Photo Hunt: Card(s)

This week’s Photo Hunt challenge is “Card(s)”.

The obvious choice for me is two Christmas cards sent to my grandparents and my mother during WWII. They were sent by a young Polish airman that they met during a seaside vacation near Blackpool. The airman’s name was Alojzy Dreja. He was billeted at the same hotel my grandparents were staying at, near Blackpool for his training. Since my grandparents and mother spoke no Polish and Dreja spoke little English, they had to find a common language to converse in. In those days, Latin was still taught in most schools in Europe and even my mother could hold her own in Latin… So, they all spoke Latin!

The cards are hand painted by a fellow airman and included a letter and a folded paper envelope containing a Polish Christmas wafer. The only thing missing is the envelope that everything arrived in. Although the wafer is now completely crushed, it is entirely there. They were mailed December 27, 1940 which makes them 71 years old this Christmas!

Even more interesting, Alojzy, it turns out, survived the war, remained in Britain, married, and had a family. His son is Chris Dreja of the British band, The Yardbirds. Chris was able to confirm to me that Alojza was his father and I was recently contacted by Chris’ daughter, Alojzy’s grand-daughter, for information.

Alojza Dreja on his wedding day.

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