I remember we laughed a lot there too.
San Jose Wine Festival NOT a smart move either.
Half cut, dehydrated shoppers weren’t really looking for a
Oooh! I’ve just had another memory, about a cowboy boot turned into a birdhouse! But I shall stick to the plan, and bury that one again, for another day….
When you think about it, the clue was in the name really…
Chilli and wine???? What was I thinking?
So what would you think of the
California Educational Conference in LosAngeles?
Probably a better bet, right?
And that’s where my memory took me this morning.
Right back there.
I had set up my little table with the rhyme charts
and the ABC stamps.
The conference delegates – all teachers and educators – began trickling in during the break, looking at the various products on offer. It was very, very slow, nobody wanted to stop and engage, quite soul destroying actually.
Then a black lady stopped and picked up one of the handmade, handcut, mounted stamps
(I’ll say that again slowly: S T A M P S).
Guess what she said.
“Just as I expected. All white kids.”
She threw the stamp back on the table and went to move on.
You can take the girl out of London, but you just can’t take London out of the girl, can you?
“Ang on, ang on! What are you talking about ? Firstly, it’s a stamp! Where’s the colour in that? Secondly, if you took the time to actually look at the poster which accompanies the stamps, you would notice that A, the first letter in the alphabet, is a little mixed-race girl. And I know this to be true, because I modelled her after my daughter, Grace, who is mixed-race.
That’s right. Her Dad’s black.
In fact, funnily enough, so’s my son, and he is the letter U, because he has a shock of tight curls.
And Z? He’s a little Mexican kid. And how so? Because the lady who helped me finish the rhyme chart at the printers was a single mum who always had her beautiful, bashful little lad Zachary with her when she came to help me. So I dedicated the last letter of the ABC to him. And yeah, Mexican.
So don’t be laying your Racism on me! Just because I’m white, don’t make me responsible for the racism in your country!
I’m not from here, and I’m married to a black dude, so you picked the wrong one to target. ”
Well, they say in life you have to pick your battles, and that was one I decided to engage in.
She backed down so fast, probably because the older American black lady who had the table next to mine pitched in. As soon as I was done, this other stallholder kicked off,
“How dare you come in here venting your racism at innocent educators? You should be ashamed, Sister!”
And she let her have it big style.
All I wanted to do was share the knowledge that rhythm and rhyme were vital for language acquisition, and that simple verses, like Mother Goose, were key learning tools!
Once she scuttled off with her tail between her legs,
the lady next door and I introduced ourselves to each other.
I don’t know who was more surprised.
“I’m Barbara Gray”, she said.
Even more astounding :
We also shared the same birthday.
It’s a funny old life, isn’t it?
So there we are.
A little memory which came up today.
I wonder where Zachary is now.
He was such a lovely boy.
I hope you can join me on Sunday.
Lovely, talented Tina and I will be on at 2pm.
I shall have an hour of stamping and paint at 5pm.
And then at 8pm, it’s finally time to get these little Groovi plates out! Can’t wait! So many memories! More than you can imagine.
Love & hugs,