SCOTS
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Document 1675

Interview with Margaret Ritchie for Scottish Readers Remember Project

Author(s): N/A

Copyright holder(s): SAPPHIRE, SCOTS Project

Audio transcription

F1189 It's the twelfth of February, two thousand and nine, and I'm at the home of Margaret Ritchie in a suburb of Dunedin. What's this suburb called, Margaret?
F1192 North East Valley.
F1189 North East Valley uh-huh and it is indeed a valley and out of the window here, although it's raining, there's really quite a magnificent view. It's a lovely house and a lovely garden, Margaret. Ehm, could I begin by thanking you very much for agreeing to talk with me today about your reading.
F1192 Yeah, well I just hope I'll be use-,
F1189 [laugh] //[laugh]//
F1192 //of some use to you.// [laugh]
F1189 You will, I'm sure you will. //You've no worries//
F1192 //[laugh]//
F1189 there. Now, can we begin at the beginning with a very easy question, ehm which is, can I ask you when you were born and where you were born?
F1192 Mm well I was born on, on oh I'll give you the date, the ninth of April
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 nineteen thirty-one,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 in Thornton, Fife.
F1189 Oh right, so you're a Fifer uh-huh.
F1192 I'm a Fifer.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Uh-huh and tell me that date again.
F1192 Ninth of April, nineteen thirty-one.
F1189 Nineteen thirty-one, right so that makes you [inaudible] nine, my sums Ooh! Seventy-seven.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 [laugh] //[laugh]//
F1192 //That's right.// //Seventy-eight this year.//
F1189 //I got it right for once.// //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh]//
F1189 Oh and eh tell me about that place in Fife 'cause that is one bit of Scotland I //don't really know well.//
F1192 //Eh Thornton,// //it's a wee village, really.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 It lies between two rivers and the nearest big town is Kirkcaldy.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 And three quarters of the people don't live there. Eh it was a railway marshalling yard, //so three//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 quarters of the people that lived there, families, //all//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 worked on the railways.
F1189 Right.
F1192 Or else there was mines close so they worked on the mi-, in the mines.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And my father was an engine driver.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 So, knew a lot about trains and stuff like //that//
F1189 //Hmm.//
F1192 [?]and we were[/?] and each, every time we saw a train we thought that Dad would be driving it. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]// You were railway children, then. //[laugh]//
F1192 //Yeah.// Sort of, yeah. And then ehm went to, did all the primary schooling //there.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm
F1192 And then when it came, there was no high school so had to go, travel twenty minutes on the bus to Kirkcaldy //to the//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 high school.
F1189 So, was that, it was a small community, then?
F1192 Yeah, it was quite a small community and quite close really, they had a lot of ehm social things for the children, //and stuff like that, yeah.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm.// Yeah.
F1192 And we were all sort of on the same level, except, children, in those days miners were very poorly paid.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And so there was a wee bit of class distinction there from children that came from railway families //and//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 sounds crazy but that's how it was. 'Cause miners, they weren't as well-off, if you like to call it that mm.
F1189 Oh no, I know, I know exactly what you mean 'cause I grew up in South Ayrshire //which is also//
F1192 //Uh-huh.//
F1189 a mining area. //And eh//
F1192 //Mm mm.//
F1189 I-I'm familiar with that. //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yes.// So um then we had a, had a happy childhood there and my mother, in those days mums didn't go to work.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But then my father died of cancer in nineteen forty-two. //So//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 that left my mother to bring us up, well, I've got ehm I had a sister who sadly died last year, she was eight years older. But she went away to the Land Army so there was just my mother //and//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 my younger brother.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Aye, so //it was a big struggle.//
F1189 //So three children.//
F1192 Mm and eventually my mother went to work sort of part time.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But it was quite a difficult time.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Anyway, it's good for you [laugh].
F1189 You think a bit of hardship's good for //you?//
F1192 //Yeah.// I think //so, yeah.//
F1189 //Builds character.// //[laugh]//
F1192 //Yeah.// I think it's ehm, in later life you realise
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 how good it wa-, well, how fortunate you were compared to a lot of other //people.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 And ehm if you only had one dress, did it really matter? One for, one for Sunday school //of course.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 But you know ehm, //you don't look//
F1189 //So you don't//
F1192 back //on//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 childhood to sad times, really. You're sad losing a parent but we had a wonderful granny.
F1189 Did you? //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yes.// Who helped, my mother's mother, who helped us a lot.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Used to knit all our jerseys and socks and, and then I had a a maiden aunt who lived in London but she was really good to us too. //You know ehm,//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 used to have us down there for holidays and stuff like that so we were fortunate.
F1189 Well you were lucky then you got holidays. //Ehm.//
F1192 //Mm oh yes.// And then before my father died, well I was eight when he died, but we used to go on holidays every //year.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Because it was free on the train so we used to go to Scarborough and absolutely //freeze//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 in the middle of //June with your//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 eh overcoats on on the beach.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 My husband couldn't believe it when I was sitting here, coats and hats on on the beach.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mm so we had a lot of happy holidays, we usually went to Scarborough and Whitley Bay these were the places to go.
F1189 That would be quite exotic actually //in those days.//
F1192 //Oh it was.// Yeah.
F1189 To go //that far.//
F1192 //You know what it's like on the North Sea, it's// //just//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 so cold.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 But I mean, it was a, it was nice, we did have sunny days at times mm.
F1189 Did you go along the Fife coast as well //for your holidays?//
F1192 //Yeah, we've been there a// lot and then my sister, when she went to the Land Army she was based in Anstruther
F1189 Mm.
F1192 which is on a, and we used to go along there to visit her occasionally.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 So we knew Crail and all these beautiful, along there.
F1189 Yes.
F1192 Largo and... //So we,//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 with her being there, that took us there, //you know?//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 And um 'course wartime came and ehm things were different //but//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 you know we were... Scotland really, where we were never really suffered that much, I think there was one I can remember the Glasgow Blitz because we could hear it and //sixty miles away.//
F1189 //Could you?// //Could you really hear it?//
F1192 //You could hear the// //bombers and we//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 could see the //searchlight.//
F1189 //Mmhm// //mmhm mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 //So that was pretty scary.// And then I think, no, there was one bomb dropped on the Forth bridge.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But that was of course looking for Rosyth, //that was meant//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 for Rosyth, where the ships were.
F1189 Mmhm //mmhm.//
F1192 //Mm.// But I suppose we had a safe war because we had evacuees came from London and all over England. Mm.
F1189 I was about to ask you that, I mean, it's unlikely you would be evacuated but you might have got evacuees.
F1192 We had ehm children there
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and the interesting thing was eh that some of them came from Edinburgh //as well//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 although they weren't too worried about the war though, these kids that came from London. But all the children that came were Catholics.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And that to us, where we lived, it was, it wa-, it was a Presbyte-, this sounds crazy but it was a Presbyterian village.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And, yes, of course there was no Catholic church but there was one in Kirkcaldy but the nuns used to come. You know, we had to go out the room while they had their lesson in the morning. //So ehm.//
F1189 //Oh right// uh-huh. So you-your mother didn't take in evacuees //herself?//
F1192 //No she didn't// because she didn't have enough room but we had them just lived up //behind us.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 A lot of people that just had one child took them. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Some of them were poor wee souls that were, you know, they were from the slums a lot of them.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And ehm a lot of them never went back.
F1189 Mmhm, really?
F1192 Yeah. //They stayed there ehm.//
F1189 //They liked it there uh-huh.//
F1192 There was a couple of single ladies that took them in. //And//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 they just stayed there, they just, I don't know if they legally //adopted them or what they did, but//
F1189 //Mm mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 Apparently they weren't wanted back where they came from. Mm.
