One of the ‘prompts’ suggested for the 100K Words in 100Days challenge is ‘Try picking a colour and writing as much as you can about it.’
I’ve chosen blue, not just because it’s my favourite colour, but also because it seems to have dominated my life. At my junior school, the ‘unofficial’ summer uniform was a blue checked dress, and in the winter we were expected to wear blue sweaters or cardigans (any shade of blue). Most kids wore navy, until my mother, who at the time owned a wool shop, knitted me a royal blue cardigan. The headteacher obviously liked it, because I was pulled out in front of the whole school one day, and she told the rest of the kids that this was the colour she wanted everyone to have! My mother had to stock more royal blue wool in her shop to supply the ensuing demand! Even forty plus years later, I used to smile when I drove past my old school and saw the kids in the playground, all with their royal blue sweaters!
When I went to high school, the uniform there was – yes, blue. Navy skirts and cardigans with white blouses in winter, and in summer our dresses were blue and white pinstripes. I was also in the Girl Guides, not just as a teenager, but for a lot of my adult life (as a leader) and again the uniform was blue.
Even now, when I’m choosing new clothes, I have to make a conscious effort to steer myself away from buying blue all the time. I admit, though, it is still the dominant colour in my wardrobe!
Apart from those practical links to the colour blue, what else does it mean to me?
Blue eyes – mine are blue, and I love men with blue eyes, too – Paul Newman’s probably being the most outstanding, and Martin Sheen has real 'blue Irish eyes'!
Blue skies always make me feel more alive than the dull, grey skies we often get here in the UK (and especially last year which was the worst ‘summer’ on record – so depressing).
Blue sea and lakes, especially the Mediterranean. The sea around the UK is often more grey than blue (reflecting those grey clouds of course!), but my photos of the Lake District and Ireland prove that we do see blue water sometimes in the lakes and seas!
And what about emotions? Blue tends to be associated with sadness – Blue Christmas, of course, and (showing my age now!) ‘Singing the Blues’ by Guy Mitchell. Maybe we’d better not mention ‘blue movies’ although I’m not sure why they’re called blue! On the plus side, blue is also associated with fidelity and loyalty, and blue furnishings in your home are said to have a calming effect.
It has occurred to me that it might be an interesting exercise to write something like this as one of your characters might write it! What colour would they choose and why?
Meantime, what colour would you choose and why?