Saturday, May 23, 2009


I nearly threw this school photograph away before moving to Sicily, as I was not happy at that particular school. Why? Partly because it’s hard to fit in when you change schools at 15 and partly because it was an all girls' school! But I have to admit we were well taught there, by women ahead of their time, and I shall be grateful for that till my dying day.

Anyway, I’m very glad that I kept it, because it has caused much fascination here, firstly among my Alberghiera class, who couldn’t believe that we really all wore uniforms or that we sat or stood still long enough for the photographer to do his work. Other teachers in the school were also interested and one remarked that it would be impossible to take a photograph like that in Italy, because no one would stand where they were supposed to, be still for a moment or stop chattering to hear the photographer’s instructions! [I did point out that it was 44 years ago and we were a little easier to discipline than kids would be now.] All this inspired me to get the picture framed and I collected it this morning. A roomful of people in the art shop saw it when it was brought out from the workroom and they all shook my hand and congratulated me on having such a fine photo.

So there we all are on that summer’s day so long ago, young girls with our lives ahead of us, a generation that had not known war and which took university entry as our birthright. Which one is me? If you’ve seen the photo on my facebook pages, you will know; otherwise I’ll just give you the section - I'm not telling!


CherryPie said...

I have a similar photo from my school days...

I will have to find it out and post it!

Anne in Oxfordshire said...

hello WL..I wish I could enlarge your photos..:-( so i cannot tell which one is you1

I have no photos of my school days, the worst days, could not stand it..but never mind, ....oh yes your Italian students must of been fascinated.... I would of been too!! Maybe if my school days had been good, I would not be where I am!

What do you mean as "took University entry" as your birthright?

jmb said...

We did not take school photographs in high school but only in primary and elementary school, for some reason. I have a couple of those still.

I went to an all girls' high school and thought nothing of it at the time. We had all female teachers and everyone assumed we would all go on to become teachers. But that was one thing I was determined not to do, although most everyone else did as it turned out.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, Cherie. Oh, yes, you should post it! Hi, Anne. I tried to enlarge the top one but it just wouldn't work and I couldn't get it any clearer even on Photoshop. Sorry you hated your school. I didn't hate the studying part. I don't think you're doing so badly! By "taking univ entry as our birthright" I mean that, unlike the older women who taught us, we didn't, as females, have to fight to go there. We had to work hard, but provided you did that, it was taken for granted in that school. Hi, jmb. I just wasn't used to an all girls' school, having come from a mixed one. You did well to avoid teaching!

Unknown said...

Hi Welshcakes,
Really there is no way to pick you from that photo..not even if I knew you back 'in the day'.

I was also was a student at an all-girls school, but we had male staff members as well. Although the teaching was of a high standard, I have to admit that many, who were not suited to the teaching profession were encouraged to study subjects that
inexorably led in that direction. An English degree was fun to do, but it was limiting. Young girls of today , have many more options (or should I say they used to)

I trust you are enjoying life in Italy. I am in Australia, but I still miss the UK. Probably not enough to go back though.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hello, Mary and welcome. I'll tell you a secret: second row from back, sixth from left. I had very long, unruly hair which they made me tie in a "French pleat". I just wasn't used to an all girls' school. We were, luckily, told of all sorts of career possibilities but I know what you mean about the "push" into teaching. I love Italy. I miss things about the UK, but only small ones and now and then.

Liz Hinds said...

I've got a couple fo those photos. But where ...?

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, Liz. You, too, should find them and post them!


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