Saturday, October 20, 2012

My childhood in the 1950s

Age 4, as an altar-boy at St Julian's church
I go back today to the fabulous 50s as I share with you a few black and white photos of my childhood, growing up in my hometown of St Julian's, in Malta. With a population of close to 8,000 people at that time, St Julian's would explode in the 1970s and even later, creating a few splintered communities known as The Gardens, Swieqi, The Village, tal-Ibragg, Paceville and Pembroke, although the heart and soul of the fishing village remains around the old Lapsi church. I was actually born not more than 200 yards from the church, where we lived at St Angelo Street, but in 1956 we moved to the Ta Giorni area, where my sister still lives in the house we all grew up in. 
Age 4, with sisters Josephine and Rosemarie, in our family garden.
St Julian's has become quite cosmopolitan now with hardly any room to expand, as properties, hotels, restaurants and apartments as well as night clubs have taken over the entire village. Still, the picturesque Spinola Bay is untouched, as fishing boats are seen dotting the inlet, and people enjoy a stroll on the promenade all the way to Balluta and Sliema, a popular trek for joggers in the early hours and everyone else in the evening hours, hoping for a cool breeze after a warm summer day.
Age 5, probably just posing for the photo.

Age 6, as a soccer mascot/player.
Soccer is a big sport in Malta, and all children learn how to play, just as American children learn baseball or softball. Each team would have a young boy as their soccer mascot, carrying the ball before the game starts, and simply posing for the group photo.
With the St Julian's soccer team, 4 of whom were uncles and cousins.

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