Disco Inferno

disco loveIt is an early spring and the evening smells of cherry blossom and burning rubbish. Feeling tall and pretty in my 13 year old scraggy body I run across the park past a few dog walkers and regular drunks. On my way to my first ever disco night.

A home-made botched haircut stays put with half a can of my mum’s ancient hair spray. A string of fake pearls bounces off my (thankfully still flat) chest. My tights are sprinkled with red nail varnish dots to catch those persistent runs. Every few meters or so I have to stop and put a piece of cotton wool back into my brand new red patent leather shoes. I love them so much I don’t mind the agony and blisters.

I sneak into the dining hall decorated with a narcoleptic disco ball and worn-out garlands from last Christmas. The air is muddled with teenage sweat and cheap deodorant. I check my hair and stop in the doorway. Girls, all giggles and smeared lipstick, huddle together on one side. Boys, all attitude and gel in hair, play football with an empty Coke can on the other side of the room. A few balloons hover in the middle.

As soon as Sinead starts wailing about “seven hours and fifteen days” the floor fills up with awkward fumbling and first stolen kisses. A string of hopefuls queues to the Pretty Girl with Long Curls. What I lack in hair I make up with my je ne sais quoi. I strike a pose. I imagine therefore I am Cindy/Linda/Claudia.


The only odd one out – the Dumbo Ears Boy supports the wall next to me.

He will do.

I glance at him and he starts inspecting the sole of his shoe.

My cheeks burn.

The drunks in the park burst out laughing when I run past them.


Do you remember those awkward times? I would love to hear your stories!

I am linking up to  Once Upon A Time over at Older Mum (In A Muddle).  I am delighted to be joining her for a walk down the memory lane!

12 thoughts on “Disco Inferno

  1. This has brought back a flood of memories of teenage awkwardness. Like everyone else, all I wanted was to fit in, but I think I often felt like a square peg in a round hole.

    I remember clearly a time when I went to the cinema with four or five friends. My parents arranged to pick me up at the time the film ended. What I didn’t know (or to be fair, understand) was that my “friends” we’re going to walk around a cold, damp town in the dark for two hours afterwards, before going home. Somehow that was the “cool” thing to do, and I remember their laughter as I slipped away in to my dad’s car. I’m sure I felt horrendous at the time, but looking back I’m just glad that I didn’t waste hours of my life walking around in the rain! The teenage years are a minefield indeed.

    • Funny how we always want to fit in! And how what seemed so cool then is plainly ridiculous now – totally get the square peg in round hole thing 🙂 thank you for sharing x

  2. This is a lovely post, and really well written. Oh my thirteen year old felt for your thirteen year old. Such an awkward and self conscious age. I am really enjoying your ‘memoires’. I have a linky I run nearly once a Month called ‘Once upon a time,’ which is basically the back story of your life. Link up if you want to!

  3. Only just discovered this – very well written – very descriptive – I was there with you – in fact I was that 13-year-old. My daughter is on the verge of experiencing all this – and it has just reminded me how tough being a teenage girl can be.

    • aw – it seems like it has alwasy been tough and it is always the same problems unless you are the pretty and popular girl. I hope your daughter is spared the pain of going to school dances and if she does go… please don’t cut her hair 😉 x

  4. What a wonderfully written post. I remember these feelings well. Both as school discos and evenings on holiday. The songs I recall are Total Eclipse of the Heart (I was around 9!) and the other was Careless Whisper. Thank you for sharing this fab post with PoCoLo x

  5. Oh this brings back so many memories!!!

    Think I will write a blog post on it and link it up.

    Thank you for linking up with The Weekend Blog Hop

    Hope to see you again soon

    Laura x x x

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