Uncle Ron (best) mentioned here was my dad’s cousin, son of Tom who owned the village shop.The photograph is of Tom, his shop and the bread cart. My Uncle Jack, his brother, owned the bakery and baked the bread. Auntie Sylvia ( my father’s first cousin) was Jack’s daughter. For years Ron drove the bread cart. He had two horses he called Piss Quick and Shit Quick . He was very eccentric and I found him very interesting. Uncle Ron never married and saved all his money so that once a year he could go to London and buy something special at Southerby’s. …old coins, an antique piece of furniture say or a statue. He was terribly well spoken and well read. I once had a long conversation with him about his favourite book,’ Anna Karenina’. In later years he became a postman and by 1973 is retired and was going blind. he bore this with great dignity and support given bu Auntie Dolly and her two daughters, Ann and Susan.
The dull, dark days before Xmas are closing in fast-it is only half past three PM and the light is going fast. So perhaps as well I haven’t much to write about.
After a very mild week the wind is gathering gale force and it’s getting quite cold again. Mam is out on her weekly shopping, not including petrol coupons. The country seems to be in a sorry mess and the Xmas prospect doesn’t hold much cheer in consequence. And the cause isn’t all together political-it’s the people themselves absorbed with self-seeking. They can’t buy back the time they have wasted instead of gaining an ‘O’ Level in counting their blessings and the heads of those far worse off than themselves. Still, there’s little we can do about that except to leave them to their own created misery. Mam would say ‘there’s only one day we haven’t got through yet,’ and so t’is.
To keep our own little circle Chris arrived home in the same hustle as when he left. Trains were running very late. He left it very fine –about 1.15PM , but there was mam waiting for him with his dinner all ready. A quick turn about and he managed to get to work on time thanks to a lift with one of his work –mates. When I asked him if he had enjoyed a pleasant weekend with his sister his reply was ,’Very good’- which coming from Chris was eloquent enough. He also said how very nice you have got your flat. That in itself means a whole lot to me. You must have worked very hard and now at last there is the pleasure in luxuriating –something to come home to after a hard day’s slog-a haven. The pews and Mike’s handiwork have all contributed.
And an allotment into the bargain too-I shall never get over that. ’Got all that much shifted?’ I said to Chris. ‘Aye,’ he replied,’ And all spread about.’. Two and a half ton. That’s a lot and you should really get some good results from that amount. Did you put in the sowing of broad beans as I suggested? Now’s the time –that is if you like them. Just pinch them in with your hand, just under an inch.
Later. Called to see old Bill Jacques and found him much better though still frail which is understandable because he hasn’t been out for weeks. He kept me interested talking about his days on the farm ; how many times he has driven sheep and cattle from Nuneaton with only a trained dog for help. He was out in the fields gathering wheat and hay in high summer until eleven thirty at night. I couldn’t help thinking that in this present age some folks don’t know they were born. Bill said that there was always something good in the farmer’s kitchen in those days to give away-pure fresh butter, ham, eggs and milk.
Advent Sunday saw mam and me making out our annual round of Xmas cards. We do Ron Best’s for him too so that keeps us busy. Handbell practice on Tuesday was devoted to knocking the snow off Xmas carols. We’ve got quite a busy season ahead ending with the usual Xmas Eve round unless some of us old codgers fall by the wayside!
Well, that’s it for another week. Hope things are well with you-health and good spirits-studies ticking over just as you’d wish. All our love and safe keeping as ever . Dad