Thanks for the Memories

40s shoes40s bklts
A wonderful day celebrating the 1940s with music, dancing, cakes, but with eggs and sharing memories. This is the story I wrote inspired by my mother’s memories.
The Picturegoer ©

Mrs Smith puts the latest copy of the Picturegoer on top of the pile beside her bed. The cover shows a photograph of Alan Ladd who will be starring in The Great Gatsby, which will be showing soon at the Odeon. She will count the days in secret and not mention to her husband that Alan Ladd looks like her first beau, who died at the very beginning of the war.
She still remembers the goodbye kiss underneath the arch of the Odeon with her very own Alan Ladd who was going away to fight for her. She let him touch her that night and it didn’t feel bad as her mother had told her, it was thrilling.
Evelyn Smith tries to keep alive the old memories, the ones that everyone else wants to forget. After her father brought her home from the country which she couldn’t stand – all those smells and hard jobs to do on a farm that was always wet – she came home to the excitement of London and the thrill of finding herself alive each morning after the blessed bombers had gone home having dumped their best on the capital. Every day was a celebration day for those still alive.
Evelyn glances at the clock the new one in shining lavender plastic. Why did she buy it, the glaring colour? She looks at the red shoes in the cupboard and tries to lose herself in the film she’d seen about the girl with red shoes. Afterwards, Ted bought her the shoes to wear to dances. The red seems very garish now, like the plastic clock.
Today is her husband’s birthday and she must bake a cake for when he comes home. She’s used all the eggs this week so it will be eggless. In the kitchen she sifts the flour to make an eggless cake and worries if it will be good enough for her husband’s birthday. Yesterday, Doreen came round with a pinch of ginger spice for her to make it special, then said: “Now the War work’s all gone, I hear we’re just the second sex”.
Evelyn knows her husband will never be Alan Ladd and that the red shoes will never make her a dancer, or take her away somewhere. She cradles her belly and thinks about the baby that will come soon and make their home complete. In A Wonderful Life, James Stewart saw what would happen to those around him if he wasn’t alive. She has no little bell and no angel to help her through the day, instead she dreams her baby will have a wonderful life and this she hopes will make sense of the interminable peace.
Written by Denise E Gow


3 thoughts on “Thanks for the Memories

  1.   Is this you…can’t see the photo? Quote of the week by Kate Nowak “We determine whether something will be a blessing or a curse by the way we choose to see it. ”    Camille


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