Monday, 16 July 2012

Doon The Watter

Today is Fair Monday and here, Mary F. born 1905, recalls escaping her overcrowded Govan tenement home and sailing doon the watter at the Glasgow Fair.

After my father was killed at Ypres, my mother got a war widows pension. It wasn't a lot of money, but she made the best of it.

At the Glasgow Fair, Mother took the eight of us children down to Dunoon and got a house for 25 shillings for a fortnight. We'd get on the boats (the Clyde steamer) and my mother would buy two tickets - one for herself and one for one child and the rest of us would skip on.

We used to go away picnics everyday. At night walking home we'd go through hedges and pick turnips and potatoes and get the fish from the boats coming in at the pier.
Mother would send us to where they smoked the kippers and we'd get the broken ones. She could make a meal from nothing.

The last week of the holidays we'd go scouring through the shops for jam jars and then pick the raspberries and Mother would make jam and we'd have 30 or 40 pounds of jam to take home. Sugar was only about a penny a pound. The railway would deliver your hampers home for a shilling.

1 comment:

Sandra PA said...

It couldn't have been easy for your mum to raise a large family on her own back in the days without Social Security and when a trip to the doctor had to be paid for. I'd love to hear more stories on what it was like growing up back then.