Grabbed By The Tunnocks

It's been a day for reminiscing. First of all, the morning started with a simple reminder of how good a toasted ham and cheese sandwich can be on a wintery day. Then, thanks to the utterly charming Tale of Despereaux, I got a reminder - like I needed one when I'm married to an addict - of how satisfying soup can be. As a wee sidebar to the reminiscing, the film is the best mouse-themed animated paean to soup I've ever seen and a sweet and charming family movie to boot.

But the real nostalgia buzz has just hit. Picture the scene. It's a perfectly crisp December day outside. There's not a cloud in the sky, the light is astonishing, everything looks stunning. It's my favourite kind of day. Breath is coming in whisps everywhere you look. I arrive home, ruddy-faced and just the right side of cold, to a comfy flat where I raise my cuppa to the overall thermal brilliance of the new double glazing. And then the other half places a Tunnock's Caramel by my side and suddenly I'm 12 again. They say that smell is the most powerful smell when it comes to nostalgia, but taste and sight must be up there. Just the glint of that red and gold foil and a bite of that softly yielding wafer had me back at middle school - and is probably what's prompted the sudden craving for jacket potato for lunch.

Nostalgia doesn't work on some things. Wagon Wheels, for example, which really are much smaller than they used to be (and no, it's not just because I'm, er, much, much larger than I used to be). Or Viscounts which seemed a joy back in the day but are now just sickly sweet cream on a crap biscuit base underneath rubbish milk chocolate . Do they still do Clubs? Those used to remind me of tea at my granparents and had chocolate so thick you could break a molar. The last time I came across one, it was a hideous, cheap feeling concoction. But the Tunnock's Caramel seems the same as ever.

It's not alone, of course. Jaffa Cakes can still throw me back to the late 70s, the Penguin remains a dazzling little surge of sugary happiness, and the return of the Wispa has made me a very happy bunny, but the Tunnock's wafer is as gleefully old fashioned as it always was - and long may that remain the case.

As for today's nostalgia moment, that finished with the headline. Were we the only family to play 'By The Dooleys'? Readers of, ahem, a certain age may recall The Dooleys, a family band who had a few hits in the late 70s and had a name that sounded like a euphemism for male genitals. The game then was to find songs they should have covered, for example Upside Down... by The Dooleys. Or You've Got Me Dangling On A String... by The Dooleys. Or, possibly the best one ever, You Spin Me Round... by The Dooleys. Happy days...


William Leigh said…
Are tunnocks those things in the gold and red wrapper?

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