We had an ‘aunty’ who was really a young work colleague of dad’s, whom our family befriended. We loved Janet dearly and she was super-indulgent of us boys.
One night she agreed to babysit us while our parents went out. We behaved appallingly, and would have tried the patience of a saint, let alone an unofficial ‘aunty’. We were supposed to be in bed, but kept getting out and being generally disruptive.
Finally, Janet decided that enough was enough. She raised her voice sharply and ordered us both to take down our pyjama trousers and lie face down on our beds. Bottoms naked, we waited for what seemed an age as she went into our parents’ bedroom, eventually returning with a belt belonging to dad.
I was first to be done and was bracing myself for a severe thrashing. But either Janet lost her nerve or decided that we’d been scared sufficiently. Whatever, the belt was dropped three times very lightly across my bare behind. It barely stung. She did the same with my brother, then ordered us to ‘make ourselves decent’ and go to bed.
We did quieten down then, somewhat chastened at the thought of Janet being strict with us. But we weren’t asleep when our parents returned, and they obviously thought Janet hadn’t made a good enough job of us.
So mum came up with the slipper, our bottoms were bared for a second time that night and, across her knee, we finally got the sound spankings our behaviour deserved.