Baby Shoes

Contributed by Barrie M

During the 2nd World War when my father was fighting in Belgium, he was billeted with a family in Aywaille and our families have stayed in touch ever since. When I was born, in 1950,their family trade being shoemaking, they sent me a gift of a pair of hand crafted baby shoes (in pink,not blue, as per Belgian custom!) These were never worn, but put away as a keepsake until, in the mid-sixties/early seventies, with the families managing to meet up for the first time since the war, they took the shoes back with them and had them copper plated. These were eventually presented back to us and have become something of a family heirloom, me now being a grandfather myself. They will obviously be passed on to my daughter, and eventually, my granddaughter, together with the story of how they came to be in our posession, a permanent record of two ordinary families' attachment which came about as a result of a cataclysmic world war. Who knows how far down the line they will be passed and the story kept alive.

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Aywaille, Belgium




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