Bertrand and Véronique have been working on a speech that Princess Elizabeth could have said on the day she was crowned as Queen Elizabeth II. Here is a speech Her Majesty could have given, instead of the actual one 🙂
Today, the Kingdom of Great Britain has just started a new part of its story.
It’s a great honor to become your Queen, I’m very proud to assume this duty.
Since childhood, I have been prepared to take over my late father’s position. He set for me an example which I shall always follow.
As you know, our country was involved in the Second World War, and the role we played in the conflict is still fresh in our memory, we went through it together. We fought, we won and we survived. We showed to the world how determinate and united we are.
Now, the task to build lies ahead of us, as Queen of United Kingdom and Head of the British Commonwealth, I promise you to promote our interests in the world, I’ll work every day and every night for my country and peace, first of all in Europe, and in the other parts of the world. Active measures will be taken to achieve that goal.
I and my family will serve the British people with fidelity, uprightness and loyalty. My husband supports me. He shares my point of view on my duties and my affection for you.
I’ll work with the Prime Minister, the government to secure justice and peace in our country, the UK, the Commonwealth and our Colonial Empire.
I’ll build contacts around the world to represent our great power, and I’ll continue to meet the heads of states, to spread the British’s influence all over the world.
Last, but not least in our series on war children, here is a letter that Anne-Marie sent to her children, who were sent away in a rush. Enjoy 🙂
My beloved children,
I thought I’d write you a few words because during your evacuation I was focused on the preparation of your journey that I didn’t have time. I hope that the sandwiches, apples and chocolate were enough to feed you. You forgot your small bag for washing things and clothes in your bedroom! I suppose the labels pinned on your coats with your name, home address, school and the host family’s address were very helpful in avoiding mistakes. I hope you will not have to use the gas mask given to you by the government.
As you know it has become too dangerous to live in London which has been the target of the German Air Force, the Luftwaffe, since September. The air force flies over every night and drops bombs. And I have to tell you that London is really not a place for children at this sad moment. Life is quite difficult. At the moment, the biggest nuisance is that we’re unable to get a bath, to haircut or to visit your grandparents without being disturbed by the raids. Nearly all the main-line and suburban stations are closed. Your school has been destroyed. But you must not worry about me and your father, my sweet children. We are alright and think a lot about you!
Your host family owns a farm in Dartmeet, Davon where raids are less likely to happen. Your cousins went to Cornwall but unfortunately they have had to split. The neighbors’ children went to Canada. It is so far away!
I hope that you will return home after a few weeks, but get ready to stay as long as London is not be safe. Enjoy the country and life on a farm. You can watch cows and understand where milk comes from, and see carrots growing in fields and eaten by wild rabbits! I am sure you will make local friends and show them that the ‘townies’ are interesting to know!
I look forward to your next letter. Dad and I are proud of you and send to you our love.
“Hi, sugar, how was your night ? I need you to be fit form for your travel
– Good morning Mum, I haven’t slept very well. Actually it was quite a nightmare I dreamed that a bomb destroyed our house and I wasn’t able to find you . I’m not sure I want to go to my cousins anymore. I’m too afraid to leave you alone in London.
– I understand why you are so upset, but it’s quite impossible for you to stay in London any longer. : Your school doesn’t work anymore, the groceries shops are nearly empty, and it’s difficult to have anything else than potatoes. With your aunt Emily and your cousins, you’ll have quiet nights, good food and the village’s school is so nice. I have to remain here because they need me in the hospital , but as soon as I can I’ll go to Emily’s.
– Yes, but who is going to help you if a bomb hurts you?
– I promise I’ll be very cautious, and I’ll be with you at Xmas Time. So you’ll be able to take care of me… Come on kid , it’s time to go to the train station !”
Aujourd’hui, c’est le tour d’Anne-Marie de nous donner son avis. Encore un autre style 🙂
My opinion about school uniforms
I am the mother of two children who are now adults. But I have an experience about school uniform because my children were in the same catholic private high school in Marseille. I remember that they would wear a uniform when a special event was held: Christmas and Easter parties, award celebrations, end-of-year celebrations…They were very proud to wear their school uniform on these occasions despite its bad quality. The jacket was made of a rough fabric, and girls and boys wore black trousers and a white blouse or shirt. I think for them it was a way to show that they belonged to a community with good values.
