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.