There's no talk like veranda talk
WE THREE sat on the veranda at the end of the day, watching the last of the golden day leave Lismore.
It had been stinking hot and was finally - finally - cooling down. The birds were wheeling across the city on their way to bed and the hot sun was slowly sinking in the west.
We talked about the changes in the weather and the way time shifted and moved as you aged. How some things went fast (children growing up) and some things slowed (ability to react quickly or remember details) and how we were getting used to the ageing process. Or not.
Friend one said: "My hair. It's getting finer and paler and God knows where my eyebrows have gone. Everyone appears to be taking eyebrows very seriously these days. Look around - there's some very impressive eyebrow work going on. Sometimes it's as if there is a competition for the most elaborate set of eyebrows. Quite distracting. Mine, however, seem to be quietly fading away.
"I like body hair,” she went on, "I don't mind a nice hairy armpit. Am I alone in view in a world of Brazilians, waxing and plucking? And men - what happened to them? They seem a bit hairless these days. Now it's all shaved heads. Do you remember pony tails and sideburns? A decent thatch of chest hair and a nicely groomed beard is a thing of beauty.
"Only on men though,” she added, "Not that I'm being gender oppressive, you understand. Not really on board with the bearded woman look. Although I know I could be very dated here.” We nodded.
Friend two said: "I am looking forward to the time when pubic hair makes a comeback and is valued as gorgeous. I used to have a magnificent bush.”
We reflected on this statement.
"I blame climate change,” I contributed. "Nothing makes sense any more. Our leaders are as confused as we are and all blaming each other about the series of environmental disasters that threaten our waterways and extinguish hope for the future.”
Friend two replied: "I don't think you can blame them for the demise of pubic hair popularity. Not entirely sure you can link those two things.”
Ah, veranda talk. Where else could you talk about climate change and segue onto pubic hair and back again so easily?
Maybe it was the overpowering warmth of the day but we were so relaxed as to be listless. The heat had sucked any sense of propriety out of us.
We sighed and sat and watched the first evening stars come out.