V.E. Day May 8th 1945
I had planned to post this story when I had completed exhausted all the WWII tales I could remember. But, just like all “Best Laid Plans” life intervenes and I’ve decided to post it now.
To give you a bit of a background it’s one that I’ve presented many times as a Toastmaster, (fully garbed to resemble the heroine). I’ve submitted it to various contests and won a number of prizes, not the least of which was a Barry Manilow record! So I hope you enjoy it too.
On May the 8th 1945 I was a twelve year old girl living in London England. Like any other twelve year old I was not very impressed with my parents, especially my extroverted and well liked Mother. Frankly, she embarrassed me and never more so than on that day.
May the 8th you see was Mother’s birthday! It must have felt to her that the gods had given her the best gift ever: the end of the war, the end of the bombing, and eventually the end of rationing. What a gift! It was time to celebrate as only she knew how.
She began by commandeering the bicycle of a passing cyclist. One which I’m sure he was happy to relinquish once he saw the outfit in which Mother planned to ride. From some hidden treasure stash she had donned a large pair of bright red knickers to accompany her white blouse and just to keep it thematic she had tied a blue something or other around her waist.
Thus dressed, to everyone’s delight except mine, this very cockney Britannia rode up and down the streets of our neighbourhood announcing the wonderful news of the end of the war.
This exertion could only last so long. She eventually became tired and thirsty, and in Britain there is no better place to slake ones thirst than in the local pub.
The stop-over at the pub rather than dampening her enthusiasm filled her with even more fervour for the occasion.
Not content with her mere personal adornment she proceeded to decorate our rented row house. With broad artistic strokes and some left over paint she applied wide stripes of red, white and blue to all the surfaces on the outside of our house that she could reach. It certainly made a timely patriotic statement!
|As I recall her strokes were not as straight as I've depicted. Remember where she had been!|
But time being what it is: it marches on. Six years later when a prospective beau walked me home after a movie show I learned to overcome my embarrassment and hone my story telling skills as I proudly explained why I lived in a faded flag.