F1189 Now, those children, would they have been from the likes of eh Dundee or would they be from the East Coast or did they come from as far away as //Glasgow?//
F1192 //No.// No, the- they just, London was, it was mainly from there and they //did come from Edinburgh.//
F1189 //Oh they came from London?// //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 //Well I think we might have had some// from //Glasgow as well.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 Yeah. 'Cause Glasgow was bombed //badly, Clydebank.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.// Mmhm. Now.
F1192 But it was so sad, I can remember when they arrived 'cause they all had labels on them with their names on. And then, just a wee bag, you know, they didn't have much. So we felt really well off 'cause of them when they arrived.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 It was good for us.
F1189 Right. //Yeah,//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 everything's relative isn't //it? Uh-huh uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 //It is, yeah, so.//
F1189 Now your house in, in Thornton then, what, what was that like? Did you stay there throughout your childhood?
F1192 Yeah, I was born eh in one house and then we shifted down to the next street really. And then I lived there until I came here.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Although I was away nursing, //so//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 Well, I left, I was there 'til I was sixteen. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mm.// Now, were your mother and father readers at all?
F1192 Sorry?
F1189 Were they readers, your mother and father?
F1192 My father was.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Mm my mother wasn't, she was one of these... She didn't pass it on to me, she was one of those cleaning ladies and she was always busy cleaning //and washing and//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm// mm.
F1192 mm and she read the odd magazine.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But she wasn't... But Dad, he was.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Can you recall the kind of thing that she might have read? What magazines that might have, those
F1192 Yeah, well, I can //remember//
F1189 //Ehm.//
F1192 The People's Friend, that was one my granny read.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And when, she used to, at one time older people used to do the, I think there's maybe some, not us but there's some that still do it, they had a lie down after their lunch,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 in the middle of the day. And you weren't allowed in Granny's room 'cause she went and lay on the top of her bed with her People's Friend.
F1189 Mmhm. //[laugh]//
F1192 //And no interruptions [laugh].// //Yeah.//
F1189 //Did you ever read// The People's Friend yourself, //Margaret?//
F1192 //And I've// I, I buy the odd one. //The f-,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 the front page, if it's maybe got a photo of Fife or
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Glagow, or Edinburgh or
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 somewhere I know. I don't buy them regularly.
F1189 Do you buy them here?
F1192 You can buy them //here.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 But they're, they're probably about three weeks old //or something like that.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 I don't think a lot of people buy //them.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 But ehm there's never too many in the newsagent's.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But if I see one I think oh and Ron'll say 'Why don't you buy this?' //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh] Is// is that in the local newsagent here
F1192 Eh //you can buy them//
F1189 //you get them?//
F1192 at the supermarket.
F1189 Really? //[laugh]//
F1192 //Yeah, down at the New World,// //yeah, they've got all the magazines.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 And English Woman's Weekly and stuff like //that.//
F1189 //Mmhm.// //Oh.//
F1192 //Ehm.//
F1189 I'll need to look out for them, ah. And what about your dad, what did he like to read?
F1192 Oh well, he was interested in history.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And also, a lot to do with railways and then during the war we had a lot of cousins
F1189 Mm.
F1192 that were at the war.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And he was always really interested in reading about //that and//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 kept in touch with that.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And he was a golfer too so we had a lot of golf books in the house.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And ehm. But he had books of the First World War. He-, he didn't go to the First World War because the quota was if you were a driver they used to drive troup trains so they were, had reserved
F1189 Mm.
F1192 job.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And ehm he, he used to buy those war illustrateds every week.
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 And then he had them bound.
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 And he used to read them a lot and my brother did too. I wasn't as interested in that but then we had cousins that were killed and, you know, he was always reading about the different battles //and...//
F1189 //Mm.// //So that, that,//
F1192 //So there was a lot of that.//
F1189 that was serious stuff then? //Ehm.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Do you remember him, your dad, or your brother ever reading any of the cartoons of the First World War?
F1192 Yeah, not, no I don't remember that too much but my brother, he was, he always had comics.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But they, you know, they used to swap //and they//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 we didn't buy many but, I remember there was The Rover and The Hotspur, The Beano,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 The Dandy,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and then there was one called The Girl's Own. //I used to get,//
F1189 //Did you get that?//
F1192 I used to get one occasionally //if I was//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 I think they were about thrupence, //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 which was a lot of money.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Did you get pocket money then, eh Margaret?
F1192 No, we didn't get //pocket money.//
F1189 //Mm mm mm.//
F1192 If you wanted to go to the pictures, well you just had to, if Mum had enough money you could go, yeah. And um it was one of these Thornton itself didn't have a big cinema, it //just//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 was a town hall and //you know,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 sometimes it broke down //and all the stuff like that so.//
F1189 //Mmhm [laugh].//
F1192 But you still liked to go.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm. Do you remember any of the, the films that you saw during the war?
F1192 There was a lot of cowboy ones in those days.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I can't really remember films too well. I remember oh a few books, I remember having ehm Grimm's Fairytales, we read them.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And I think we had a Rupert book as well, they were fairly...
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 It just had a si- was it a sixtieth anniversary or something? //Recently.//
F1189 //No.// It would be at least that. //I would think, yes uh-huh mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 //Yeah, it might be more than that, mm.//
F1189 Now, Rupert was in the, the Daily Express. //Ehm.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Do you remember any newspapers coming into your //house?//
F1192 //Yeah, we used to,// well um we got the Daily Express, we got that every day and then in Kirkcaldy they put out weekly the Fife Free Press.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 We got that. And then, well later my Mum started buying the the Courier which was actually a Fife and Dundee //paper.//
F1189 //Mm.// //Mmhm.//
F1192 //Mm.// But it was a lot of Fife news in it. And then there was a journal, the Fife Journal, it came out on a Friday.
F1189 Mmhm //mmhm.//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 So, so lots of newspapers //in your house then, mm.//
F1192 //There was a lot of newspapers,// yeah, and I always bought a Sunday paper.
F1189 Oh which one?
F1192 Well, the Sunday Post mainly, yeah.
F1189 [laugh]
F1192 And it had all the comics, Oor Wullie and ehm The Broons.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And my sister, she used to send The Broons book to my kids, of course they couldn't read it. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 `What does this mean, Mum?' [laugh] It was quite funny. //They used//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 to try and read it out to me. Hilarious. [laugh]
F1189 In New Zealand accent. //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh]// Er Ron, he was good at it because ehm he can't claim being a Scot //but he had//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Scots grandparents.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and he's, one of his grandfathers lived with him
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 when the Granny died.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 He was from Kilmarnock.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 and he knew a lot of Scottish words //and//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 he used to get up and eat porridge with his grandad,
F1189 [laugh]
F1192 pease brose.
F1189 [laugh]
F1192 But he remembered him really well.
F1189 Mmhm mm yes.
F1192 And his mother used a lot of Scottish words //too.//
F1189 //Mm.// //Mmhm.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Well, the, the Broons, of course, and Oor Wullie are sort of iconically Scottish, //aren't they?//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Ehm. And it's interesting that you did get the, the Sunday Post, //there ehm.//
F1192 //Mmhm mm.//
F1189 Was there any competition in your house for, for the comic papers amongst //you and your brother?//
F1192 //They used to have ehm// I think they had crosswords in that //for//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 kids.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And, but it used to be a fight who was going to get the page with the Broons and Oor Wullie on. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 And then at Christmas time, if we were lucky we would get a book and then my sister used to send them to me here.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And, for... how many years? About thirty years my mother sent me the Fife Free Press and the Sunday Post. But then postage became too expensive so I told her. She sent them here to me as well. //[inaudible]//
F1189 //For thirty years?// //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 And did you keep them? //Or did you read them and//
F1192 //Oh some of them, no,// I threw them, well nobody else was very interested.
F1189 Uh-huh uh-huh you didn't pass them on to //other people?//
F1192 //Oh yeah, I used to pass them on// //to Scottish people I knew that mm,//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 let them have a read of them.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 This eh well after I'd been here quite a number of years I got a neighbour who was, she was from Galston //in Ayrshire.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 And I used to pass them on to Joan. Still friendly with her. Well, she's ten years younger //than me.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 But it was quite good.
