A nine year old boy is denied the opportunity of watching a movie and the memory remains a lifetime.
The Movie I Didn’t Watch.
“I want to go, I want to go, I want to go”. I was nine years old and I’d just been told that a movie was being shown that night in the community schoolhouse. Hating school as I did, it was no doubt the first time that I’d ever said that I wanted to go there. It was probably one of the first movies ever to be shown in the small outport of Kingwell, in remote Newfoundland and few, if any of the children had ever seen one. There was of course, one big problem and it wasn’t just my age, it was the fact that we lived so far away from the school and there were no street lights as we have today. At my age and size, it would probable take nearly an hour for me to walk home when the movie was over. My two older brothers were going, but neither cared much if I went or not as it would be their responsibility to watch over me. Kingwell was situated on Long Island in Placentia Bay and the largest wild animals were rabbits, so no worries there, but mom still wondered about my brothers wandering off somewhere and leaving me. Finally she compromised, I had a cousin who lived nearby and who was my best friend, and also a year older than me. I could go see the movie, she said, if my cousin was going but I would have to find this out. I was shy, so much so that I hesitated to go even to my cousin’s house, and I was particularly afraid of my uncle who often spoke loud and sharply. As I neared the house in the approaching darkness, I saw my uncle standing outside and my heart sank. There was no way I was going there even if it meant missing the movie.
My brothers left and I was alone with my parents but determined not to go to bed until they returned. Finally I heard them at the door, talking excitedly about the movie. My first question: Was my cousin there? As it turned out, he had been and now I was completely devastated. I had lost my one and only chance to see a movie, I was convinced that never again would such an event occur in my lifetime. My peers would have this movie to talk about forever and I was doomed to listening to it being talked about over and over again but never to know the delight of having watched it. Tears filled my eyes as I listened to my brothers telling my parents all the exciting details. The movie was “I married a Witch” and their telling of it was forever itched in my memory. Even many years later, after I had watched more movies than I would be able to remember, it still haunted me and I would find myself searching for further details of “I Married a Witch”. Eventually, I found a reference to it and read excitedly. Produced in 1942, it starred Fredric March and Veronica Lake and was billed as one of the greatest comedies of the 1940’s. Today it is available at Amazon.Com and I have pondered the idea of purchasing it, but after a lifetime of remembering the excitement that surrounded it that night and the days that followed, I doubt if the movie could ever live up to my expectations. It should perhaps, remain the movie I so much wanted to see and the one I remember best – the one I didn’t watch.
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