However I don’t believe that a mandatory uniform prevents social discrimination. School is a way of socializing for children who hail from different social classes. At school pupils get the chance to discover and get to know others pupils that are very different from them. They have to deal with that and to open their mind to other life habits. This confrontation is not only necessary but also very useful to live together in a society. If the uniform is mandatory, the children don’t compare their clothes but they compare other items such as school supplies, schoolbags, shoes, watches, hair styles…as well as parents’ profession or cars, holiday resorts/destinations and so on… For me, the most important thing is to accept the differences between people.
In my opinion the right to wear clothes that/what we want to wear is an essential liberty, particularly in France, the country of secularism.
Pour ou contre le port de l’uniforme à l’école ? La question n’est pas simple, et la réponse ne doit donc pas être courte 🙂
Uniforme, qu’entendez-vous par là ? Qu’en pensent les écoles, les parents ou les élèves ? Qu’en est-il d’un pays à l’autre ? La question est-elle totalement ringarde, ou peut-elle apporter une solution à des problèmes de société ? …
Nos “grands” élèves ont débattu du sujet de façon très animée. Aussi, j’ai pensé qu’ils devraient partager avec vous certaines de leurs réflexions (en anglais dans le texte ;))
Voici donc l’avis de Martine 🙂 Oh, et avant de vous laisser, voici quelques pancartes qui ont servi à notre débat :)Oh and please, feel free to comment !
An essay about what I think of school uniform
In my opinion, it depends on the age of the pupils .Wearing a school uniform under the age of 15 is possible ; I think it is not a problem, it could even be a very positive decision in a primary school and in a high school.
During the last holidays, I told a friend of mine about this essay in English . She said, in her childhood she was in a Protestant school and she had to wear a uniform . It was not a issuer for her, on the contrary, she noticed she made a lot of progress in those years . She didn’t know why ; she said some pupils came from the upper class of the society but it didn’t have an influence of their behavior ; they got along together and she has good memories about these classes. In my view, wearing the same clothes reduces the stress of pupils “ Ho ! my clothes are not fashionable ; it’s a shame” and so it helps pupils to be more focused on their lessons. The less pupils are stressed , but it is the same for adults, the better they can work and be concentrated.
Another argument is about belonging to the same school . At this time, many parents are divorced or separated ; it could be especially difficult to live with for many children ; and the uniform could give children a sense of belonging and so help children to go through this episode in their life.
When I was a very young child, I remember having to wear a kind of apron , a smock certainly because we used sticks of chalk to write on a slate and also we wrote on a paper with ink and a quill. I hated this smock ; first of all it was a black smock with sleeves and a little spot of pink just on the collar ; secondly, this smock opened in the back and it wasn’t practical for a little child; thirdly , the collar was a Mao-collar and it was a bit tight for my neck. Before implementing the idea of a uniform in a school, it’s important to have the opinion of pupils about the colors , the materials and the convenience of the uniform.
Although I ‘m not opposed wearing a school uniform for pupils, I think for teen agers and young adults it’s not appropriate. Teen agers want to be noticed by the opposite sex and the clothes are a way to draw people’s attention. They often don’t know much about the other sex and they have to learn to live together and to build something together.
Finally, I think it’s an issue of society ; a uniform can remind people of bad things in our history ; uniforms are used in the Army and by dictatorships ; they might represent mind control and death; on the other hand , it could be a way to give equal opportunities to each other in a society .
This might be my last post about Mother’s Day, but not the least, as Evelyne is a good writer. I hope these stories will help you reminisce some good old time with your own mom 🙂
In May or in June, Mother’s Day is celebrated all over the world. I was 5 years-old when France officially formalized it. I have few memories of those events, except once when my mother sat down to hear my “compliment” and I slipped a cushion under her feet to make her feel more at ease.
Every year we celebrated “mothers”, as my grandmother was living with us ; so we gave them a bunch of flowers from the garden as a gift, it was not in our habit to offer anything else. We ’d rather have a good meal.
I remember a special day I had with my mother. As usual, my father had gone to get some grain for his poultry. The store where he bought his grain also sold household items.
