The late 50's holds many wonderful memories for me, the music, the cars, the girls and the wonderful outfits they wore, especially the full skirts puffed out with the crinolines and petticoats underneath. I had started working on the 5th floor of a large company as a mailboy. This meant that I moved office to office meeting staff and got to know the girls who worked there. At this time, the fashion craze for the girls were the full skirted dresses,skirts, shirtwaists etc. with the numerous petticoats to make the skirts stick out flouncingly as far as possible. Our building had a rather ancient elevator, operated by a charming old curmudgeon called Charlie. This elevator much to everyone's dismay took it seemed for ever to get to the main floor, it was so slow. One day I was in this contraption, going to another floor when it stopped at the 6th floor. Now this elevator wasn't very big, it couldn't hold more than 8 people max., but when it stopped, the doors opened and about 7 of the girls from the office on that floor crammed into this box! They much to my delight, were ALL wearing lovely full skirted outfits, and their crinolines swished and rustled as they pushed into the elevator, with myself shoved into a corner beside these beautiful crinolined dolls.

The immediate topic of conversation among the girls was the care and maintenance of the crinoline, what was the best sugar/water ratio to stiffen them, the pros and cons of horsehair, nylon net and taffeta etc. etc. This was sheer bliss to me, and here I was pressed up very tight against them and their voluminous petticoats, couldn't move an inch, and I prayed that this crummy old elevator would break down, somewhere mid floor and that this moment in heaven would never end! Sadly, my prayers went unanswered and eventually we stopped at the main floor and these heavenly creatures tottered out on their stiletto high heels, leaving me with an unforgettable memory. Shortly after this, a new girl started work at the office. The first time I set eyes on her she was like a dream come true. She wore a lovely full skirted dress, and with the crinolines underneath, to me, she didn't just walk, she was floating along on air in her fluffy confection of an outfit. Her name was June, and she must have loved those outfits, for she hardly ever wore a sheath style dress or skirt. Each day for me was an adventure, as I waited to see what June would be wearing that day, and she always managed to find something different, most of her paycheque must have gone on clothes and new crinolines. She wasn't the drop dead gorgeous type, but she was fair haired, some freckles, a nice cute face, the type of girl you would love to take home to Mother. One of the chaps who worked with me was the "hunk" kind of guy that
the girls really went for, dark hair, muscular and tall, his name was Gary. One day Gary and I popped into June's office and started to chat. Somehow the conversation got around to her petticoats, and eventually, she proudly showed off her multi coloured frou frou, carefully and majestically displaying and counting off each of the layers underneath her skirt. I think she must have had on four or five crinnies, each one more fancy and beautiful than the one above.

June left to get married, breaking many hearts, including mine. She came back to the office a number of years later to see the old place, and marvel at the new up-to-date automatic elevator, Charlie had been given a well deserved retirement! June hadn't changed much, still had the youthful fresh faced look, still very attractive in her own inimitable way. Still to this day, I will always remember her and her outfits, which were always a delight to behold.

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