Note from the Editor: Arlene Wright
Marion's parents, Rita and Doc Hamilton owned a travelling show which performed in villages and small towns throughout the north. The following story describes their first visit to Sesekinika village. Marion performed in the show. She later became a teacher and spent three years teaching in the one-room "new village schoolhouse" mentioned in the story.
Here and There and Back Again
On a sunny 1937 day Sandy's Overseas Fun Show pulled in to Sesekinika. Little did my parents know the impact it would have on us.
The 1923 seven passenger Packard pulled its four wheel trailer up to the new school. Trunks were unloaded, curtains hung, bagpipes tuned and the big silver folding drum set up to go.
Evening came. Parents, grandparents, people from the islands arrived....The pipes and drum struck up and the show was on. There was comedy (Dad's "Paddy Casey"), music, singing-and where Dad was there was always laughter. On the artistic side he did a paper tearing act. He would fold a sheet of (in this case) the "Northern News", put it behind his back and ( back to audience, tear), then facing the audience and unfolding would hold up a ship's steering wheel. The "piece de resistance" was the table cloth. Mom would have pasted several sheets of paper together (flour and water and Mom on her knees). When this was dry, then folded for the evening show Dad would tear and explain what he was tearing as he worked. When completed Mom would hold one corner whileit would be gently opened up; The Pope's Table Cloth. In the centre seven stars reprsenting the sevenhills upon which Rome was built: in corners thecross and other symbols. There were no gimmicks! A picture of this will be added.
Before closing the show Dad would sometimes say "We hope you enjoyed yourselves tonight. If you did, please tell your friends about it....If you didn't- for goodness sake keep it to yourself!" the pipes and drum would close the show and invariably, folks would come up to talk. Mom and Dad so enjoyed this.