Not long ago, or Little by little (1)

Not long ago, in a place not far away and directly connected to you, something like this was happening, little by little:

It’s London in 1930. Ethel has left her work as a lady’s maid; Ernest is a milkman.

Ethel and Ernest - moving in (1)
Ethel and Ernest - moving in (2)
Ethel and Ernest - moving in (3)
Ethel and Ernest - moving in (4)
Ethel and Ernest - moving in (5)

Raymond Briggs’ Ethel and Ernest is a brilliant book – very funny, very poignant.

I share it here as an example of how development happens, and how easy it is to forget the material progress we’ve made. A generation or two ago Ethel and Ernest lived below the poverty line at a time when an indoors bathroom was a luxury and a mother might bring a few lumps of coal and a couple of bottles of beer as a gift to celebrate the arrival of a baby. Were they poor? They didn’t seem to think so. Little by little, they built a life.

The story is full of revealing scenes like these as we witness the ebb and flow of prosperity and politics, of lives and relationships, over time as the world changes.

Highly recommended.

Ethel & Ernest

See also:

I'd love to hear your thoughts and recommended resources...