Just a quick peek at a picture I starred on Flicker: My Wonka Memory - 1976
A few years ago, we had to move my Granny to a nice facility to care for her needs. It was clear that she would not return to her home of 50 years. Thus we set about the task of cleaning out and selling the house. My grandparents were pack-rats, so we had to meticulously go through everything. It was a mix of happy moments, finding things that had been long forgotten, and sad moments knowing that a chapter was ending in our lives. Amidst the project, my Mom found a priceless treasure. It's a letter that I wrote to my grandparents as a child, with a brief recount of me going to see the Willy Wonka movie! The letter reads as follows (with some spelling corrections now): Dear Granny and PaPa. How is PaPa feeling? We went to Red Bird Mall and saw Willy Wonka and his Candy Mobile. He makes Peanut Oompas. I got shot in the head with a gun. Me and Daddy went to the creek and caught a turtle. -- from Brandon
The postmark is August 1976, and I remember going to see the movie that summer. One memory I have of that day was a man dressed up as Willy Wonka in the mall outside the theater. He had a cart and was passing out Wonka candies. I've been hoping to find a photo of that scene somewhere. I would assume there were other appearances like that at other theaters. Who knows. At least the memory lives on in my mind. After finding the letter, I set out to find an Oompas wrapper from 1976. Trust me, that is no small feat! Last year, I managed to find one close enough -- the 1977 wrapper displayed in the photo here with my letter. I believe the 1976 wrapper had a different design, which I'd like to find -- but this one completes the picture for me right now. This is all especially poignant to me, as my Granny passed away last year. PS -- The gun reference in the letter refers to a minor trauma that summer, when my brother's friend accidentally shot me in the back of the head with a BB gun. I think I still have a small dent in my head where the BB was lodged before going to the doctor.