Sunday, February 12, 2012


I spoke of leaving the farm toward the end of 1937 and renting a couple of rooms in a big house in Wellington Street, the landlady of which had a son named (I think) Peter who was a bit of a terror.

I had been bought up for nearly 6 years very much on my own without much association with other children (I did correspondence lessons on the farm so no kindy or the like) and was by nature rather shy.

Three recollections (apart from my 6th birthday) I have while living in that house were these:

Running down the long gravel driveway by the house one day I fell and ended up with the worst gravel grazes on my kneea that one could have.  Anyone who has suffered a gravel grazewill understand what I am saying.  If I remember correctly it took several weeks for my knees to heal.

One day while playing outside I saw Peter making a small pile of dead leaves and bits of twigs right up against the side of the house.  I asked him what he was doing and he told me he was going to set fire to the house.  I remember rushing inside and up the stairs to tell mum we had to get outside as the house was going to burn down.  She of course calmed me down and told me that Peter was only teasing and I believe his mother did tell him off for doing so.  The house was built of brick so no way it could have burned down, or at least not from a small pile of leaves and twigs but I was obviously a gullible little girl and absolutely believed it could happen.

Having had to leave the farm with little more than our clothing and a few pound I had very few toys.  I think I had a rag doll and a celluloid doll and perhaps a couple of books.  One day Peter came and told me he would like to give me his old teddy bear as he was too grown up to have a teddy now which shows that underneath he was really quite a nice young lad after all.  I had that old bear until well into my 30s when he began to really fall apart and we found he had been stuffed with tiny pieces of cork which I thought quite unusual.  I for some reason had named the bear Norma.

Not huge events in one's life but still little things long remembered for various reasons.

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