Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Great Aunt Ethel

Ethel smiled her way through her days. The youngest girl of eighteen children she was blessed with internal sunshine. She was wise and generous too. Not wise in a clever, well educated way but wise in the way of making good choices.
We were afraid to admire anything. It would be wrapped and in our bags as we left, with a firm hand refusing to let us return it. Now that she is gone I am extremely grateful for the china figurines of shepherdesses or ornamental plates. They remind me of her so much that I am no longer able to tell whether I like them or not. My taste is no longer of any importance. The sense of Ethel wins as she nestles in my heart.
A maiden aunt, she house kept for her brother. He remained a batchelor and they spent their days in the family house, a large Victorian building full of unused rooms. Their siblings left home and set sail to make homes elsewhere, returning with decreasing frequency. Except for her nephews. Five nephews who, like her brother cherished her. At her sister, Olives' wedding, her brother stood up to give a speech. To the consternation of the bride and groom he sallied forth on the merits of Ethel, and how the men were missing out by not picking her.

1 comment:

Claire said...

Lovely to see your blog up and running, and all the family stories cascading down