F1189 Mmhm and what did you think of the likes of the Sunday Post once you'd been here for, for a wee while?
F1192 Well, I thought it was wee bit rubbishy in places. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 Eh but I hadn't noticed that, of course we didn't read much else of it, oh there used to be readers' letters, //so I can remember them.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 And that was all sort of sob stuff really.
F1189 Mmhm, yeah.
F1192 There was nothing good about it.
F1189 [laugh]
F1192 But that was what newspapers were like.
F1189 Mm //mmhm.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Now, in your house I, the, I get the picture of, of quite a culture of reading because you had lots of newspapers //and things//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 like that. Did you have a bookshelf in your house?
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Had two bookshelves.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And we had all these, these war books took up the half of it and then he had, it wasn't only that and then there was ehm the Spanish Civil War,
F1189 Mm.
F1192 cause when, Mum used to... there was this lady that came and collected for the Spanish orphans.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 I think it was a shilling a week or some- she she has this wee book that the lady wrote in. So we knew quite a bit about the Spanish //Civil War.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 And father had books on that //too mmhm.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.// Ehm, now you said that Thornton was a Presbyterian town.
F1192 Yes, yeah, well we to- until these evacuee children //came,//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 and then there was one other, this is terrible really //but we called them//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 the Catholic family. //And he//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 was the detective that had come from Glasgow and he was a detective or police.
F1189 Uh-huh uh-huh.
F1192 So they were the Catholics.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 Which sounds terrible really.
F1189 But they'd be different. //Both//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 because they were Glaswegian and //th-there's a different background uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah, that's right mm.//
F1189 So I take it there was a Church of Scotland in, in //the village?//
F1192 //Yeah, it was.// //Yeah, yeah.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.// So was there a Bible in your house?
F1192 Yeah, and we, and we, my father had the family Bible because he was the oldest
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 of eight children and it always went to the eldest //son.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 But I don't, I think my brother's got it, I'm not sure, I just had one brother. But there was cousins that were older than him so I don't really know where it went mm.
F1189 We-were your family churchgoers then?
F1192 Eh, Mum was. Dad used to go to communion which was about once every six weeks and get all dressed up in his bowler hat and everything. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 But Mum, she went quite regular.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And we all went to Sunday school
F1189 Mm.
F1192 and ehm Bible class
F1189 Mmhm mmhm. //Now Sunday//
F1192 //then.//
F1189 school is a favourite place actually for, for books because lots of people got //Sunday school prizes.//
F1192 //And that was something I've// brought with me, my Bible. //But it's, and it's//
F1189 //Oh did you? Uh-huh.// Mmhm.
F1192 Ron has mended it a few //times.//
F1189 //Mm// //mmhm.//
F1192 //I've// still got it through here and I got it for regular //attendance//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 at the Sunday //school mm.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 And the, the back of it was all torn //and//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Ron mended it all.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 He's quite good at mending books. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]// So it's been well used then?
F1192 Oh it has, yeah. Well, we used it in, then when you went to high school you //used them too, which,//
F1189 //Mm mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 used to have hymns //every morning.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 But I wouldn't have called us a strongly religious //family.//
F1189 //Mm// mmhm.
F1192 But Mum sort of kept it up.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 I think Mum's are usually the ones that do that. //Mm.//
F1189 //That's true.// Do you remember any other books you got as, as prizes //at Sunday school?//
F1192 //Eh yeah,// I got some at school. Oh I found one I was going to show you, it's not, it's called "Maid Marian". //And it was from the//
F1189 //Oh right.//
F1192 Sunday school //as well.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 I found it the other day, mm. Find it in a minute. //I thought I'd brought//
F1189 //Okay, that's great.//
F1192 it through here.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And I'll show you my Bible as well //so,//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 because when my eldest girl went to Sunday school //eh//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 sorry, went to high //school she//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 claimed this Bible and she's got her name
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 inside the front page as //well.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 But it was really mine, it tells you the date. //It was//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 nineteen-forties, when I got it.
F1189 Oh, it's a good age then, definitely.
F1192 But then when you get to ehm early //teenage//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 you don't want to go to church, well that's usually what happens.
F1189 Mmhm, it is. //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh]// It happens with my family too, well my, when it came to my fifth child, //Grant,//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 ehm. By the time he was six he didn't want to go to Sunday //school.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 He was bored
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 with Sunday school
F1189 Mm.
F1192 and didn't like the look of the minister. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]// //Well [laugh].//
F1192 //`But I could go,// I could go to the Christmas party.'
F1189 Uh-huh uh-huh. //Ah well [laugh] no, no, you don't//
F1192 //No way [laugh].//
F1189 get one without the other [laugh].
F1192 So.
F1189 Now, your school in Thornton, that would be quite a small school.
F1192 It was a wee school. //Er//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 I think it's a health clinic or //something now, it was//
F1189 //Mmhm mm.//
F1192 old old, it was stone.
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 Schools were all stone.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 There was one school that you could just, here they call it //intermediate, be-before//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 you went to High school, you just had two years.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 It was actually in our street.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 It's, it was a lovely little stone building but freezing cold.
F1189 Mm mmhm.
F1192 And then, from five 'til, I think it was probably ten, you went to the other //school//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 that was further away.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then came back and then you went to high school from there.
F1189 Do you remember any of the, the books or the stories that you, that you got at school?
F1192 Yes, I can remember ehm I was trying to think of the... I wrote some down.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Oh yeah, I wrote down these comics in case I didn't remember.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But we had a, we, another thing my father was interested in was Robbie Burns.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 So we had a lot of Burns books and he, he was quite good at reciting poetry, he used to, and there was ehm. Tam O'Shanter, //he could//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 recite a whole lot of that, so we were quite interested in Robbie Burns.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Some Scots weren't but //we were//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 because of Dad.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And he used to go to, you know, Burns' supper and
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 address the Haggis //and//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 stuff like that.
F1189 Was there a Burns club in Thornton?
F1192 Yeah, well I think it might have been, there was quite a few wee villages //and I think//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 they combined.
F1189 Mmhm //mmhm.//
F1192 //Mm.// But he, the railway people, they, they put on a lot of functions //and they//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 used to have different
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Scottish nights //and//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 stuff mm.
F1189 Did you get Burns at all at your, your Junior school //when you were young?//
F1192 //Yeah.// //A bit of it.//
F1189 //Can you remember// doing that?
F1192 Mm mm. But another th- I, another thing that I, I remember at school and we had them at home was the Royal family. Because Princess Margaret Rose, she was born the year before me.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 'Course everyone thought if you were called Margaret it must be after her, it wasn't in my //case, it was a//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 family name, [laugh] and then, I think ehm, well, she ended up the Queen Mother, but the Queen then, I can remember her coronation and we all got a penny and a day off school and a mug //and...//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 But I think it was that she was Scottish //too.//
F1189 //Mmhm hmm// mmhm.
F1192 And then they came there every year for their holidays.
F1189 Mmhm that's right. //Do you remember//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 anything about the, the abdication at that time, you know of Edward?
F1192 Yes, yeah, I can remember seeing him. He was really handsome, I remem-, of course there was no TV //in those days.//
F1189 //Hmm// mmhm.
F1192 Well, we didn't have a TV. Didn't have TV when I left //Scotland in fifty-four but//
F1189 //Mm mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 I think Mum got one after //that.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Yes, but I, I actually read a book about ehm Mrs Simpson
F1189 Mm.
F1192 since I've been here.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Hmm. //It was really interesting.//
F1189 //Are you interested in uh-huh.// Are you interested in the Royal family then, Margaret?
F1192 Yeah and I remember ehm and then I remember the old ehm Queen Mary.
F1189 Mm oh yes //with the pearls.//
F1192 //She was// yeah, yeah, she was the Queen //Mother//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 when we were //small.//
F1189 //Mm// mmhm.
