A Penny For The Guy, Lost Traditions and Blogging

the view from the joint.

I had already scheduled my daily blog, when out of the night sky a new blog formed. 

I am currently sat in the joint at the top of the garden, it has no heat or lighting yet, but I have my hot water bottles in hand, and my hat, coat and scarf covering the rest of me.

I had forgotten it was guy Fawkes night until I started hearing the fireworks going off all around me. 

I no longer have to suffer the yearly bonfire nights when the children were small, even though I hated them, my children having fun was more important to me, so I suffered in silence. 

Tonight, after 30 years of bonfire nights, I can finally hang my retirement cap up, and watch them from the comfort of my rocking chair. At a safe enough distance, that the bangs don’t jolt my spirit out of my body. 

Fireworks are so pretty to look at, but the accompanying bangs are just too much for someone with sensory processing disorder to cope with. 

Noise cancelling headphones work up to a point, but I can actually feel the vibration right throughout my entire body, it is an extremely unpleasant feeling. 

Tonight I need not worry, I can hear the bangs from a safe enough distance that it doesn’t actually hurt, and I can see the pretty fireworks too. 

Bonfire night was a big deal when we were children. 

Halloween was barely mentioned, but the week leading up to guy Fawkes was magical. We would make an effigy of Guy Fawkes, the Guy behind it all, the one who allegedly betrayed his country, and committed treason with his failed gunpowder plot.

We would use our parents old clothes, stuffed with our mothers old laddered tights, odd socks, newspapers, and anything we could lay our hands on to make a convincing Guy.

We would steal a turnip from the farmers fields for the head, and we would carve the turnip, the same way we do pumpkins now. 

Only a turnip is one of the hardest vegetables on the planet, so this could take a while. Inside the carved turnip would be one of the candles that we always had in the house for emergencies, when the electricity went off. 

Then we would go around the neighbours houses with our ‘Guy’ in a wheelbarrow, and we would ask ‘A penny for the Guy ?’

Money was very tight in those days, you got a lot for a penny in those days. We would share the goodies out between us, then our guy would be placed on the top of the bonfire and set alight. 

We would put potatoes in the fire, covered in tin foil, and toast our bread, I had never even heard of a marshmallow in those days. 

There were no fireworks involved in my early Experiences of Bonfire night, but over the years I have watched while fireworks became readily available to all.

It is strange watching old traditions die out, and new ones forming. 

I wonder how many children waving sparklers in their hands right now, know the origins of why we celebrate this night in the UK ?

Enjoy your Guy Fawkes night, and stay safe, love Betty x

 

Author: thejointatthetopofthegarden

Hi, my name is Betty Boop (names may have been changed to avoid prosecution . I’m a 50 year grandmother of 4 little beauties and I’m a bit nuts.

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