Now, those of you who’ve seen me in real life are about to be surprised that I have any teeth left at all.

There was the most amazing sweet shop up the road from me when I was growing up. They sold sweets from big glass jars, but they also had an aisle that was a little bit like Woolworth’s pick and mix. Except it was better.

Oh, but that’s a bold statement.

Bear with me.

They had those long sour strawberry ribbons – they were covered in sugar and were stretchy and Lordy, I miss them.


They had black jacks and flying saucers, gobstoppers and cola bottles. At Kandies, they had little orange mixing bowls – the tiny ones we had in the eighties – and we used to spend all our pocket money. As soon as it was received, it was spent. I regret nothing. I might wind up getting all my teeth replaced with implants, but I don’t care. Kandies was great.

Speaking of pocket money: when I was about six, sometimes, my dad would not give me my pocket money because he was trying to teach me that employers weren’t always fair. I threatened to go on strike. I take some pride in that even now.

I have no idea if Kandies is still in operation. I like to think it is, although my childhood home has been levelled. Either way, Kandies can live on in my memory.

And it does.