New Village postscript – Part 1

Mister Glace once operated his garage from here
Mister Glace once operated his garage from here

Mister Glace, his wife, and their family are no longer seen in New Village. Mister Glace has been dead these past many years while his Curacaoan wife lives with one of their daughters. The house has been rented to one or two families, and two small commercial enterprises now exist on the ground floor where a garage once was. That garage was once a thriving business where vehicle owners from near and far brought their vehicles for service or repair. It was also a place for small talk and socializing during off-peak hours or when work was done for the day. The garage was abandoned when Mister Glace’s sons drifted off in search of other pursuits, and he decided he could no longer operate it on his own.

*

Mister Edison and his family lived on the other side of the street; he was the community tailor and barber. His services, while being regularly sought by the men of his generation, were just as keenly shunned by the younger men and boys. There were two reasons for this. First, when Mister Edison made trousers, he made them large enough for two donkeys and a cow to fit each pants leg, and the side pockets of those trousers reached knee or ankle length. The younger men reckoned that while such taste was great for men of Mister Edison’s kind, they much preferred the in-fashion, snug-fitting stuff that were sold “ready-made” in stores or sewn by younger tailors.

Mister Edison lived here with his family. He used a small, separate room to dispense his services.
Mister Edison lived here with his family. He used a small, separate room to dispense his services.

Then there was the one-type-fits-all haircut Mister Edison dished out to all his customers. There was no choice in the matter; you entered with a full head of hair and left with your hair cropped so close to the crown not even tweezers could hold them. The older folk had no problem with that type of haircut. Not so the boys. The “moff” was all the rage and they wouldn’t be caught dead in anything else. The moff was a triangular piece of hair at the front part of one’s head, with the base facing away from the forehead and the two sides tapering off to join two or three inches from the base at the apex near the forehead.

So Mister Edison was avoided like the plague by younger men and boys. Still, boys had to be careful not to annoy their parents at the wrong time because their punishment could include having their trousers made and their hair cut by the reviled Mister Edison. That punishment was considered cruel and unusual by the affected boys, who had to suffer the disdain of their peers when they wore Mister Edison’s trademark trousers or haircut.

Mister Edison is no longer among the living. His daughter and grandchildren moved out of the community several years ago and the house has been turned into a small grocery shop-cum-bar.

 

Author’s note: The preceding is an excerpt from the story, “New Village postscript”, from the novella, “New Village”, now on Amazon Kindle. 

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2 thoughts on “New Village postscript – Part 1”

    1. When you look at it like that, nothing ever changes does it? Growing up in my little community, adults would frown on almost everything associated with the young: the way we dressed, spoke, ate; our loudness, brashness, foolhardiness.

      Today, I’ve inherited some of the very traits I found unappealing so long ago in older folk. I frown on some of the clothes worn by young people, the way they speak, and eat; and, their loudness, brashness, and foolhardiness. I do find quite a bit of humor in all this, though.

      Like you said, “It’s been ever thus, and probably will be for all eternity.”

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