The Cowley Avenue Apaches. Part one.
It is late summer in 2020, almost eighty years since those frightening couple of days in 1940. I am staying with my son and his family in North London. My memory of that time has been jogged by the game that my two grandsons are playing. It is a computer game called ‘Mine Craft’ or something similar. It is about finding a treasure trove, the boy’s love it.
I had almost forgotten those events in the early months of the war. A child’s memory will sometimes cast out the unexplainable. Anyway, our lives were full of the stories coming from London, just twenty miles away. Every night we see the red glow in the sky of the burning buildings. There is only so much that a child can store in his memory, but it will always be there waiting to be restored. So here it is coming back to me as if it had just happened.
Their game comes to an end and he starts to load it again.
” Don’t you get fed up with the same game, it’s the third time this afternoon. On a lovely day like this you should be outside, up the hill maybe”. They look at me like kids do.
“It’s so boring out there, Grand dad, anyway we have been to school and that’s outside, isn’t it”?
Kids, they have an answer for everything.
“I was never bored when I was your age, I had plenty to do, I didn’t have anything like the stuff you are playing, we made up our own games”.
I get another one of those looks and he wearily asks. “What sort of games Grand dad, hide and seek or a game of rounders perhaps, that sounds very boring to me”. He starts the game up again and off they go into the imagination of the game’s designer.