F1192 And then my mother, she remembered, //she was born in the eighteen-nineties//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 so ehm the first year she was at school, Queen Victoria //died.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 And she remembers that and they they got a holiday and that was a May holiday that was kept, we used to have that day off.
F1189 Hmm. //Yes, Victoria//
F1192 //I think they called it//
F1189 day.
F1192 Victoria Day. //I don't//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 know if they do it now. //But Mum remembered//
F1189 //No [laugh].//
F1192 and they had a
F1189 [cough]
F1192 they had a day off school, she'd just gone //to school//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 but they had a day off school. And she said they wore black dresses and stuff like that. I thought that was quite interesting.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 So that must have been ninteen oh one, or nineteen oh two, some-.
F1189 A long time, before your time.
F1192 Yeah hmm.
F1189 Were there books about royalty though, sort of when you were growing up, do you remember that?
F1192 Yes, there was quite a lot, there was um I suppose the Coronation, I remember that,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 ehm of George the Sixth and Elizabeth. And there was the, we had quite a lot.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 I think Anne, I think my eldest girl's got them now.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Because Mum gave some to me one time I went home for a holiday. And Anne was one, she was really into and her granny used to send //her cuttings,//
F1189 //Hmm// mmhm.
F1192 er you know?
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 That was long before the Diana days. //[laugh]//
F1189 //Oh yes.// [laugh]
F1192 But ehm.
F1189 Now, what did your mother do once your dad had died? //How did she manage?//
F1192 //Oh well, she got work,// she went to work in a school canteen,
F1189 Mm.
F1192 part-time. But she didn't have very good health at that //time.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 You know, she was mid-forties.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And ehm yeah, so, she just survived and the pension in those days was, she got ten shillings for herself,
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 five for me and I think it was three for Tom.
F1189 Mmhm mm.
F1192 That was what the government //gave you//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 so you could hardly live on it.
F1189 No, so do you think maybe then that the rationing that was on during the war might, in a way, have helped
F1192 Mm //it did really mm.//
F1189 //families like your own?//
F1192 And this auntie, my mother's sister, she was really good to us and I think that she had I don't know a lot about her because, you know, you don't know about these things when you're children but I did learn later on that she actually had m-, you know how ehm... She was a dependent. Her, as, you know, when you make out your tax form and you've got, I think she sent her money
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 to help pay her rent
F1189 Mm.
F1192 because we lived //in a council house//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 and I don't think we could've survived without, we always had food.
F1189 So your house wasn't attached to, to like your father's railway work 'cause //I know//
F1192 //No, no, no.// No, it was a council house.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And they were, they were, side by side there was just two. //They weren't//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 tenements.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Quite nice house actually. //And ehm.//
F1189 //Yeah, how big was it?//
F1192 Three-bedroomed house.
F1189 Mm mmhm.
F1192 And //had a nice bathroom and//
F1189 //That was quite spacious.// //Oh right uh-huh.//
F1192 //mm.//
F1189 Very nice. //Uh=huh uh-huh [laugh].//
F1192 //A very nice bathroom [laugh].// When we used to go to Glasgow to stay with our cousins, you know, //toilet on the stair head.//
F1189 //Getting a cludgie on the close, yeah [laugh].//
F1192 Shared by four families or //something like that.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh// uh-huh.
F1192 So we were, we were in luxury //when, you know, they used//
F1189 //Mm mmhm mm.//
F1192 to love coming to stay at our place and spend hours in the bathroom.
F1189 Mmhm. So wh-what social class would you say your family were, then? //When you were growin-, working class.//
F1192 //Working class, I would say.// //Yeah mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.// Now, did you sit any kind of qualifying exam, Margaret? //Ehm//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 to go to high school.
F1192 Yeah you sen-.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 It was when you were eleven.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Mm it was called the Qualifying Exam, that's what it was called. And if you didn't pass that, well, you went back to this, there was classes at this original //school,//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 that you spent your time from five to eleven, you went back //there because//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 they had
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 mm. //And I went//
F1189 //I see.//
F1192 on to high school in Kirkcaldy. //I think they//
F1189 //Yes you//
F1192 called it Eleven Plus after that, didn't they? They gave it a... but it was called the Qualifying Exam. //Mm mm, yeah and then//
F1189 //The 'Qualie', shortened to [laugh].//
F1192 ehm I spent three years there.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And then I had to sort of leave school, I could've gone on but I had to leave school to help my mother. //[inaudible].//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 Like a lot of people had to hmm. And you see, with my sister, she stayed in the Land Army 'til after the war
F1189 Mm.
F1192 so she wasn't given anything.
F1189 Mm well they, they didn't get paid very much //really, did they?//
F1192 //Oh no.// I think they got oh it was something like a pound a week or something. //If that.//
F1189 //It was an allowance really.// //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah, and// their keep. //Mm.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// Now, if you think back to before you went to ehm high school ehm of all the books that you got for Sunday school or from presents from your aunt.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 Did you have a favourite?
F1192 Eh I had a, I've forgotten the name of some of them. Eh. Talked about it with, because my girls had read them too. Something, you know, it was about families, eh,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 something five, six.
F1189 Oh "The Famous Five"?
F1192 "Famous Five". //Yeah.//
F1189 //Enid Blyton.// //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah, yeah.// They were really good. And also, I've written some of it down. Tell me if I'm rambling on.
F1189 No, you're not, you're not rambling at all. //You're giving a very good account.//
F1192 //Oh "The Wind in the Willows"// was a real favourite //of mine.//
F1189 //Oh right uh-huh.//
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 And did you own that?
F1192 Yes, I did.
F1189 Where did you get that from?
F1192 [exhale] I might have got it in a gift, I think, //from//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 this auntie, she used to give us books quite a lot at //Christmas, we,//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 you know, sometimes there were girls' annuals, //You know//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 big thick, with all wee different stories in them. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 And then, I suppose it was later on, I read oh "The Lion and the Witch and the Wardrobe" which was on TV the other //night here.//
F1189 //Uh-huh?// Uh-huh.
F1192 We watched it. //It was//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 pretty horrible //really [laugh].//
F1189 //[laugh].//
F1192 And then I liked ehm "Jane Eyre".
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 "Rebecca".
F1189 [inhale] yes. //That's a favourite of mine.//
F1192 //Yes but I// And then when I think back, I thought, weren't they all so sad? "Mill on the Floss".
F1189 Mmhm. Yes, see, you do remember them.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 Now, those books ehm "Mill on the Floss", George Eliot and, and "Rebecca", //Daphne DuMaurier's "Rebecca",//
F1192 //Mmhm mm.//
F1189 they're quite adult books so what kind of age would you have been when you read them?
F1192 Well, I suppose I was in my teens.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Hmm before I left home, I think.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Left home at sixteen to go and ehm. And then, the thing was, then, once I did that, all my books were study books.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 Yeah, 'cause I was training to be a nursery nurse and that was three years.
F1189 Mmhm. Now, those, those books, things like your copy of "Rebecca" ehm did you own that or did you borrow it from somewhere?
F1192 No, I owned it but I don't know where it is now, I suppose it's it's probably, well, things went from my mother to my sister when she passed away and now my sister's gone but
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 my niece has probably got them hmm.
F1189 Did you ever borrow books? Was there a library or anything?
F1192 Yeah, I used to go //to the school//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 library. //Mm.//
F1189 //Right uh-huh.//
F1192 But I ehm I didn't go as often as my brother did because he was, he just, when you looked at him he had a book. //He was//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 really interested.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then he got his interest in history from my father.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Did he ever get into trouble for having his nose in a book?
F1192 Yes. //Yes, definitely,//
F1189 //[laugh].//
F1192 when the dishes were to be done
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 he always //disappeared.//
F1189 //Uh-huh// mmhm.
