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Old

A Work in Progress

Posted 03-11-2008 at 15:38 by West Ender

They came at 8.45 this morning. The big silver-grey van parked outside my front garden and "Cyril Smith" parked his shiney black people-carrier behind it. He came up the drive first, with a booming, "Good morning." He was followed by his son (the plumber) and daughter-in-law (plumber's mate and tiler).

David, the son, is well-made and has his father's eyes. I had expected his wife, Laura, to be a large, perhaps a bit butch, woman but I was surprised to be greeted by a tall slim lady, with long dark hair, wearing very smart overalls and very nicely spoken.

There was no hanging about. First of all, huge dust sheets were laid in my hall, up the stairs and on the landing then, while "Cyril"...
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Passed away 25-11-09
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Old

A Smoker's Tale

Posted 28-10-2008 at 21:57 by West Ender
Updated 28-10-2008 at 23:12 by West Ender

I was a smoker for over 40 years. I started, in earnest, when I met my husband. I was 17 and, up until then, I'd had the odd drag but could take it or leave it.

I was over 60 when I gave up. I knew it was affecting my health and I realised it was going to get worse. I was a bit short of breath and I had a nasty cough, every now and then, but I thought giving up would cure all that.

My nemesis year was 2007. I'd been ill over Christmas with what I imagined was flu but I recovered and carried on working part-time, 3 days a week, which I'd done since I turned 60. In the July I took Laura to Malta for a week. It was tremendously hot and my energy levels had sunk to rock bottom but I put it down to the heat.
...
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Passed away 25-11-09
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Old

Here We Go..........(groan)

Posted 22-10-2008 at 20:17 by West Ender

I had a phone call at 5 p.m. today. It was the Plumber Senior (Cyril Smith) about the new bathroom. The plumber is due to start work on Monday morning, OK? The conversation went something like this,
Plumber Snr., "We've got a bit of a problem with the job we're doing now. We may not be able to start your job on time."
Me, "So when will you be able to start?"
Plumber Snr., "It might be a couple of days late."
Me, "So about Wednesday instead of Monday? That's not too bad."
Plumber Snr., "Yes, well I'll have to ring you on Friday to let you know. I'm really sorry but we couldn't anticipate this."
Me, "If it can't be helped there's nothing you can...
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Passed away 25-11-09
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Old

Harvey

Posted 21-10-2008 at 20:40 by West Ender

My son rang me tonight. He and his wife live on the far side of Manchester, near Oldham, so I don't see them as often as I'd like.

They've been married 10 years but have, in fact, been together for almost 20 years. There are no children. My daughter-in-law had been married before she met my son and had had a little boy, when she was only 18, who had died at 6 months old. It's complicated but they decided against having a family of their own.

My son's a Rock star. Perhaps "star" is going a bit far but he's a very competent guitarist and plays in an AC/DC tribute band which does extremely well in a semi-pro capacity. They toured Hungary last year (the lead singer is Hungarian) and, apparently, went down "a...
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Passed away 25-11-09
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Old

The Day of the Midden

Posted 20-10-2008 at 21:02 by West Ender
Updated 20-10-2008 at 21:42 by West Ender

I spent most of my spare time, in the Summers, at the nearby farm. The farmer's 2 youngest children, both girls, were good friends of mine and I was usually to be found with them.

The farmyard was a haven for a good many of the local children. At any time of day or evening youngsters would turn up, alone or in groups. A knock at the farmhouse door would elicit, "Come in," from any one of half a dozen voices inside and the visiting child or children would enter another world. There was no electricity to the farm, in those days, in fact it didn't arrive there until the early 1960s. The one room where the family ate and relaxed was lit by oil lamps and warmed by a large range where the farmer's wife did most of the cooking....
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Passed away 25-11-09
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