Mrs Trill’s fourth year juniors at Fareham Park School were invited to take part in a class Easter bonnet parade. We were all very excited – probably the girls were more excited than the boys. I didn’t know if I would be able to make an Easter bonnet to participate – that would be up to my mum.
Mum wasn’t really into sewing although she could sew. She wasn’t into cooking unless it was the usual meals that she prepared – they were simple and delicious. She made maths cards for the pupils in her class and she liked to do the display boards. Mum was artistic but not really into making things especially Easter bonnets.
My luck was in! My Dad was home from sea for a long weekend and he was volunteered to help me make the Easter bonnet! Dad and I are pretty much alike. We love to help others, we like to be creative, but we aren’t very good at creating with others. We like to do our own thing. So Dad made my Easter bonnet. I remember him measuring my head to cut out the circle on a piece of cardboard. I would have loved to have helped him stick on crumpled up tissue paper but it was late and I had to go to bed.
I was very excited when I woke up the next morning to see my Easter bonnet. The parade was that day. I dreamed of looking really pretty in this Easter bonnet and maybe even winning the prize. I got washed and dressed and ran downstairs for breakfast searching for the Easter bonnet as I went. Maybe Dad had it out in the garage. I did see an orange triangular prism shaped object on the dining room table. It had brick-like lines on it and looked like the roof of a house.
Mum was super organized and had put out the breakfast cereal, bowls and spoons the night before. My sister and I ate out in the kitchen. We had some nice orange bar stools with backs on them that fit comfortably under the counter in the kitchen. Whilst eating my breakfast, my Dad came downstairs. Mum was in the bathroom getting ready for work.
“Did you see your hat?” He asked. He seemed so happy that he had been able to help me with my Easter bonnet.
“No,” I replied. “Where is it?”
“It’s on the dining room table”.
I don’t know if he saw my perplexed look. I didn’t remember seeing an Easter bonnet on the dining room table.
“I made you a roof. I thought that would be a pretty good Easter hat”, my Dad said. “I just figured out how to put the chimney on it. As soon as you have finished breakfast, try it on. It should be finished with it by then”.
I gulped. A flood of emotions came over me. I was so disappointed that I didn’t have a pretty flowered Easter bonnet to wear. I was so thankful that my Dad had made me a hat. I was worried how others would react to my unique hat. I was so happy that my Dad was happy and excited about helping me make a hat.
The hat fit my head well and I was able to balance it on my head. Dad had put some orange ribbons on it so that it would stay on. Due to it’s large size I had to hold my head just so, so that it didn’t topple off my head or shift its position. Dad said that he would give me a lift to school in the car as the hat was probably a little bulky to carry to school. I grabbed my satchel and put on my coat and shoes and we were off to school.
School was just up the road. It took me about ten to fifteen minutes to walk to school depending on how fast I walked. Today, I was there in five minutes. I struggled out of the car with my satchel and reached in to grab my Easter bonnet. “Thanks so much, Dad!” I called out as I shut the door.
“My roof – my Easter bonnet – was kind of awkward to carry. The bell rang and we lined up in our classes. As our class walked in to school and to our classroom, I avoided my classmates eyes. We put our Easter bonnets on the top of the bottom cabinets, went to our desks and proceeded with our day.
The day dragged on by. I wished I was back at home and enjoying the weekend and that the Easter bonnet parade was over. Then all too soon, lunch was over, the final playtime was over and it was time to put on our Easter bonnets and parade in front of our class. I took a big gulp and decided I would wear my hat proudly. My sweet Dad had made my hat and I was proud of my Dad and his love and effort for me.
I wore the hat perfectly. It didn’t slip to one side and it didn’t fall off. Dad’s hat won a special place in my heart. Maybe others laughed and mocked but they did not know that my hat symbolized my Dad’s love for me. What better way to remember Easter and all it stood for. A gift from my father.
(First published on Spanish Views on 20th March 2018)