GRANDMA OF DOUBTFUL REPUTATION

Godfrey recalled  when young  hiding beets under parked cars and rocks. His most lasting one is before they moved away from the docks. Though very small he ran wild in the streets with his sister,nimbly dodging the wagons, buses and cars,and sent off daily the two would search,and fetch their Grandma out of the Pubs and Bars.

All the dockside characters were neighbors that Godfrey knew,and the stories he heard would one day influence his world view.Like old Gunnar the Finnish fisher whose accent he could scarce understand, and the mean town cop  on his corner down by the strand.There dwelt selling  spuds in the market Fat Jim who said he’d lost a leg in a place called Trafalgar,he had naked ladies tattooed on his chest.But it was Fern Strake  his Grandma Godfrey loved best..

..Fern went to all the town social events, proud in an old tattered bridesmaids dress.Godfrey’s mother was ashamed of her Ma’  in her dress and house full of cats on the hill.Singing so shrill Fern would head for the Pub everyday.Godfrey’s stern and practical mother vowed to  never end up the same way.

Noted in the past for  a ‘doubtful reputation’, Fern happily showed up wherever she pleased  with no worries or invitation, getting right into photographs; grinning in her old frock,Grandma was  a legend in this small village down by the docks.

Godfrey and Alice  would join  their Gran sneaking in the back of the hall, they enjoyed many a wedding reception and yearly fireman’s ball.Sister Alice snitched sweets and cakes, and Godfrey learned to dance from Grandma Fern Strake.Spinning him high around the dance floor laughing the pair of them flew….this was the  joy  the two social outcasts knew.

Fern Strake was  called a “derelict of doubtful reputation” Now a long forgotten legend from the past,but Godfrey owed her forever, for giving  him the freedom to dance. Bye Beatrice.

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