F1192 Favourite place was the toilet with the book. //[laugh]//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.// Well at least he was being asked to do the dishes, in some homes boys didn't get //asked//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 to do the dishes. It would have been you that would have been //left with the dishes mm.//
F1192 //Yeah, exactly mm.// But he was supposed to take his turn doing something.
F1189 Oh well, your mother was quite egalitarian then. //Mm.//
F1192 //Mm.// But then my ehm Lorraine, this daughter, she just, she always disappeared when there was any work to be done because she just... she can't go, when she comes down here she loves going to the university bookshop.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But she can't go without buying something.
F1189 Mmhm. //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh] She's lucky// she can afford it. //But, you know, she buys books.//
F1189 //Uh-huh mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 She's got about four bookcases up
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 to the top, but a lot of them have been studies, //through//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 study as well. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 But she was a crazy book reader.
F1189 Yeah, uh-huh.
F1192 And then um Duncan and his wi-wife, he married an English girl four years ago in his forties //so we had//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 given up on him.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But they'd go to the book club.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 You know, they, they were here for the weekend and said, `Oh we've got to go home because it's bookclub on Tuesday night //so//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 And then you'd got to read a book before you go back. //Mm.//
F1189 //Yes uh-huh.// Have you ever been a member of anything //like that?//
F1192 //No, no.//
F1189 Or, or subscribed to you know, eh, a book club where you're, you, you get sent books? //No mmhm.//
F1192 //No, no, I// Lack of time, I think.
F1189 So you didn't take any books with you when you, you went to train as a nursery nurse?
F1192 No, I think they were, it was mainly um as I say, study books, I had to buy //books//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 for that.
F1189 Mmhm. And what about in high school ehm, did you get given any literature there to read, you know, as... //did you?//
F1192 //Oh yes,// we had to read a lot, //Shakespeare.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 And another book I read when I was... Well, I got hepatitis so I had to be in hospital for six weeks, that's when I was nursing in //Edinburgh.//
F1189 //Mm//
F1192 So I had to go to the fever hospital //there.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 And the sister in the ward was really sick of you saying, `When can I go?'
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 So she came one morning with "Gone with the Wind". //So I//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 read all that //because it's hundreds and//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 hundreds of pages but I couldn't let it, leave it down because it was really interesting history.
F1189 What age were you when that happened to you?
F1192 Eh nineteen.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 So what hospital was it you were in?
F1192 It was called the City hospital. //[?]The one that was[/?]//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 way up in, what was that, was it Liberton?
F1189 Mmhm. //Yes uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah.// I think it, I don't know what it is now, it might be a... but it was a long way, my mother used to come and visit //me.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Of course they weren't allowed in.
F1189 Mm mmhm.
F1192 And it was, at that time there was a lot of children died with it. //Mm//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 but I got it through ingesting, cleaning up. //the children that had been//
F1189 //Yes, in your work.//
F1192 sick and mm.
F1189 Now, "Gone with the Wind" would have kept you going //for a wee while. [laugh] uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 //Oh it kept going for a while but it was so interesting and it had// you know, there were big wars in those days and all kids howling //and//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 It was good //though [laugh].//
F1189 //Mmhm [laugh].// So you were able to to, to blank out all the //noise that was going on.//
F1192 //Yeah.// And when my mother came, you weren't allowed in so, and I had my birthday
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 when I was in, it must have been my nineteenth birthday //so//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 she brought me a pair of slippers but of course I wasn't allowed to have them.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And I was studying for these nursery nurse //exams.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 But they fumigated the thing so I could //have some of my lecture//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 notes.
F1189 Mmhm. Oh so they did that for you //then?//
F1192 //Mm// //mm.//
F1189 //My// goodness, uh-huh.
F1192 Amazing, isn't it?
F1189 Do you remember anything else you read during that time apart from "Gone with the Wind"?
F1192 Mm.
F1189 And what king of things you liked to read then?
F1192 And I read um "Beau Geste",
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 which I really, I like that kind of //book.//
F1189 //Uh-huh// uh-huh.
F1192 And then I had ehm I had a pen friend who was in the Palestine police.
F1189 Mmhm. My goodness. //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //So// I, I um he actually came from Kirkcaldy.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And he got killed sadly but ehm I was really interested in that part //[laugh]//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 of the world at that time.
F1189 Yeah, //in the//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Middle East. //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mmhm.//
F1189 So this would be probably just after the war then, I would, //uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah, yeah um.// Late nineteen-forties. //Yeah, [?]probably[/?].//
F1189 //Mmhm yeah mm.//
F1192 Forty-eight, //forty-nine mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm.// Mm.
F1192 There was a lot of the men over there.
F1189 Uh-huh. Now, you mentioned Shakespeare then and you also mentioned that you could've gone on at school.
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 Uh-huh so how did it feel to to leave?
F1192 Sorry?
F1189 How did it feel to leave, how did you feel about leaving school?
F1192 Oh well I was quite sad but eh my loyalty was to my mother //really//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 'cause she was struggling and I mean when you went to work then, you only got about fifteen shillings //a week.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 But it all, you gave it all to your mother. //And then you//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 got half a crown when you needed it and yeah. I just felt that she needed me. And then I never, well I went nursing and that was ehm
F1189 So did you choose that, that career then, was that what you wanted to do, nursing?
F1192 I'd always wanted to do that because I had a lot of smaller cousins.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And I used to look after them a lot.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 'Cause their father was in the Navy //and their//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 mother was
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 on her own quite a //bit.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 And I used to look after them quite often all day Saturday and, I mean, I was quite young myself.
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 But that was, and I loved babies and //and looking//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 after babies and stuff mmhm.
F1189 So the course that you did then, was that paediatric nursing or was it?
F1192 No, it was called nursery nursing. //I don't know if//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 it exists now.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But I did it in Edinburgh.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And you worked for the public health //department//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 of the Edinburgh //corporation.//
F1189 //Mmhm// //mmhm.//
F1192 //The// Public Health Officer, he was the big //boss.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Mm. And you worked in all different nurseries.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Hard work because you worked long hours. //But I loved//
F1189 //Ehm.//
F1192 it, but we had ehm from three week old babies
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 to five year olds. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Different departments so we worked down in Leith. Southport Street.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Never forget it.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 'Cause it was this, just this wee yard. No, it, it was actually a um an antenatal clinic //and a//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 TB clinic //all in this//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 building and we had part of it.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And then where the kids played in this playground, That was the flour mills there.
F1189 Uh-huh //uh-huh.//
F1192 //You looked// up onto the flour //mills//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 you know? Just all these dreary buildings. I used to love going home
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 for a day off because it was bright and sunny, well not always sunny, but just away from that, mm.
F1189 Edinburgh was a lot darker then
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 than it is now.
F1192 Yeah because that was the nickname 'Auld Reekie'. //Yeah.//
F1189 //Yes.// [laugh] //Ah.//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 Now that, that was a, I hadn't heard ehm of nursery nursing at that time. Tha-that's a new one to me so what kind of children were you looking after?
F1192 Eh all very poor //children.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Ehm there were slums //ehm//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 they were... had fleas and lice //and//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 when they came we bathed them and put them into clean //clothes.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 And then a lot of the mothers were single mothers. And a lot of them didn't know who the fathers were. Right down by the docks, you know.
F1189 So this is eh I suppose wartime, really, 'cause //the war//
F1192 //After the war.// //Yeah.//
F1189 //Uh-huh yeah.// //Yeah uh-huh.//
F1192 //It was, aye.// I went there in forty-seven. //Mm.//
F1189 //Right uh-huh.//
F1192 But there was a lot of Norwegian ships and that //came in there.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// //Ah right.//
F1192 //With some// //gorgeous wee//
F1189 //Sailors?// //[laugh]//
F1192 //blonde [inaudible].// Yeah. //But//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 aye, so erm
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 that was the seemy side of life, I tell you. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 Big eye-opener. I used to go home and tell my mother about it and she would be crying when I was telling her about these children. //But it's//
F1189 //But that's hard// work, it's stressful too. And I know you probably didn't get a lot of time to read.
