Love, resilience and having a sense of humor…those things can’t be rationed
By Sieta Beckwith
This is my grandmother Angela, baby Uncle Steve and baby Aunty Carmel. The photo was taken in the north of England not long after WW2 finished and Angela would have been about the age I am now.
Although my grandmother is glowingly gorgeous and my aunt and uncle are round-faced and healthy-looking, the chimneys in the background evoke an image of working-class, post-war England that made me think of the hardships of the time and recovering from the awful losses of the war (luckily my Granddad survived).
This picture would have been taken during the time of rationing when petrol, bacon, butter, sugar, meat, tea, jam, biscuits, breakfast cereals, cheese, eggs, lard, milk, canned fruit, bread and clothing would have been restricted... honestly it's the lack of cheese that really kills me in that list. Though I do think the chimney in the background might have been from a cheese factory so maybe they were ok for cheese in Uttoxeter.
I almost cannot imagine how hard it would have been for Angela and Collin to have fed, clothed and educated their family of five kids in a working class town in England in the late 1940s.
In a Melbourne of plenty (especially food and clothes) in 2017, I am grateful for the strength of Angela, and of my Dad, her son, for living through such times and teaching me the importance of love, resilience and having a sense of humor…those things can’t be rationed.
Having a stylish coat and rocking a good hairdo are also important life tips I learned from this photo.
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