Saturday, October 9, 2010

4. Doris and Ivy

My mother’s two sisters, Doris and Ivy, were very unlike. Doris was blond, beautiful and vivacious, Ivy was dark and shy. When Doris was with the cycling act in Hollywood she was offered work in the movies because the talkies were just being made and she was not only beautiful, she had a lovely speaking voice. But grandfather refused to let her stay and, although she was over twenty one, agreed to be taken back home to England, where she was married off to the bible thumping Albert who, although good looking, was a narrow minded clerk on the local council. Sometimes, when Albert was at evening meetings, Doris would sit at her dressing table, put on her theatrical makeup and dance and sing around their little bungalow. She was so gentle and had the most beautiful smile.
Whenever I see beautiful people on the stage, acting or performing, looking so happy and talented, I often wonder what happens to them when their life of performing ends. Well, in this family there three lovely talented girls, Doris, Ivy and my mother. Doris married Albert, had three horrible little boys and never left her small bungalow in Thundersley, other than to take two weeks holiday in Scotland every year, where it rained the whole time. When Albert died, the son to whom she had given her power of attorney, had her bungalow transferred to his name and locked her out. She was moved into an old age home where she died of a broken heart. Ivy married a sweet man called Reg, who was an amputee and they had one little girl, Roma but when she was two years old Reg died of cancer leaving them literally destitute. After several live-in housekeeping jobs she married her employer, George, who was a stingy, funny old codger who thought a wife would be cheaper than a paid housekeeper. George’s house was in the same road as Doris’s so the twins were able to be close for many years. And Thelma? Well, you will hear more about her and her three girls later. They all had one thing in common. No matter how unhappy they were at any particular time, they would always greet me with a smile and a warm welcome. Wonderful, beautiful talented women who deserved so much more.

No comments:

Post a Comment