F1192 No.
F1189 Apart from when you got //carted off to//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 fever hospital.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 But do you remember reading anything at that time, you know, in between shifts? Magazines or, or anything like that?
F1192 Can't think of anything, ehm. I did do some reading but I //did a lot//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 of study //too. Wait till I//
F1189 //Mm// mmhm.
F1192 [throat] Mm that's the wrong //bit of paper.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Sorry.
F1189 That's alright.
F1192 Ehm. "The Moon and Sixpence" was another one I //read//
F1189 //Oh right.// //Uh-huh uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 //and really enjoyed it. It was good.// And we sort of eh we spent a lot of time, we went to the art gallery and that //a lot.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 We went all the places that didn't cost anything to go [laugh] to //go, yeah, yeah.//
F1189 //For free uh-huh uh-huh// //uh-huh.//
F1192 //So// it was ehm and this friend whom I still write to eh she came from Bo'ness.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And ehm she was really interested in art. //So I used//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 to go all over these art galleries with her.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Lovely place.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Isn't it?
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Edinburgh.
F1189 Yes. //Now, there's a big//
F1192 //Loved it.//
F1189 library up on eh George the Fourth bridge. //Do you//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 ever remember using that?
F1192 Yeah, I, I went there but I didn't go there regularly. //Yes.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Sort of
F1189 I think there might have been one down in Leith as well.
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 No, I don't remember //that.//
F1189 //No.//
F1192 Well, we used to go on a tram at six in the morning. And go right down to Leith //on a//
F1189 //Mmhm.// //Mmhm.//
F1192 //number two// tram.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And then off there, there for the day and then back.
F1189 Mmhm. //Yeah.//
F1192 //So// tired. Oh we used to go and eh down to the gardens //when, if//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 we had time.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 Stuff like that mm.
F1189 Now, one of the things that people like to do on these long tram journeys is to read. //Do you ever//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 remember doing that? Or on the train journeys you made //to your holidays?//
F1192 //Yeah.// Used to mm the train going home. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Mmhm. Suppose I used to look at newspapers, //really.//
F1189 //Hmm.//
F1192 Mm. And that would be the Scotsman. //[laugh]//
F1189 //Uh-huh oh right uh-huh.//
F1192 Very posh.
F1189 Yes, very posh uh-huh. Did you buy that, Margaret, or did you?
F1192 Yeah, usually bought one between us. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mm.// //And shared it?//
F1192 //Mm.// Yeah. I mean I used to always get Scotsman's calendars from my sister, //mm,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 my mother.
F1189 Over here?
F1192 Used to send them here //to me, used to get one//
F1189 //Oh right, uh-huh// uh-huh.
F1192 Well, my sister passed away in October.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 So this is the very first time I haven't had a Scottish calendar, which is quite //strange really, yeah.//
F1189 //Oh uh-huh uh-huh uh-huh.// I'll need to see if I can find one //for you [laugh].//
F1192 //[laugh]// Time moves on. I kept the old one, I kept my two thousand and eight //one.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 'Cause it had some interesting photos of places I knew.
F1189 Mmhm. //Right.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Uh-huh. Was that, that in Edinburgh? //Places you knew there?//
F1192 //Yeah, partly.//
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And, we used to go to Perthshire quite a lot, to the Trossachs and eh from Fife you sort of just, never travelled very long //distances//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 when you're children, well apart from going on the //train//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 to... And then I worked in Dumfries.
F1189 Mmhm. Oh right, when did you do that?
F1192 Dumfries and Galloway Royal, I went //to//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 do my training there. Ehm.
F1189 Was that your, your general //nurse training?//
F1192 //Yeah.// Eh fifty, fifty, fifty-one.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Went down there. It was because my Edinburgh friend, she, we went to have a medical for Edinburgh Royal.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And she didn't pass her medical. //So//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 we decide- so I, she persuaded me to go to Dumfries //and//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Galloway Royal, there couldn't have been as fussy about //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 [?]with the train[/?] //there.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// And how did you like that?
F1192 It was sort of fun. Didn't know what anybody was saying and they didn't know what I was saying [laugh]. //A different//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 lingo //altogether.//
F1189 //Mmhm.// //Eh they have a,//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 a very particular way of speaking down //there.//
F1192 //Yes.// //They did.//
F1189 //Yes, they do.//
F1192 And we, and there was a lot of Irish //there too.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 A lot of Irish nurses
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and then families came because there was a training place //for//
F1189 //Hmm.//
F1192 priests,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 right opposite, //[inaudible] and they used//
F1189 //Yes, that's right.// //Uh-huh mmhm.//
F1192 //to come over to// Stranraer. //That was//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 the closest way, on the ferry. //Mm.//
F1189 //Uh-huh// uh-huh.
F1192 So met a lot of interesting Irish people though I didn't know what they were //saying either.//
F1189 //[laugh].// //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh]//
F1189 And now what kind of things were you reading all the time you were doing that training 'cause, would that be another three years?
F1192 Oh yeah, well, well I'd, I, I actually got sick, erm, we used to work twelve-hour shifts.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And you just got one day off.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And, we, you worked really hard when you were a junior during your //training.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 I mean everybody did. That was okay. But anyway, I had, I got this 'flu and anyway, I got really down to it so I, I decided I went home to see my mother and she said `Oh' you know `You're such a long way away' which is ridiculous from where I am now but ehm, so I decided I would go somewhere nearer home.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 So I went to Bridge of Earn //in//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Perth.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then it ended up not finishing my training because my mother got sick so I went to look after //her.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 But when I came, but I had done ehm I did [inaudible] for school, //at High school so//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 I could type, I did short hand //typing.//
F1189 //Oh right// uh-huh.
F1192 So I went back to that.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Er worked for an auctioneer.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then when I came out here I got a job as a typist.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then I had all the kids and then I went back to nursing. They called them nurses and now they call them carers
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 at an old people's home //just along the//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 road there and I was there for twenty years.
F1189 Oh right.
F1192 But I really loved the work //too.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 Of course I had my [inaudible] at home [laugh]. //[laugh].//
F1189 //Yes, you did.// Five children //of your own//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 ehm as you've told me before we //started//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 this, Margaret. Now, that was a shame you didn't get to finish your general training.
F1192 It was. //It was, yeah.//
F1189 //These things happen.//
F1192 Although when you came here you had to do a six months but that would've //been okay.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 And I could have gone back and done it here but I was too busy. //I,//
F1189 //Yes.//
F1192 I couldn't and ehm. Ron worked long hours //as well and//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 overtime and...
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Some people can cope with ehm. I liked being at home with my children and I'm glad now that I did. And then I went, when Grant was six I went back //to work.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 And I worked night shifts
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 so as I could be at home wh- if they were sick //or anything.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Ehm. //Now//
F1192 //And then// Ron was there //during the//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 night.
F1189 Mmhm. Did he work shifts too, your husband?
F1192 Eh no, he worked eh eight till, half past seven till five and then he worked ehm some evenings,
F1189 Mm.
F1192 he worked. Mm, you know, eh if they had overtime mm.
F1189 Now what brought you out to New Zealand, then?
F1192 Oh it's a long //story.//
F1189 //[laugh].//
F1192 [laugh] Very romantic.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 He was my //pen friend.//
F1189 //Oh good!// //[laugh].//
F1192 //[laugh]// He was my pen friend.
F1189 Your husband?
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 Really?
F1192 Well, ehm my... it all started through printing too.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 My sister had a friend who worked in paper mills
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and, 'cause there was quite a lot of them in //Scotland,//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 and Fife. And the girls there, they used to put their names in and 'cause all the paper at that time came from the UK to here.
F1189 Right.
F1192 So they used to put names in for guys to get //here to write to them.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 And with this friend of my sister, and then she got a letter back because Ron has always been a stamp collector.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And he had pen friends all over the place.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 So, anyway, he wrote back to her and then she said to my sister `Oh he's too young for me'
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 `Do you think Margaret would like to write to him?'
