We all had stick-pens,and had to write in italics. Well, my writing must
have been quite neat, because for a while, I was commandeered to do the menu every day for the school dinners. I had to go across to the canteen to see the cook, Miss Burkill, with a notepad and pencil, and
write down what was on the menu for that particular day. Then I'd come back, get a piece of good paper, and write it all down in my best
hand-writing. I think it was then stuck on one of the glass doors of the classroom, facing out on to the verandah.
We can all remember the Christmas parties, and having to take your
own mug and plate with your name on .... but I just cannot remember where we ate the food. Was it the canteen?
However,I do remember the games afterwards; that was in Miss Coggan’s class, as it was a lot bigger when the folding doors were open. I loved musical chairs! Oh,what fun we had!
Can anyone remember on a school morning, going down to Miss Brown's and Miss Malone's house, and waiting for them to come out? When they did, someone would offer to take any
packages, or bags, and someone asked for the job of holding Miss Malone's Daschund's lead. She was a lovely-natured dog, called "Kleine". (For many years after,I used to think what a
strange name.."Clina!" But of course, a Daschund is German, and "Kleine" is "little" in German).
She was little and brown with a very shiny coat. I can't remember seeing her through the day, though; I suppose she stayed in the staff-room.
I have memories of the next dog that Miss Malone got; at the time I didn't recognise what breed she was ... I now know she was a Staffy. Her name was Bella,and she was brown-brindled.
Carol Ladley and I once called at the school-house (it must have been a weekend, or holidays) to see if we could take her for a walk. Miss Malone put her on her lead, and off we went! She
was a very young dog, with boundless energy ... she just about dragged us all the way up West End, until we got to Wardle's shop. Somehow, she managed to slip out of her collar, and she
was off! She jinked this way and that, with us in hot pursuit! As soon as we almost grabbed her, she was off again - she was having the time of her life and no intentions of being caught! Then it
dawned on us what trouble we'd be in if we couldn't get her back ..... this was Miss Malone's dog! Carol took off her glove and waved it about like a toy, and she seemed quite interested ...
she ran up to her, grabbed the glove, and ran off again. She bit every finger out of that glove! Just when all seemed lost, and we wouldn't be able to catch her, she came near us. We made
a grab at her, and got her! We took her back to Miss Malone, but didn't tell her we'd almost lost
her dog! She said, "Has she been good?" to which we replied, "Oh yes,Miss Malone". “Well,”
she said, “you can come any time to take her out again.” Needless to say, we never did!
A Million Housewives Every Day ....
When we came to live in Winteringham from Manchester in 1955, we had a large square box
with a very small screen; all it had was BBC 1! Of course, in those days T.V programmes didn't start until teatime (apart from "Watch with Mother at 1.30... and then it went off at 2
o'clock when it finished!)
When I went to school, it soon became apparent I was missing something. Most of the other kids had ITV, and at playtime would be charging round the playground singing the latest
advertisement jingo.... Omo washes not only clean, not only white, but bright .... Omo adds bright, bright, brightness! and....A million housewives every day pick up a tin of beans and say,
"Beans means Heinz". Obviously, I'd never seen any adverts, but there was something far more important I was missing out on .... WAGON TRAIN! Some of the kids would be Flint McCullough,
riding round on his horse (another kid with a skipping rope round him/her). They'd all be talking
about last night's episode, and re-enacting it. I couldn't join in that game, because I'd never seen it! Oh, the shame of it! .... Then there was Cheyenne; .... The Lawman .... Rifleman .... and
probably loads more of cowboys (There seemed to be more westerns on T.V. then than there ever has been since...or is it just me?)
When anyone got a "telly" in the fifties, you could always tell.... there was an "H" shaped T.V.
aerial on the chimney-pot. But when I.T.V. came out, another different-shaped aerial was added;- a long straight bar with about 5 small bars spaced evenly along the big bar. I got to be
looking up at chimney-pots all the way home, feeling very envious when the I.T.V. one was there. But in those days, you didn't question anything your parents did (not like today!) And anyway
,that old telly of our’s was bought and paid for, so we'd be stuck with it for a while yet!
Or so I thought!
One day I came home from school, and there it was! A brand new T.V. set with I.T.V. Oh, what
joy! It turned out to be "only" a rented one from "Rentaset", which you paid so much a week for, but televisions were unreliable in those days, and were always breaking down, or the valves
I honestly think what really swung it was the fact that my dad was "cowboy mad". How many
people can claim to have seen "High Noon" in 1952, and "Shane" in 1953 as soon as they came
out? When we lived at Manchester we used to go to the "pictures" 2 or 3 times a week. But I
was only 4, and looking back, I don't think those sort of films were really suitable for kids of that age. But children daren't misbehave in those days....and of course, there was always the ice
-cream lady in the interval to look forward to!
Anyway, it was a great advantage to have that telly ....... I could now join in, singing the latest adverts ....we were easily pleased those days, weren't we?