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Strawberry Picnic
Emma G.


These occasions are dull for kids unless of course it is someone close you miss like a parent then it hurts bad instead. So that was when I started writing this down with my sister Emma who can't write hardly so I am helping with this and some of the words. But all the following Emma tells me often except the last bit I worked out as she couldn't explain it.

David Stevens       



When I was five Mum taught me to think through some happy dreams to drive away stormy fears so when we drifted off to sleep maybe we would dream the dream. Now I'm six and Mum's gone I have to think them myself. There's a lovely one about fairy Seraphina I like but my favourite is called 'Strawberry Picnic'.

We are on a sloping strawberry meadow with grass that is thick and tall in patches on a warm sunny afternoon. Everyone is lazy and taking it easy. Even the insects buzz lazy. It's a picnic. Grown up people are lying in the grass. Some are snacking from big baskets. Everybody has sweet strawberries picked free with free chocolate ice cream from Mr. Jolly's van on the path at the side. You can eat as much as you like in this dream.

Mr. Jackson is asleep. And Peter's dad (I don't know his last name) is playing ball with Peter and their dog is jumping about. His dog is named 'Tricks' but it might be 'Trix' I don't know.

On one side the meadow slopes down to a lovely beach where there are lots of things to do. The sea has lots of tiny islands close in that you can swim to easy and play marooned pirates and stuff. There's even buried toys you can dig up like treasure and play with. I found a wooden farmyard once with all the pieces but some parts are plastic you can tell.

On the other side of the meadow there is a little stream trickling and splashing down through some shady trees to one side. The littlest children are paddling and some have fishing nets and are trying to catch some little fish. One has a jam jar with water in it but I can't see if there is any fish in it because the jam label is still on and it's big. They all have Mums I expect.

Everything is peaceful and everybody is happy and enjoying the sunshine. We are looking forward to the evening. Down at the bottom of the hill some men are setting up a fairground. We can hear faint hammering and music in the distance. There will be rides and dodgems and there is a big wheel. You can see the big wheel. There will be toffee apples and candy floss I expect. And the apples won't be hard and sour but really soft and sweet. So will the toffee. Even the stick will be chocolate I expect.

At the top of the hill is a little castle like a hand with a tall tower like a finger. A big red and yellow and blue balloon is fixed on top of the tower and a lady glides it up and down the hill. It is sixpence to go on. She picks up a few children at a time and they go down the hill or sometimes high in the sky to see the most beautiful things. It's not my turn yet but I don't mind because everything is good and happy all the time anyway.

I look out for Mum but she's not in this dream but it's OK because everything is good and happy whatever happens. When it's my turn to go on the balloon I'll be able to see the fair properly and maybe see my Mum as well.

There's a big flash bang but it's not in the dream so it doesn't matter. I don't mind because everything is good and happy all the time anyway.

I can smell the grass and there are some flowers that are scented. Bees can smell them I think. And I can smell the candy and roast chestnuts and other things coming up the hill on a breeze like the balloon.

The sky is really blue and I am just sitting up looking round. Here come's Polly who is my best friend running up. She has a big hoop like a hoola hoop but it's not really. But we use it like one. We go and play with Peter's dog who gets excited and dashes round and round.

There's another extra big flash bang but it's not in the dream so it doesn't matter. I don't mind because everything is good and happy all the time anyway. Anyway, look, there's the balloon coming my way. The balloon lady is waving to me so it must be my turn. She even knows my name and calls out like my Mum, "Emma Dear! Emma Dear!" No, it IS my Mum who is really the balloon lady. Yes it is. I always knew it was. Mum coming to take me up in the balloon.




Emma's asleep now so I say goodbye. I wish this ceremony was one of the dull ones instead.

David Stevens