This was a question Charlie asked Willy Wonka in the film Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. I decided to throw on Charlie’s red jersey and ask myself that very question. I went back along my journey through my own candy timeline and tried to think of what was the first candy I remember eating.
Now the first thing that popped into my head was Rascals. Rascals are colourful candy coated chews, similar to Skittles. I absolutely loved these sweets and choose a pink little bag, or I was spoiled with a Rascal man (a plastic man filled with Rascals!). My little self managed to finish one of these while my parents were at work and I think I got into trouble for this. Rascals disappeared and were brought back by a brand called Mister Sweet. They are delicious but unfortunately, they are not the same as the one’s that I remember munching in the 90’s.
The second candy that I thought of was a pink packet of Tumbles. Tumbles are chocolate coated raisins, peanuts, and biscuit treats made by Cadbury. Again, I clearly recall choosing the pink strip to munch on while my parents did monthly shopping. I can honestly say that my father loved these treats more than me. As a kid I loved chocolate but it was not cocoa I wanted, it was pure sugar.
Beside Rascals and Tumbles, I remember marshmallow rats and fish, red lollipops and Fizzer’s. The marshmallow rats were always too cute to eat hastily. I would admire them a little and then kiss their tiny noses; a ritual I still perform today. The rats were always tastier as the fish lacked the liquorice tail. Fizzer’s were rolled up to resemble snails and shoved all at once into my little mouth.
This is not a candy but my next favourite sweet treat was Junglevites. Junglevites are animal shaped vitamins and they taste similar to sherbet sweets. Their powdery aftertaste made “medicine time” a real treat for me. There came a day when one Junglevite vitamin was not enough and I had to sneak a few more. I knew exactly where they were kept and with the help of a chair they were all mine. I managed to finish the whole tub and my poor domestic worker found the evidence. She called my mother straight away and I was taken to our family doctor who was luckily a three-minute walk away. I cannot remember what happened at the doctor but I do remember hiding underneath my bed until my parents got home from work. I definitely got into trouble for this!
The most special candy I could remember eating was a stolen one. I must have been about four-years-old when I sneaked a Cadbury lollipop into my pocket. I was with my dad in a little spaza shop when I did this and on our way home my dad asked, “Shandre, where did you get that?”
These lollipops were something special as they made my mouth water like no other lollipop. The lollipop was toffee-like and had a rich caramel taste with a smooth chocolate centre. Sadly, I cannot find these lollipops anywhere. It was not the first candy I ate but it was the most special.
Rascals, Tumbles, marshmallow rats, Fizzer’s, Junglevites and Cadbury Eclair lollipops; and that is all I can remember…