I can still see him coming back on his bike, carrying his grain and squeezing a little box under his arm. He put away his grain and brought this box into the kitchen. He handed it to my mother, telling her he had bought something that would please her.
My mother usually handled all money matters and my father would never buy anything she had not formally requested.
A little coldly she says to him: What is it? With shiny eyes, my father replied : Please open it, you will see !
We, the three children, were waiting nearby for the little box to be opened and especially watching for my mother’s reaction. She then opened the box and took out a device to cut the potatoes into French fries. My father had seen this article in the store and thought that this little tool would simplify her work. We used to eat a lot of fries with our steaks. It was small, but she could not have been more pleased with a gift (bought because it was mother’s day.)
My mother was smiling, with tears in her eyes. My father was moved and discreetly laughed. They were happy.
It was years ago, but this memory is still present in my mind and in my heart.
Today’s story takes place some decades ago, when life was definitively harder but also more simple for many families. I present Mireille and her mom 🙂
Something about my mother
When I was a young girl, my mother was a very busy woman. She had to manage a family of 6 people. She grew almost all the vegetables we ate in our garden and she made food preserves, she had a henhouse and she had to take care of it. She had to cook, to do the dishes and to wash the laundry and to clean the house, everything a woman used to do at that time and she didn’t have all the household appliances we can enjoy now. Moreover, when she had some spare time, she sewed and knitted to dress all of us.
So I can’t remember any time she had the opportunity to rest and only chat with me, except on the rare occurrence I was ill .
When I was ill , I could stay in my bedroom , and my mother brought me some herb tea , my pills , she worried if I had a high temperature . But the most important reason I have to remember this quiet time of illness , is that she came near my bed with a Charles Perrault book and , even if she had a lot of work to do , she read me one of the fairy tale which delighted my childhood .
In our series about Mother’s Day, here is one more post with a cute story. Let me introduce Véro and her special Mother’s Day 🙂
About 12 years ago, my daughters were 4 and 6, I had a wonderful surprise on a Sunday morning.
My girls came into my bedroom, to wake me up, they wouldn’t to wait for a long time, as they were so proud of themselves …
Mommy, come with us, to have breakfast …. Hurry up !
Then, in the kitchen, I saw that they had fixed breakfast, to be kind to me. As they were young, it was a great proof of love.
Then, I toast down at the table, where a bowl of cereals was waiting for me, and I only had to add some milk or yogurt.
I added milk, and began to eat, in front of my girls, so happy, enjoying their gift ..
Suddenly, I saw something very strange among my cereals and the milk … not piece of fruit, not piece of cereals but .. something like dust .. it was surprising.
So, I stared at my bowl, and I saw little things … extremely unpleasant that I was about to eat …..
What had happened ?
My girls told me the whole story : the cereals had fallen on the ground, but “no problem mommy, because we took the duspan and the brush, and put all the cereals in your bowl !”
As previously announced, I will be posting an essay a day relating a story about a mom. These have been written by our students and they are all lovely. I suppose in a way, they show a side of what it is to be a mother. And in a time when everything is changing around us, it feels like an anchor place.
I hope you’ll enjoy 🙂 Today’s story is penned by Françoise.
Nice weekends with Mum!
When I was about eighteen, I had to go and study in Paris. A big high school had accepted my application in a class where I had to prepare a competitive examination. I was quite excited and happy but… I was 400 km away from my birthplace and I had a lot of work. I could only come back home during the school holidays!
Faced with that situation, my mother decided to come to Paris and visit me every three weeks, sometimes more, between two school holidays because she wanted me not to miss family life. And it was wonderful! Dad was staying in Limoges with my sisters, and I had Mum all for myself.
She could not sleep in my room because I lived in a student accommodation, that’s why we stayed at a small hotel, and we ate in restaurants. At that time, exotic food could not be found in rural areas, so it was the opportunity to taste Asiatic food or couscous… We went to museums, to exhibitions (mainly art), to the movies, shopping of course, and sometimes to the theater (light comedies always!); when she came back home, Mum could talk a lot about Paris’ attractions! Nevertheless, I suppose she remained subdued not to stir any jealousy…
I have very nice memories of these great weekends, and I later copied Mum by taking my son with me, when he was a teenager, to visit London, or Amsterdam, or other big foreign cities not too far, during long weekends!