Beth’s Grandma talked us through some key memories today, from a life lived in just two central Birmingham streets:

  • The earthquake, which rearranged the furniture, despite people sitting on it.
  • The tornado, which filled the lounge with electrical fire, burning out the TV, before moving on to destroy in adjacent streets.
  • Running through the streets during a WW II air raid, trying to find space in one of the bomb shelters, only to be turned away, and nearly tripping over an unexploded bomb.
  • The time Grandpa saved a man’s life after his leg had been wrecked by an incendiary bomb.
  • The time Grandpa — a train driver — hitched an engine to a train of bombed and burning cattle wagons and drove them out of Birmingham, with German bombers overhead, to avoid compromising the blackout.

Tough little lady, Grandma. And much as this is an economic crisis, things could be worse.

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