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taj mahal

The TeenagerThe Teenager Agra India 1927 cont...

Her aunt reeled back, visibly shocked. This was certainly not what she had expected. She gasped, pulled up a chair and sat down close to her distressed niece.

‘All right Beatrice, now tell me all about it. I promise you won’t get into trouble.’ Aggie was very puzzled. This child had only returned a few months ago from the convent. She had hardly been let out on her own since returning home.

‘Have you got a boyfriend?’

‘Yes,’ sobbed Beatrice.

‘So tell me, have you done anything together?’

‘, Beatrice spluttered.

‘Now look me in the eye and tell me very slowly and clearly, what did you do that makes you think you are pregnant?’

The sound of the word ‘pregnant’ sent Beatrice once more into floods of tears. Her aunt was now unsure how to handle the situation as she realised what the consequences would mean. She knew the family would not tolerate any sort of scandal. She gazed searchingly into her niece’s face as she awaited the answer.

‘We h..held hands.’

‘Did you do anything else Beatrice? You must tell me.’ The aunt was beginning to lose patience. She loved this child passionately but her fear of the outcome was much greater than her love, if indeed her niece was pregnant.

‘We kissed each other. Properly. Right on the lips.’ There, it was out. A whole weight had been lifted from Beatrice’s tiny body. She already felt much better.

Quite understandably, so did the aunt. She leant over and hugged Beatrice tightly.

‘Wait here,’ she commanded. ‘You have nothing to worry about. I can assure you, you are definitely not going to have a baby. But I will need to talk to your mother. I’ll just go and fetch her.’

Beatrice obeyed her aunt. She couldn’t have moved anyway. She felt too ill.

Aggie met her sister in the kitchen. ‘Give me a large gin and tonic Nell, and then go immediately to your daughter.’

‘What is it Aggie? Did you find out what’s troubling the child?’

‘Just go Nell. Talk to her. That’s all. And while you are there, make sure you tell her the facts of life.’

So Nell went, unsure what she would find or how she would deal with it.

For some unknown reason Beatrice never saw that young man again. His army leave was suddenly curtailed and he was packed off to continue training somewhere on the North West Frontier. She was broken hearted, but not for long. A short while later her father got a new posting and the family moved from Agra to Burma.

Mum once described a typical daily menu to me. I feel it is appropriate to fit it in this section about ‘Beatrice the teenager.’

Mum's Typical Menu

Chotra Hazri
(small breakfast)

* Tea and toast brought to you in bed.

Breakfast (about 9.00a.m.)

* Porridge
* Toast, egg dish.
* Devilled kidneys, kippers, bacon. (Choice of).
* Tea/coffee


* Salad
* Fish dish always followed by curry and rice.
* A sweet of some sort. (E.g. home made mango fool).
* Tea (5.00p.m.)
* Sandwiches
* Assorted cakes, scones with jam and cream
* Home made ice cream


Something light. The cook would be sent out to purchase an Indian meal (Or cold meats and salad would be served).
Friends would drop in for supper. Coffee and drinks served for the grown-ups

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The Story of Beatrice Mary Mason. Written by F. J. Louis | Copyright © 2009