charts as a generation styled itself in top-to-toe tartan and stripey socks.
The BCR's were a right of passage for many young British girls at the time ... you picked your favourite, fell hopelessly in love for the very first time and dreamed teenage girl dreams to the sound of the Bay City Rollers.
After creating Hyacinth Bunny and Bluebell Ellie-Bear earlier this month, I decided to make a teddy bear pal for them and Buttercup Bear came into being ... then I kept looking at the trio and thinking knitted jackets in appropriate colours might be a lovely detail to bring them together as a collection ... then last week, my poor dog Betty hurt her leg on a walk so I couldn't work upstairs in my workroom (bear with me, this does all make sense in the end ...!) as the vet forbade Betty from using stairs until after surgery (Betty always sleeps by my workroom door as I work). I took the opportunity to move my new collection of bears downstairs to keep Bets company and to cut a long and rather painful story short, knitted them sweet little jackets, with Betty sleeping peacefully at my feet.
I sometimes find that bears (and their friends) need a little time to let me know exactly how they would like to present themselves. The design process isn't always clear at the start of a new project and this sweet group of friends had clear ideas about how they wanted to look. I love the soft pastels they chose for Spring; they are so pretty!
As for my sweet Betty, she continues to put on a brave face whilst waiting to see the orthopaedic specialist. She loves to run and play, so this has been a worrying time, but I am sure that with expert care and plenty of love, she will soon be on the road to recovery.
Betty has always been the kind of dog who loves to live life in the fast lane. She is full of joy, a true delight to watch as she races like the wind, returning at the peep of a whistle, good girl that she is.
Unfortunately, it now transpires that my sweet girl has developed cruciate ligament failure, which will most likely require invasive surgery and a long, slow recovery period. Needless to say I am heartbroken for her, although relieved that we are now on the path to specialist referral and hopefully, Betty being able to run freely again one day. For now, we are restricted to short, careful walks and plenty of tender loving care.
Thankfully, Betty is currently managing her pain well and is as always, full of smiles, nose nudges and gentle licky kisses.
Please bear with me if I am a little slower with your orders during this time; I will continue to create teddy bears, but may need a wee bit more time now and again, in view of having to manage Betty's specialist hospital visits and after care.