Wayward Pinings

Today as I battled through mid-afternoon traffic, to buy, of all things, a front fastening bra (thanks buggered shoulder, well played) I found myself traversing some of my old stomping ground, and craning my neck as I zipped past 232 Lower Dandy Road (I think it was 232, near enough for the purposes of a trip down memory lane). 

Driving down that particular stretch of road got me thinking of how utterly I pined for the lovely lad who lived there – let’s call him Murray, for that was indeed his name. Probably still is. Hey Muzz. 

Let’s run down the checklist of boy-worthy-of-pining-over criteria: 

Quiet, and therefore alluringly mysterious – CHECK 

A bit left of centre, political – CHECK

Long and lanky – CHECK

Passionately angst ridden – CHECK 

Sweet, easy on the eye – CHECK

Sincere, charming, sometimes a tad socially inept – CHECK, CHECK, CHECK! 

And for 1,000,000 bonus points: 

Musician – CHECK. Musician in a band, if you don’t mind. Record deal and all. #Lightforce  

I met Murray at the church I went to back in the 1800s 1990s. Heady times, we were Pentecostal and proud, boldly evangelistic, sweetly naive, ready to take on the world and give the devil a hiding.

And we had the rock ‘n roll. No sleepy organ “church” music for us, we had brilliantly talented musos and a big warehouse in an industrial estate – and we weren’t afraid to turn the dials to 11. Good times.  

Many an hour was spent in Murray’s sparsely furnished flat, which was within walking distance of church, that place saw hours and hours of conversations, laughs, angst-y times and more I’ve surely forgotten.  

I don’t know if Muzz broke my heart (he wouldn’t have done it intentionally), and it’s so long ago now, but there was definitely, from my side, that classic young love-can-save-us-and-make-everything-sparkly idealism around my unrequited affections. 

I can remember hanging out in the lounge there, listening to Eternal Flame by The Bangles, and lots of emotion being directed towards another girl at some stage, which kinda sucked major balls. Ahh youthful pinings. Most definitely wayward. 

Muzz and I were great friends, we shared common interests and passions, and I spent a lot of time with the band he was in (HEY, it was NOT like that, we were good God-fearing people). There was a lot of philosophising about changing the world, a lot of pushing back against injustice and even the social norms of being in a big Pentecostal church in that era of over-the-top, slightly out-of-your-tree spirituality. 

I really liked the things that driving past 232 reminded me of, even though they aren’t all easy, happy memories, I remember relying on Muzz in some very low and hard times – but nevertheless they are memories that I now cherish. 

We all find our way to who we become via many and varied highways and byways. Some of us start on the straight and narrow and veer wildly in our 20s, some of us spend our classically wild years in church, trying to save the world. 

Either way, the best you can hope for is to make some friends that you still love and want to hang out with, almost 30 years later. Check. 

I haven’t seen Muzz in maybe 20 years, I heard he became a blacksmith, and that he moved back to the country, at various times. I hope he’s well. 

I wonder what he’d remember of those “halcyon days” if he drove past 232 Lower Dandy. What were his wayward pinings? I’m kind of curious about the next chapter. 

I love a good reminiscence. Thanks Muzz ❤️ 

Where’s your 232? Got any of your own wayward pinings this post has stirred up? 

Feel free to share your stories in the comments. That’s where the good stuff happens. 


Annette xx

16 thoughts on “Wayward Pinings

  1. Thank you firstly for reminding me that front fastening bras exist. I must go and buy one. Secondly, an ex-boyfriend who was a musician is definitely worth pining over. Eternal Flame is one of my favourites, I even liked the Human Nature version. For all you know there may be a song written about you Annette. I definitely have no one worth pining over 🙂 I certainly can’t compete with the romanticism of a possible blacksmith.


  2. What a lovely nostalgic romantic post Annette! Murray sure sounds like a good one. I have a few old haunts that I’ve driven past over the years with fond memories – one in North Adelaide where I lived with a mural artist and a drunken photographer. Such fun! I did have a Facebook messenging session on the weekend with a guy who I used to hook up with when I was 19. We used to park in his Mitsubishi Scorpion at the local beach, listen to Stairway to Heaven and make out. He is now a PE teacher in a remote Aboriginal reserve and one of his sons looks exactly like he did when he was 20. x


    • Karen, I love these memories!! Sounds like good times. The only thing I know about my biological father is that he was a photographer – not sure if he was drunk or not though. Thanks for sharing your reminisces.


    • So much Robyna! Great times though, I think the way I was accepted and welcomed into my first youth group really saved me from going off the rails with adoptee angst.


  3. Oh I know all these angsty emotions so well but mine are always triggered by music and photographs. Sometimes places but usually my places have new memories with them as well. Right now I am listening to Paul Weller and getting angsty over a love I had in Glasgow!


    • Style Council or solo PW, Anna? (Hope I’m remembering that correctly)
      I found an old band photo of Muzz, might pop it up on Instagram.
      I once had to get off a train because someone was wearing a past love’s scent… sob!


  4. Oh memories – precious memories. Annette, faces and places trigger mine! I’m still finding my way (I tend to go the long way round via dusty dirt tracks and the odd no through road) but I’m enjoying the journey!! Lovely post thanks.


  5. This was such a lovely trip down your memory lane, especially as until recently I used to live just off lower Dandy road! I have no idea where 232 is, but it is kind of nice to think that 20 years before I was there, you were there too. I love nostalgia a lot. When I was in the UK, I went to visit my Nanna’s old place and took photos. The woman who owned it came out, angry at first (rightly so really) but then when she heard my story, she let me in to have a look around. Oh how those memories came flooding back. The longing. Thanks for reminding me of that moment Annette. xx


    • Lower Dandy girls forever!!
      I’m a big fan of nostalgic reminiscing Sarah, and it seems everyone has a wayward pining or trip down memory lane of their own. I’m loving that people are sharing them here.
      I too have driven to my grandparents’ old homes and taken photos.
      I always either stop at the old holiday house when I’m down on the Peninsula, or go and sit on my grandparents’ grave – their eternal view is magic. So happy that my trip down Lower Dandy connected with you.


  6. Loved reading this. I can never pinpoint what will give me that jolt of nostalgia, but I love the feeling when it happens! Your front fastening bra reminded me of my first bra shopping experience- I was running to my mums car after school (year 7?) And she said, ‘We need to get you a bra’ thus followed an extremely awkward trip to Kmart. I did a lot of shrugging my shoulders and mumbling ,’I dunno’ when mum asked me if it was comfortable. Not a fun experience. Lol. X


    • So there’s good nostalgia and bad nostalgia. I have literally no memory of ever getting my first bra. None. Nothing. Must have been super traumatic!!


  7. Hi Annette! When you say lower Dandy do you mean Dandenong Road as in the one in Melbourne? That road brings up lots of memories for me too (probably everyone who’s ever lived around that area of Melbourne!). I used to go to school on Chapel St, near the Dandenong Road corner. As a senior student and prefect (cringe), I had to arrive at school early and tell students off for not wearing their hats when crossing Dandenong Road on their way to school. I can’t BELIEVE I did this, in retrospect…so embarrassing! I also remember doing plays and musicals at school, and in the breaks, heading down Chapel St together to buy sushi, hot chocolate, or rummage around the op-shops. There was plenty of angst and relationship tension between us drama students, too! Fun times x thanks for sharing your memories


    • Hi Isabel, actually these memories of mine are further out – around Moorabbin Airport.
      And I love that you were in charge of apparel infractions – some things that schools find important are all kinds of stupid!
      Thanks so much for reading and sharing your memories.


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