Sunday, June 19, 2011

WWII Era Ball 2011

Last night we went to the 3rd annual WWII Era Ball in Boulder,CO.  It's a huge event held at an airport.  There were WWII fighter planes, jeeps and paratroopers.  It was like a big USO party.  They had a Frank Sinatra impersonator.  He looked more like him then he sounded though he had a great voice.  It was just super fun!

My friends and I planned for months what we would wear since they encourage everyone to come in authentic 1940's attire.  I happened to have a few dresses that would suit the era and the perfect shoes.  Some of the gals went to vintage shops for their dresses and others rented from a costume store.  I rented a sailor suit for Aaron.

The gals all gathered early at my house the day of so I could do hair and make up.  It was so much fun!  We all kept saying how it felt like we were girls again, playing hair and make up while listening to music.  After I finished getting Caren ready her daughter gasped and said she looked "just like Grandma in her wedding picture!"  Another friend brought her Grandmother's handmade hat to top off her look.  Once she saw how she looked with her hat on she said she got chills all over.  SO FUN!!

The event itself was so awesome for people watching.  Most people's outfits looked really great and then there were a few who had the wrong era.  Flappers were in the 20's and I have no idea what the belly dancers were doing there... 

When we first arrived we were immediately asked by a woman if she could take a picture of us for her daughter who owned a vintage clothing store.  Shortly after that Aaron was asked to pose with an elderly woman.  She threw her arms around Aaron and held him in such a way that we all teared up.  We all wondered what the story was there.  Did he remind her of a brother, a beau?  She told us that she was 97 so she definitely lived through it.  All night we kept speculating and romanticising about what her story could be.

To kick off the night, our flag was marched up through the center of the crowd up to the stage and we all stood together and sang our national anthem.  I was standing next to a vet who was sweet enough to take a picture with me.  Tears again!

One of the oddest/most questionable costume choices that evening were a group of folks who chose to come in German uniforms.  I don't know if they were ballsy or if they thought they were funny.  They looked...authentic to say the least.  I wondered how the vets there felt about it...  I found it to be in poor taste.  I've read too many books too recently about the atrocities of that war.

The event was so super fun for me!  I have always had a fascination about the 1940's.  Men were men and women were women.  I loved that a healthy, curvy gal like me was the "it" look.  The look was feminine and put together.  The men....well, most were away at war and so they were in uniform.  There is just nothing like a man in uniform!  Grrr baby!  The men and women of that time had so much strength and hope!  Not just in America but all over the world people were overcoming hardships with the a grace and dignity that you don't see anymore.  Everyone sacrificed whether it was through rationing, missing a loved one who was at war, or with your life.

I've always wondered if I could  have endured the things they did.  Would I have had the courage to speak out or help out people who were being round up from their homes and shipped off to camps?  Could I have survived the camps?  Would I have had the fortitude and bravery to press on at the home front while all the men in my life were fighting and dying at war?  Could I have nursed the wounded men or survive as a POW? These sort of adversaries really reveal what one is made out of.  I would like to know if I'm the kind of woman who could live solidly through something like that but I also would really rather not have to be put to that test.

Last night was so awesome because we had the amazing music (The Hot Tomatoes had us swinging all night!) the so hot men in uniform, the gorgeous gals, and the camaraderie of it all.   I had always liked to imagine being a USO performer during WWII and there I was at a fabulous USO party but with out any of the pain and horror.

It was just too, too fun!  We have all vowed to go back every year for the revelry and to remember who's shoulders we are standing on.

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