Guest Blog from Brenda Abou El Ola

Brenda Abou El Ola shares some fashion memories from her book Never On Sunday

Green Parka at FlyingTigerSurplus“He wears his great, green Parka coat with the fur hood. He puts his arms around me and I put my face inside the coat. It smells a bit like tar, this coat. But I love it, and burrow my head inside it till my nose is on his chest. Then I smell the Brut aftershave that everyone wears. I have a bottle myself at home, just so I can smell it sometimes and think of him. The bottle itself is beautiful. It’s a tiny green thing like a wine bottle with a long neck and it has a silver label around it’s neck so you know it’s the real thing.

To be anyone right now, 1972, you have to wear Sta-Prest trousers, checked Ben Sherman shirt, Doc Martin boots and a Parka coat – if you are a boy.

The closest thing I can get to Sta-Prest trousersIf you are a girl (first you have to have a boyfriend who dresses like this) then you have to wear more or less the same clothes. My mother won’t let me have the Doc martin boots, or the Sta-Prest trousers. But she does let me have the Ben Sherman shirt; it’s red and white and I wear it with tight, narrow-legged dark jeans. On my feet I wear black shoes with stupid thick soles, and heels that match the soles. I don’t like them much because they make me too tall and when we stand to kiss, I am almost taller than him. I have to slouch a bit so that he seems taller than me.”

From “Never On Sunday” by Brenda Abou El Ola, author of “Crossing Borders” and others published by Write-Place Publishing.

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