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 I was quite keen on writing //in those days.//
F1189 //Mmhm Mmhm.//
F1192 So that's how it started and I wrote to him for six years.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then he, he wrote to my mother and said, he said `Why don't you come out and just have a look at New Zealand. See what you think' and he wrote to my mother and said 'If she doesn't like it' ehm `I'll pay her fare back'. Very //generous.//
F1189 //He was// very keen. //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh]// Eh yeah, very keen, and, but he wrote letters like a diary.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 I knew all about his family //and,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 before I came, you know, he was one of six and a lot of them were a lot older. But anyway. I decided I would come, I thought `This is exciting', you know. By boat.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Long way, six weeks to get here.
F1189 Yeah.
F1192 But I had a, it was a big experience, exciting time.
F1189 What age were you then?
F1192 Hmm?
F1189 What age were you when you decided to come?
F1192 Eh twenty-two.
F1189 Still very young. //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //So// I ehm. Anyway, he met me. The boat came, the ship came to Auckland //so he//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 came and met me there. We stayed with friends of his mother's. And then we travelled all down and then finally got to Dunedin's... stayed at a few places with brothers and that on the way. That was in the June. And then we got married in the September.
F1189 That's whirlwind. //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh]// //But ehm.//
F1189 //Six years// //of writing.//
F1192 //It had a lot to// //do with//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 er partly, that his mother, although she was a born New Zealander had a lot of Scottish ways //and knew//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 lots //Scottish words//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 mm, stuff like, they used to give me a really hard time, you know.
F1189 Did they?
F1192 About m-, about my, the words.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Teased me about //it mm.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh// uh-huh.
F1192 'Cause I said ehm this is, you'll know this word too eh I said to his, when we first got married we stayed with his parents and he still had a single brother.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And I said `Where does your mother keep the besom?'
F1189 [laugh]
F1192 That was a good one, a besom to them was a bad //woman, you know.//
F1189 //A bad girl.// [laugh]
F1192 And then he, and then I said something about the gully
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 for cutting the meat.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And oh all different
F1189 Mm.
F1192 then my baffies //instead of slippers.//
F1189 //Oh your slippers.// [laugh]
F1192 But there's a lot of differences.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 You see, this Ayrshire friend of mine, there's a lot of words she used I didn't //know.//
F1189 //Mm// mmhm. //Oh yes, different dialects.//
F1192 //They've got different slang, isn't it?//
F1189 That's right, //uh-huh.//
F1192 //Hmm.// And the eh cousins in Glasgow used to call the sink the jawbox.
F1189 Mmhm. That's right [laugh].
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 Now, but that was a brave thing to do. It's a marvellous story, Margaret. //These//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 slips of paper into eh into //the paper.//
F1192 //Into rolls.// //Into rolls that were coming here.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh uh-huh.// //Uh-huh//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 with your name and address on them.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 And a request that they, //they write.//
F1192 //Yeah, just, and then the girls//
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 from, they knew there was, well there was a lot of girls //worked in the, in//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 I suppose they opened and found //these.//
F1189 //Mmhm.// Did that happen for anyone else that you know?
F1192 Well this friend of mine, whom I still write to, that I did nursery //nurse//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 training with, ehm, she wrote to his pal.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 But that all fell //through because//
F1189 //Oh.//
F1192 she, when I left she was courting David and eventually married him, who was an Edinburgh //guy.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 And ehm, but his friend wrote to him for a while.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But I was, on the ship, there was three girls, myself //and//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 one of them and they were all coming out to New Zealand
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 friends but some of them had met them.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But I'd never met //him.//
F1189 //Yeah.// So, but there must have been something about his letters, then,
F1192 Oh yeah. //Fa-, er, fancy//
F1189 //that let you get to know him.// Hmm.
F1192 He's left-handed, he's got, he writes //beautiful.//
F1189 //Hmm mmhm.//
F1192 Eh for a left-handed person he, he wrote ehm eh very detailed
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 about his nieces and nephews and his brothers, //and his//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 mum and dad and mm. So I felt I was coming where I knew the people. //But I was very//
F1189 //Just through reading, through// reading about it. //Mm.//
F1192 //mm,// but very homesick for a very long time.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then my mother came after I'd been here seven years. And she stayed for a year.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And then all I wanted to do was, I said `Have to sell the house, car, 'cause I've got to go home'.
F1189 Oh [laugh].
F1192 And I had three children //then.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 And then I got pregnant.
F1189 Ah.
F1192 So that was //[laugh]//
F1189 //That was the end of that.// Maybe no bad thing. //[laugh].//
F1192 //No.// That was right, it took me twenty years to go home.
F1189 Yes, uh-huh.
F1192 But we couldn't afford it for one thing. //But it was so different.//
F1189 //How did you pay for it the first// time?
F1192 Mm?
F1189 How did you pay for your journey the first time you came?
F1192 Worked.
F1189 You, you //saved the money up.//
F1192 //I worked night shift,// paid for it.
F1189 Uh-huh. So, you, you didn't have any help //with getting//
F1192 //No help.// //No.//
F1189 //your ticket?// Uh-huh. And what was that journey like, on the, six weeks on the //boat?//
F1192 //Well I'd// never been on a plane before. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 [laugh]
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And eh I went um after a month I missed my children.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And, but my sister had similar aged children.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 So that probably helped a wee bit.
F1189 Mmhm. Oh this //is when//
F1192 //And//
F1189 you went back to Scotland?
F1192 Mm. After twenty years but my mother
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mums don't change, do //they?//
F1189 //No.//
F1192 And then I went back again another time.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Nine years later my mother was still alive.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then the next time I went back she wasn't.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And that was //that was//
F1189 //That would be very hard.//
F1192 totally, that was totally different. //Yeah.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 And all your friends were gone too. Canada, Australia, all over the place Scots are.
F1189 Yeah. What do you feel now, do you feel Scottish still? Or do you feel a New Zealander?
F1192 No, I, I don't feel I'm a New Zealander. //That's//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 terrible and I've never ever become a New Zealander.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And when I leave the place I've got to get a re-entry permit to get back in.
F1189 Oh right I //see uh-huh so you're//
F1192 //Yeah, mm.//
F1189 still a, a UK citizen?
F1192 Yeah. Yeah, I've got a UK passport.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And people say `Oh why do you do it?'
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I'm proud of my heritage, really. //Ehm.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Doesn't seem like that when you leave it but you know, ehm. And when I first came here there was dif-, not so much, I suppose I got used to it but New Zealanders are sort of different.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 They're colonials, they're a different breed of people than we were.
F1189 Mm mmhm.
F1192 And eh you get into this, their ways and all the slang, I took a long time to pick up on //that.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Mm.
F1189 But you have. //[laugh]//
F1192 //I have.// Yeah, I have, yeah.
F1189 Now that very first journey on the ship, where did you get on the ship by the way?
F1192 Eh Southampton.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Eh with the pipe band playing [inaudible].
F1189 [laugh]
F1192 [?]cheer you out and away[/?] and they wouldn't let anyone come on the boat train with me, my sister came as far as London, they wouldn't let anyone, yeah.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And I met with this English girl who was one, she had been here.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Her sister had been a war bride.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 So she had come here to visit us and she met this guy here so she was coming back to marry him. We were the same age and we sort of clicked, //you know, so she//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 was my friend all the way. //[phone starts ringing]//
F1189 //Uh-huh// //uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah.// Ron'll answer that, I hope. Yeah, so.
F1189 Now, you said you brought your Bible over
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 with you. Did you bring anything else on that journey ehm in terms of reading matter?
F1192 Oh I just brought these two books.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Do you want me to go and find them?
F1189 Now, we were talking about the boat there and you, you made a good friend with another girl coming out to get married.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Ehm. Now, this is a, this is a terrific story, so how did you entertain yourself for six weeks?
F1192 Ehm. Played cards.
