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Memories from the Kitchen.

Memories from the Kitchen.

Another story for our “Kitchen Conversations” series….


I looked up at the underside of the kitchen table. To me it was the vast underbelly of a starship unaware of my furtive presence. I scuttled forward making soft ‘whooshing’ noises, hoping against hope to avoid detection.

“Are you under there?” A pair of utterly evil legs, including slippers, had appeared. A face joined them. “Uh oh!” I thought and then, because heroes don’t tend to think such silly words, “You’re not my father!” and in that I was correct. As far as universally feared dread lords went, my mum was on the less nasty side and tended to smell of baked goods.


Despite the obvious comparisons, my sister would insist on playing a short, dustbin shaped robot and would make bleeping noises as she skidded across the kitchen floor on her knees. “The kitchen is no place to be playing.” My mum would shout and my sister and I would chuckle up our sleeves/interface ports. ‘Playing’? This was a mission ‘playing’ didn’t come into it.


We knew that the kitchen was a dangerous place and not just because of it’s ruler. There were things hissing and bubbling on the hobs, most likely unfortunate victims of previous raids, and razor sharp instruments of death that would be left like booby traps for us… On high shelves, at the back of drawers or being held out of reach in my mothers hand. She was sneaky like that. We learned what hot was after touching the hob on dares and, funnily enough, we never did it again. We learned what sharp was after finding one of my mothers weapons, playing with it, cutting a finger, crying very un-heroically and then, the biggest insult of all, the dread lord putting a plaster on the cut and gently admonishing us. file000660438175

On Sundays, my day off from saving the galaxy from a fate worse than homework, I sat and did my homework upon the dreaded star ship ‘Kitchen table’. As I pondered the great questions such as: “If Billy has 5 bananas and gives two to Jane, and then Jane gives one to a lucky horse, how many bananas does Barry have…”


… The sweet scent of roasting beef would fill the air, infuse my clothes and ‘send mi mouth a dribbling’.There would be the ‘chop chop’ of my dread lord mother dispatching the poor carrot people of Carrotonia, and the thump as scores of the strange creatures called ‘Sprouts’ were tossed into the pan, we didn’t like them very much. Behind the meteor resistant glass of the oven, Yorkshire puddings baked. golden brown swaths of batter would rise until it resembled a relief map of some alien moon. My sister and I would constantly ask my mother the immortal question of children and husbands everywhere: “When’s it ready?” Until she would stop playing her cruel, cruel games and relinquish the mighty feast.


Homework would be flung aside, the table haphazardly laid, cutlery scattered and we’d sit down to eat. Despite my sister being a small robot she was very enthusiastic about roast potatoes which would be the first point of attack. The beef and the gravy, the funny, alien things Lord Mum would call “Vegetables darling” and the soft and crisp Yorkshire puddings…


These all remind me of family time. As I sit here on the bridge of my very own star ship I can smell the beef cooking and can see the Yorkshires rising and it fills me with a feeling which is a cross between loss and love.

Of course, when I’m back on earth and not battling super aliens, we do still get together but it lacks that furious sense of concentration that we had as children, the rejection of the rest of the world and the only thing being the kitchen table and the small elbow in my side as a little robot reached for another spud.file0001725869106

© Oliver Kennett 2012

We love this story, we love the magic…thanks so much Oliver :)) Have you got a story to tell…?



  1. What a great post, and it so stirred my memories of homework at teh kitchen table,Mum cooking and family life growing up. How times have changed…teh rtip down memory lane was fabulous and I love your wriitng and turn of phrase. Cheers Di

  2. It’s a ripper isn’t it Di? So glad you enjoyed….all thanks to our friend Oliver (his turn of phrase :)) And thanks too for the vote of encouragement xx

  3. What a lovely picture of HOME and the home where the kitchen is of utmost importance.

  4. Thanks Amy…yes, we think so too! And we are so looking forward to hearing everyone’s kitchen memories…love Roni xx

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