Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Pause for celebration

In days past the second of February was known as Candlemas, and folk would bring the bundles of candles they used for lighting to the church for blessing. (So much progress because of the advent of fossil fuels and electricity has made the day less well remembered). It has only been in later years that it has become more famous as “Groundhog Day.” But this weekend we remembered the date for another reason. Back in the Second World War a telegram was sent to a sister serving in an anti-aircraft battery in the United Kingdom.

Figure 1. Telegram from my father. (courtesy of Helen Bach)

And so we celebrated that event. Things have changed a great deal since those times. My mother was “laying in” at the hospital for two weeks, though, as the bill notes she did not get wine to celebrate. Rather, as my Dad was prone to mention in later years, she was fed stout to help with milk production. br>

Figure 2. Bill for the hospital stay. (Courtesy of Helen Bach)

It is snowing outside the window, as we sit in Maine remembering, six inches more since the plow came past and the forecast is that it will continue until midnight. The snow is an indicator that we will have to go out and face cold reality again soon, for while much has changed in the last decades, and the quality of life has much improved, there are still problems to face and issues to discuss. (And yes, occasionally we also still need candles).

Back soon!

1 comment:

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