What do they say about music? That certain songs are like a soundtrack to moments in time? To be honest, I’m not sure anyone says that, but I reckon they should. Think on it. Think of all the times you’ve heard a song and it evoked a memory, a point in time, usually a happy moment. Did it make you pause for a split second and smile? Did you get swept up by an overwhelming sense of nostalgia or affection as you recalled the place, the people in it, the thing you were doing and how wonderful it all was. Especially when you compare it to the present drudgery, of you sat at your laptop pretending interest in a zoom call about god knows what. You know exactly which is the hero of the moment — its likely not your Zoom meeting unless you are an inexplicable Zoom fiend, in which case, go back to work!

Anyway, I was similarly staring at a document when the words started to swim before my very eyes, jumbling together at first, then fading and reappearing like a poorly executed magician’s trick when like a benediction from the highest secular authority, my mobile gave a most satisfying ping. To my delight it was an alert about a video collage of our past weekend made by the ever creepy iPhone. I spent what amounts to a ridiculous amount of time finding the perfect music to accompany it before triumphantly sending it to family members for their approbation.

Then of course, absolutely nothing else would do but for me to listen to the entirety of the song featured in my rubbishly edited video. And as I did, nostalgia, that sly loving beast enveloped me in it’s warm embrace and I was transported to another time, another day, with another person. You are dying of curiosity. You want to know what song it was. I know you. Far be it for me to torture anyone, attractive though the prospect might be, so here it is — Glory Days by Bruce Springsteen. I know! Isn’t it just GLORIOUS? And no, I’m not transported to some hot summer’s day in Sydney, glorying in the company of a fit bloke on Bondi beach. Oh, hell no. Think closer to home i.e. DC and a less hot guy and more of a delightfully adorable and pukey being. I’m talking of course of my then infant son. Yes, during those less than halcyon though satisfying but sadly short months of maternity leave, Bruce Springsteen was my sleep training. When our colicky baby couldn’t/wouldn’t nap, out came Glory Days followed by Dancing in the Dark.

We danced. Friends we danced! We danced all around the nursery, we slid down the landing in joyous abandon, and university-girl flipped our hair all the way around my bedroom and back again. We danced like no one was watching, though the incompetent security folks at Nest camera have informed all users since that they were hacked, so maybe we were. Shrug. No matter, by the time Dancing in the Dark came to a close and the babyish giggles had subsided to hiccups and little yawns, my boy was ready for the sleep suit. And I was ready for my cup of tea. Bruce gave me a couple of lovely hours of cozy murder mysteries and teapots and biscuits. Not only that, he has forever given me rainbow memories spanning so many feels. Joy, tears, stress, relief, and all the feelings my baby and I bonded over in the 8 or so minutes it took us to trot in breathless glory around the top floor of the house. I can’t listen to those two songs without being transported, without that sweet squeeze of my heart, of remembering and knowing that we’ll never have that again. But it’s ok, I’ll always have these two songs, and I’ll always remember.

So, tell me — what songs evokes memories for you, dearest friend?

I write merely to satisfy an itch, a need that sometimes bubbles up within me.