very fascinating indeed….

Spring is here, there is much to celebrate, end of winter sport for one.

There are many occasions that take priority on the social calendar in spring, the most obvious perhaps is the day that stops a nation, well at least for around 3 minutes and 29seconds, give or take. How the first Tuesday in November is not a national holiday, is as hard to understand, as it is to spell diarrhoea.

I am fascinated by the women’s fashions that are paraded around the track, particularly the fancy decorated sproutings that women display on their heads in a range of colours, all chosen to complement their outfit.

The phenomena of bizarre, and weirdly shaped taffeta worn on Race Day by women needed a word, to describe them individually would take longer than Tolstoy’s War and Peace -hence the collective noun…. fascinators.

I have for many years, resisted the urge to wear said item on my head, for many a race meet. It was only recently that I succumbed to the pressure of head dress compliance. It is a sad and lonely place to be in a bustling marquee surrounded by women all wearing abstract art on their heads and they look at my natural brunette mane and they consider me to be abnormal. Well no more.

2015 was the year that I succumbed to the powers of the Race Day fascinator. I always found it a fashion accessory that looked more like something created from the contents found at the bottom of the useful box on Playschool. But hey! What do I l know about fashion?

The ladies in the shop said it was a must have… based on what exactly??? (commission). I will never know. Perhaps because my dress was electric blue and this tribal warrior head piece had a one millimetre strand of blue within its constructs. It was deemed perfect.

To think of the substantial sum that I had paid for this head decoration was shameful. But that is fashion…I have never been bothered by this marketing ploy, I had ignored it all of my life- almost. Up until the day I too decided that it was a marvellous, sensible idea to walk around with a fake exotic bird on my head.

Besides I didn’t have time to think about all of the things that I could have bought with the cost of said purchase. This was race day, I had to; frock up, heel up; and try and straighten my head up.

I felt myself walking with a distinct lean to the left. So much so, that I did a quick assessment to check for signs and symptoms of a stroke. No – all clear, I just needed to realign some unruly taffeta. I could not fully see all of the fascinator in our bedroom mirror. Perhaps height was something that I should have taken into consideration when making my purchase.

I walked out into the lounge room, where my three Son’s were lazing about. Their reaction told me everything that I needed to know in an instance. My oldest said

“Mum don’t take this the wrong way…”

Note to self, teach first born son the ways in which to communicate to women when they are attempting to pull off some crazy fashion head gear, a) don’t comment, unless asked or, b) you look beautiful.

In his defence he is ten he has never seen me dress up in such a way to go to the races before. But he continues…

“Umm…the dress I get, but – I don’t get the head thing” out of the mouths of babes (neither do I mate, neither do I).

My second born son who is 8, offered this…

“I am not sure your hat is going to really keep the sun off you” Again a most valid point. It will indeed provide me with no shelter whatsoever from the harsh UV light. This ‘hat’ has no real function, and will most likely shade parts of my face, in a way that will give me some peculiar sunburn pattern.

My third born son who is 7 looks at me, looks again at my head, thinks for a little bit. Hugs me saying

“Mummy you are so handsome” Perfect…just the look I was after.

Why had I bought a fancy, flipping, fascinator?

Once I was in the marque in my ‘racing uniform’, I quickly found myself critically analysing the fascinator-less women. It was then that I spotted a lady who had no only managed to get her orange dress to match her fascinator but, also her fake spray on tan to match both dress and fascinator as well. Now that is commitment, or indeed very fascinating.


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