Putting the Find-Outers in Order
Five Run Away Together
Mr Galliano’s Circus is more of a thing than a place but I think it can count for location of the week as wherever the circus folk set it up it becomes a bustling village of brightly painted caravans and cages. Some of the caravans change over time as performers come and go but the over-all air of cheerful hustle and bustle and hard work remains. While each individual caravan is a home to a person or a family the whole field or green becomes a home to the people of the circus as they light campfires to cook on and sit around.
Let’s get one thing clear, character of the week or not, Aunt Harriet and Uncle Henry are not good people. In fact they are absolutely awful people. They take in their two nieces and nephew while their parents are away working as pioneering aviators, and when those parents disappear they turn against the children. They prevent them attending school in order that they can work the farm (Mike) and do all the cooking and cleaning and laundry (Peggy and Nora). They get slapped, shaken and scolded for the smallest of errors and sent to bed without eating despite being exceptionally hardworking. They are so bad that the children would rather fend for themselves on an island than live with them.
What’s perhaps the worst part is that these children have known happier times, and then lose their beloved parents only for their last living relatives to turn on them and punish them for being otherwise alone in the world.
They’re so awful they don’t even get illustrated!
Loved this book, and the write up here. Appreciate these articles keeping Enid’s books alive, and through them, have happily visited several of her old favourites again. Thank you. The topic of Mr Galliano’s makes me sadly reflect that no/very little mention is made of the Circus any more. Even though animals are absent and the acts are mainly human. A favourite radio presenter is a keen Circus aficionado and is always enthusiastic when one visits his town. Apart from him, their arrival to places rarely get talked about in local news or print. As a child, the Circus was such a huge event, made all the more exciting and mysterious through the Barney books and other big tent titles.
I love circuses, though I’ve only been to one a few times. I look forward to when I can take my little boy to see one.