I can’t actually remember a time before Ernie, it feels like I knew him forever and then one day he wasn’t there…
Ernie started school at the same time as the twins and he immediately stood out with his cheeky grin, effusive manner and sparkling personality. He was just one of those kids you noticed more than any of the others. It wasn’t that he was naughty although I do suspect that there was always high jinks when he was about. It wasn’t that he was the tallest, shortest, thinnest or fattest. He was just Ernie and he was different. He lit up the room with his giggle and people swarmed around him like butterflies to nectar.
There was always small bits of that worst torture implement known to a parent hidden in his pockets, down his socks, up his jumper – Lego. Have you ever stood on the stuff? It’s like standing on an upended plug and I’ve stood on a fair few of those over the years. He’d squirrel away the best pieces, little figures he’d made, only to produce at will in the school ground much to the amusement of his friends and to the horror of all of the adults. You never took your shoes off anywhere near Ernie…
Each summer we used to bump into Ernie, Joe and Claire in Herm, a magical place for long, lazy summer days where the sun is hotter and the sea the coldest thing known to man – He’d usually be hanging around one of the shops – they sell Lego in Herm. thank goodness they also sell shoes!
There’s a quote, I don’t know by whom. ‘The brightest stars burn the quickest’, and so it was with Ernie. When his star fell he’d taken every opportunity and had lived a life longer in his short years than most of his peers. In truth, he’d probably done better than most adults. But that’s not the point…
I’ll always remember Ernie and with the creation of Ernie’s Angels other families will benefit from his short flame searing its mark across Guernsey’s skies.
GRANNY’s GONE AWOL IN GUERNSEY came to fruition in December with some messages flying up and down the M4 between Claire and me (I was visiting family in Wales). One feels so helpless but if me scribbling some word can help then so be it.
GRANNY’S GONE AWOL IN GUERNSEY is available to pre-order on Amazon here. It is book two in a series but Amazon have kindly agreed to make BOY BRAINY, the prequel, permanently free here.
There will also be a paperback coming of the book in addition to a very special edition with drawings – needless to say they won’t be by me but by a very talented local artist (more on that soon), All profits to Ernie’s charity.