The Favourite Aunt, who would have been 105 today, was a fervent Social Democrat (i.e. Labour). With her modest beginnings, that was hardly surprising, and back in the 1920s and 30s it must have been an exciting time to be working for our future.
She rose from low paid jobs on the textile factory floor to close to the top of the textile workers’ union, which had its office in her home town, since that town was also the textile industry town in Sweden.
Prime Minister Ingvar Carlsson was also born there, and he started his political life at Folkets Hus. 25 years his senior, Favourite Aunt will have seemed old to him. Although I expect he was a polite young man and thought no such thoughts.
Fast forward about three decades and Ingvar had become Prime Minister. He was on a visit to his former home town and I believe they had invited some of the local stalwarts to Folkets Hus to meet him.
Favourite Aunt was running late, if running is an appropriate term for someone aged 80. So, as she steamed into the foyer of Folkets Hus, the Prime Minister and his entourage were already on their way out.
FA being who she was, didn’t hesitate, just walked up to him and – very tongue-in-cheek – said ‘hello’ and did he ‘remember working with her in the 1950s?’ (How they could even allow this, post-Palme assassination I don’t know.)
The PM didn’t bat an eyelid as he replied that of course he did. And maybe he did. Sometimes we remember stuff from the early years.
I like to think I inherited some of that ‘crazy’ from FA. Not just the fruit plates.
More or less, anyway. The morning will be spent sorting out desserts (because they matter) and putting vegetables in the oven. The rest was done days ago.
Our other main day for Christmas was yesterday, and it went well, despite – or possibly because of – lack of presents. The Resident IT Consultant went into town to pick up a pair of Cats, free of charge, which rather trumped Son’s 20% off his Clarks. So they count as almost presents. He also treated himself to a remaindered Historical Atlas, and has happily browsed through history.
Daughter went along to watch over the Cats, and managed to find a Quiz book to buy. Because we just didn’t have VERY MANY books in the house before!!
Anyway, her quiz book provided us with our Christmas Eve entertainment as we competed against each other to see who knew the least about whichever topic came up.
To keep us company over the evening grazing, Son found us an Ealing comedy about trains. And then he wanted to watch Due South, and with all of us at different points in its viewing history, we needed a ‘used’ episode. I can thoroughly recommend All the Queen’s Horses, and not just because it’s the craziest episode. It felt pretty Christmassy, what with the snow and the trains and those red Mountie uniforms. The horses. And the singing! ‘Gonna riiiiide, foreeever..!’
The Resident IT Consultant helped to finish the evening in style, as he’d missed last week’s Christmas episode of NCIS, and Son had been too busy to watch, which meant I got to watch it again. It was Santa who did it.