Growing up in the 1960s was a simpler time. No one had smartphones, the school lunches were far from lavish and making up games with friends was the best form of entertainment. Here are a few of the best memories from growing up in one of the most iconic decades of the 20th Century.
Raised hemlines became a defining moment in female fashion in the ’60s as a rebellious statement against the conservative style of the decade before. Girls took to the streets showing as much leg as possible as they followed in the footsteps of their favourite celebrities. Iconic models in ‘swinging London’ such as Twiggy, would usually pair their short skirts with white tights and knee-high go-go boots to complete the iconic look.
Watching TV became a nightly routine for families across the country throughout the ’60s. As America began to take control of the television industry, everyone loved watching shows like Bewitched, Beverly Hillbillies, Bonanza, Greenacres and Milton the Monster. Australians created their own beloved shows including Homicide, Skippy the Bush Kangaroo, Mr. Squiggle and Bellbird. Classics like Four Corners and Play School had their start in the decade and are still going strong today.
In 1964, the band of the decade made their way to Australia for the first time, igniting chaos everywhere they went. The Beatles were in Australia for two weeks in total, but the country was never the same afterwards. Fans flocked to airports in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Brisbane to make sure they caught a glimpse of the famous Liverpool musicians. Those who attended the concerts recall only being able to hear the first few notes of a song before the deafening sound of screams and cheers drowned it out. The band created a level of hysteria that had never been seen before and wouldn’t be seen again until Swedish sensation ABBA visited years later.
Every Saturday girls across the country would suffer through the nightmare that was hair washing night. With no added conditioner to help smoothen the process, mothers carelessly teared combs through locks of knotted hair. Going to bed with wet hair was also an issue as handy tools like hairdryers were yet to make their name in the world.
This un-PC game would never be allowed in today’s world where kids prefer playing games on their phones rather than using their imagination. The beloved past time was one of the most popular ways children of the ’60s chose to spend their time. Inspired by the influx of American western films that played on the telly every Saturday afternoon, the game saw kids split into two teams of cowboys and Indians. Kids would dress up in jeans with a big buckle and a hanky tied over their nose and run around pointing finger guns while riding their broomstick horses. Overdramatic acting was a must as the battle had to be believable even though the cowboys always won in the end.
Getting the strap was a regular occurrence for students in the ’60s. The hard slap of a ruler across your knuckles, palms or even legs was the normal punishment for crimes as small as talking or laughing in class. Boys were generally targeted more often with some remembering getting the “cuts” at least once a day. And don’t even think about pulling your hand away in fear unless you want another hit twice as hard. The one thing that could have been considered worse than the painful canings? The obligatory glass of warm, curdled milk that sat out in the sun all morning that students were forced to drink every last drop of each day.