Writing + Memoirs: My bedrooms

Our fold up beds had curtains at the front. When we were in bed we could close the curtains and played that we were in a tent.


Words: bedroom, holiday, teasing, excitement, post

I used the word bedroom for my Friday It’s Write Easy at our library.

A bedroom is an important room in a home. When I taught at a rural school near Potgietersrus, the children had to draw their homes. The children came from far off rural places. Their homes usually had only one big room. The whole family did everything there. There was no bedroom at all.

I am very privileged that I could share a bedroom with my sisters. First with my older sister and later with my younger sister. I had my bedroom when both my sisters were not living with my parents anymore. The room was a so called “rondawel” meaning a round room with a thatched roof. No ceiling, only wooden beams with the grass on top! This was a bad place to sleep because I had hay fever for Africa due to the dust and grass.

In the Netherlands

My big sister and I shared a bedroom. It was so small and narrow. There were two beds, which were folded up against the walls during the daytime. At night when both were down, you could hardly open the door. The last night, before our departure, we were so excited and could not sleep. My sister and I were playing in bed, in the dark room, when suddenly my bed’s two legs gave way. I crashed on the floor, bedding and all. My parents couldn’t enter the room because the bed was in the way. We were not robust enough to pick up the bed. Finally, my father pushed the bed up against the wall from the outside of the room.

We were told:“Now, stop your play and go to sleep! Tomorrow you have to get up early for our departure to Rotterdam harbour and then off to South Africa.”

On the ship

My parents and younger sister used one cabin while my big sister and I were next doors in a small cabin. It was as big as a cupboard, hardly any space to turn around. There were only two bunk beds. My older sister slept on the top while I used the bottom one. I had to first slide out on my back before I could stand up. We could look out of the porthole and see the sea. Lucky for us the weather was good during our trip. When we had to enter Cape Town harbour a storm broke loose. We could not enter the harbour and had to sail out to the deep sea again. The waves were so huge they came up to the porthole and covered it completely at times. Very scary. We had to stay in our cabin during the storm.

As grown-up:

When I left home, after teaching from home for four years, I slept in my own bedroom in the school hostel. We were four lady teachers, each in separate bedrooms and sharing a bathroom. We were on duty twenty four hours a day just like parents look after their children.

The next move was into my own flat. It had only one bedroom. The bedroom was on the walkway side of the building. My flat was the second last one on the top floor. Near the stairs going down to the garages and parked cars. Very noisy at times especially during weekends. I changed my bedroom to the sitting-room and the sitting-room into the bedroom. I loved to watch people’s faces when I invited them into my bedroom. One day the Reverend, deacon and elderly came to visit and see how I was. They could not believe that they had to go into my bedroom. We had a good laugh and years later we were still joking about me inviting them into my bedroom.



4 responses to “Writing + Memoirs: My bedrooms”

  1. easyweimaraner Avatar

    I loved the fold up beds a friend an her sister had… you are right it can be your cave and your tent and in our imagination it was everything a kid wanted… ;o)


    1. scrapydo2.wordpress.com Avatar

      Yes, I enjoyed playing on my own. I am a loner and could play on my bed for hours. You could also close the curtains when someone kept the light on to read while you want to sleep. High paws:)


  2. HesterLeyNel Avatar

    Excellent. Thank you for inviting me into your bedroom.


    1. scrapydo2.wordpress.com Avatar

      Thanks, you were welcome! Shows how an ordinary word like bedroom trigger one’s memories.

      Liked by 1 person

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