Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Daily Prompt:Third Rate Romance

Tell us your funniest relationship disaster story.

I am 69 years old, been married to Mr. Swiss for 47 years next February, so what do you want to hear. My funny relationship disaster stories do not exist, and if they did I would not be telling you about them here because it would be none of your business and would involve other people. I had a quick peek at the other entries up to now, not very many, and no big disasters. 

Now look at this happy couple with the baby in the arms.

Me, mum and dad

Judging by the dress it would be around 1947 I suppose. How do I know that so well? Probably because the baby is me, born December 1946, finding my way around in the world and discovering that the other two in the picture would be my mum and dad, although at that point I was only interested in food, sleep and having a couple humans around to make sure all my needs were fulfilled.

Dad was an east London boy from Stratford and mum and East London girl from Bethnal Green. In those days, some time 1939-40 they happened to meet by chance in a pub. Of course in a pub, you did not have discos in those days. Dad had a friend (mate as we cockneys say), known as Bill Monday. Now Bill Monday’s family, all four kids and parents, lived in the top floor of a house in Bethnal Green, squeezed into three rooms. Downstairs in this house was the Lay family, Three daughters and a son and the parents. My mum was the youngest daughter and I think one of the daughters had already got married and moved out. The son was at that time already a POW, captured in the first days of the war, and only returned five years later at the end of the war.

Ok so this Bill Monday and my dad decided to have a drink in the local pub in Bethnal Green on a Saturday evening and that was the fateful meeting of my dad and mum. Dad was already in uniform, being called up as it was the beginning of the war years. Mum and dad spent the evening together in the pub and somehow got around to exchanging addresses. How do I know? Mum had a suitcase full of letters from my dad which I remember as a kid. She did not actually show me the contents, but I saw a couple and most of it was obliterated by thick black lines. It was called censorship and when dad wrote his letters from his war zone, he would of course tell mum all about it. The British War ministry was not happy about that and all the post was censored. No-one was to know where dad was, although dad was actually looking after his heavy gun somewhere in Italy probably.

So mum and dad wrote to each other for five years after only having seen each other for one fateful evening in a pub in Bethnal Green. In the meanwhile the letters have all been destroyed as mum decided when she was gone, which is now more than 20 years, she did not want prying eyes to see them. Perhaps she was right. Me having developed into a blogger and writer they might have delivered food for my talents.

Anyhow the war was over, dad was somewhere off the coast of France and they sent him home. In the meanwhile my mum had met his parents, all on her own, and yes mum organised the wedding. Dad came home on Friday and on Saturday he was married. As I said mum died almost 30 years ago, but dad is now living in a care home at the age of 100 years and proudly shows his telegram from the Queen, although he never was actually a monarchist.

The story is not funny, not a disaster, but just life as it could happened. And me - I am still here to tell it.


  1. A shame your mom decided to destroy the letters. They would have made a very interesting part of your family history. Not for publishing online, just for you personally.

    1. She also had a lot of old photos, and most of them have disappeared as well.