A little 'Dad' story.

Started by Gyppo, March 02, 2023, 10:31:49 PM

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Gyppo

The older I get the more I understand Mum's comment that I was 'Definitely your Father's son'.  Although I have my fair share of her habits/attitudes/little foibles as well.

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The Swiss are strange people.  There was one lived near us on the caravan site. Mum was friends with his English wife, Rita, and Dad got along 'well enough' with Peter.

One evening the men were sharing war stories about which service they'd been in.  Peter Brennekke mentioned that as a Swiss he was neutral so hadn't needed to join in, and in actual fact had gone home for the duration.

Dad thought that was fair enough.

Then Peter started making fun of the others for being gullible, and for being sheep led by politicians, etc.

Dad asked him, quietly, why, if Switzerland was so wonderful, he'd bothered to come back to a country he so clearly despised.

(I wasn't there, but I know Dad's 'quiet question' voice.  I bet the hair on everyone's neck stood on end and they all took a step back.)

Dad pointed out that saving your own skin was perfectly reasonable, and that he might well have done the same in the same position, but bragging abut in front of those who didn't have the choice was 'bad manners'.

Peter blustered a bit then shut up.  Dad never spoke to him again.  He was never actively rude, just treated him as if he was invisible when they met at the water tap or in other social encounters.

When we moved to our house they moved too not long after and were neighbours again, just a few houses away.

Sis played with their daughter and Mum was still friends with Rita.  A few years later Rita said she was divorcing Peter and Dad's only comment was "Took you long enough, didn't it?"

Gyppo

Mastafrank


Dad asked him, quietly, why, if Switzerland was so wonderful, he'd bothered to come back to a country he so clearly despised.


Peter struck a deep nerve 😮

The war was still very fresh on everyone's mind then..


Jo Bannister

Ireland was neutral in the war too.  A lot of Irish people weren't.  Many Irishmen joined the British armed services (which their parents had fought over independence) and Irish firemen came north to help fight the blitz in Belfast.

When I was young I thought neutrality was a reasonable position for a small nation whose actual contribution could never make much of a difference.  Now I don't.  I think you have to stand up for what you think is right, even if there's a cost to be paid.