F1189 On board, what were the kind of the things that you did, Margaret?
F1192 Eh well, there were sort of games that you could play like deck quoits,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and there was a pool.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 It was a fairly old ship.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And then we played games of five hundred. We met up with these eh two English guys, they were going to Australia.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 They had already been //there//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 so ehm. The four of us, we did just sort of //things//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 around.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 Played five hundred.
F1189 Now, I'm interested that you did take your...
F1192 Went to the bar at night. //[laugh]//
F1189 //Oh right, well yes.// Why wouldn't you?
F1192 For something to do.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And then we, our first port of call was Panama.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then eh went to Curaçao,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Isles of Curaçao and then right on to Pitcairn Island, that was a long, long
F1189 Mm.
F1192 that was three weeks,
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 seeing nothing but //sea.//
F1189 //Ocean.//
F1192 [laugh]
F1189 Did you get seasick at all?
F1192 We did when we left home.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Because it was May,
F1189 Mm.
F1192 and it was summer so it was all the wash off //the//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 [inaudible]
F1189 Mmhm //mm.//
F1192 //Mm.// So we were sick, we didn't, missed a lot of meals.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Used to go down and then smell it and oh.
F1189 Yeah, that's enough for you. //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh]//
F1189 Now I'm interested that you took your Bible and there's your name inside now, Margaret //Wilson.//
F1192 //Yeah, well we're, and then// //Anne,//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 when she went to High school, //she//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 said `Oh I need this, I would like to use //your Bible.'//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 So she did but Ron's //mended it quite a few times.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.// Now that's, Anne Ritchie, ehm your daughter's name is, is
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 is above yours, you're Margaret Wilson. Christmas nineteen forty-two. //Was this//
F1192 //Mmhm.//
F1189 a Christmas present then? //Eh no, no it was a//
F1192 //No, that was//
F1189 That was the Sunday school, //wasn't it?//
F1192 //Mmhm.// //For the Sunday school.//
F1189 //Uh-huh// uh-huh. And it's both eh the Old and New Testament. And it's a little Cambridge University Press
F1192 Mm.
F1189 edition.
F1192 [inaudible]
F1189 On very thin paper because that must have been wartime.
F1192 Mmhm. //It would be.//
F1189 //Yes uh-huh.//
F1192 Yeah, it is fine paper, //isn't it?//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// Yes. Uh-huh.
F1192 And wasn't very well bound according to Ron. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]// Well, he would know. //[laugh].//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 Ehm but why did you choose to bring this then with you on your //journey?//
F1192 //Probably my mum// said I should take it.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 As a sort of talisman, //really.//
F1192 //Yeah.// //Something like that.//
F1189 //Well it was// a long, it must have been frightening really for your mother, you going so //far away.//
F1192 //Oh yes, yeah, it// was pretty hard. Sometimes I think, I think back, especially when my own, like Duncan went away //to Australia.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 And he was away there for a long long time. Well, six years.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And then when my girls left home oh they never went any further than Wellington.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And then Linda, she went away to the west co-, I've got a Linda, she went to the west coast and had a partner over there. Now she's back here because after twenty //three years//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 he decided to... But anyway that's //something else.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 But I used, we didn't see her very often, //because the west//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 coast... it seems close but it's //not really, it's a long way.//
F1189 //It's not, no, mm// mmhm.
F1192 And I used to think what a dreadful thing I did to my mother, //leaving her.//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 You know?
F1189 That's what children do. //Ehm.//
F1192 //Yeah.// //Well that's right, we all do it but//
F1189 //As I know only too well.//
F1192 I just thought, you know, you think at times I'd love to be there when things happen, I'd love to be there to... Because I had, with my brother and I, we had a closeness with my mother,
F1189 Mm.
F1192 through her being a widow, my sister didn't have it //quite//
F1189 //Yes.// //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 //as much as we did.//
F1189 But she was older.
F1192 Yeah, she was the one that was left there and you know, sort of
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 cared for mum in a way
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 also she was busy but
F1189 You must have been fairly confident, then, this was the right thing for you //to do?//
F1192 //Yeah, I did.// //And then//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 [laugh] like when I had my first baby I thought all I want to do is show her to my mum [laugh] 'cause I had the first grandchild //and//
F1189 //Yes uh-huh.//
F1192 stuff like that, you know, //still.//
F1189 //Mmhm hmm.//
F1192 And then when I had my first grandchild
F1189 Mmhm. //Yes.//
F1192 //I thought// oh.
F1189 Now, what were your first impressions then of New Zealand? You sailed into Auckland, //ehm,//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 you said.
F1192 I thought it was, we came down on a bus. //There used to be a bus//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 that came from Auckland to //Wellington,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 then we stayed in Wellington. And then came across on the ferry.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But ehm I thought it was the end of the world, which it is. //[laugh], you know what I mean.//
F1189 //[laugh]// //Yes.//
F1192 //And you couldn't// ehm there was no shops open
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 after five o'clock
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and there was no shops open at the weekend.
F1189 Mmhm. //My goodness.//
F1192 //So you had// you did all your shopping on a //Friday.//
F1189 //Uh-huh// uh-huh.
F1192 And then it slowly came in, //you can shop//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 anywhere //twenty-four hours a day//
F1189 //Mmhm mm.//
F1192 more or less.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But just wee things, people used to say `What do you miss?'
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 [laugh] It was a bit hard to put your finger on, you know, but you couldn't just go and have a cup of tea sort of in the evening
F1189 Mm //mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 //anywhere.// 'Cause there was nowhere open.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And there are so many cafs now.
F1189 There are, //yes uh-huh uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 //[laugh] There's a heap of them.// So, oh just wee things //like//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 and ehm I thought it was pretty primitive //actually//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 when I first came. Compared to... Things have improved //a lot.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 But I mean, I think there was a lot a lot of things have changed with immigrants //from//
F1189 //Hmm.//
F1192 other, Asian, people have changed. And then, this is a University city
F1189 Mm.
F1192 as you know so you get a lot of, there's a lot of cultures here. Not as much as Auckland //'Cause//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 there's a bigger population. But we get some really, a mixed //culture//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 of people here.
F1189 Yes it is, I've noticed that. //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm.// There's quite a lot of Asians. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm.// Yes, a lot. Now this other wee book I've got in my hand here is called "Maid Marian". And you brought this one too, it's got the stamp of Thornton Old Parish Church in it. And you got it for regular attendance //at the//
F1192 //[laugh]//
F1189 Bible class. December nineteen forty-five. Uh-huh. By Thomas Love Peacock. And it's got a fairly gruesome picture
F1192 Oh.
F1189 on the frontispiece of //somebody being hung.//
F1192 //Yeah, [?]wasn't it[/?].//
F1189 [laugh] Ehm. So, and you brought this one too, now why was that? //Why did you//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 bring this one with you?
F1192 I suppose it was, I don't really know, I suppose it was just one that had my name on it.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm. And it's a, it's a kind of textbook this. Uh-huh. Did you bring anything else with you? //Eh.//
F1192 //I// had a
F1189 Or was it just these //two?//
F1192 //I,// no, I've got another two books //but I//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 couldn't find them.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 I think there's a lot of books got down, we had so many books //of,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 down in the basement.
F1189 Just wondered if you had brought anything like ehm Robert Burns' poetry or //anything like that?//
F1192 //Mm, I've go-, I've got one// but I didn't bring it.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But I'll show it //to you, it's, it's a lovely one.//
F1189 //Mmhm uh-huh uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 When I worked at Ross Home, when I first went to work
F1189 Mm.
F1192 It's a Presbyterian //old people's home.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 And when I first went there there was two old [?]scotty[/?] men.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 that had been at the Boer war.
F1189 Ah.
F1192 They were nearly a hundred.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And when one of them died, the matron //there said//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 `Well you can have this Miss,'
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 they called you Mrs Ritchie //in those//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 days, `Because you'd be one of the few that could read it.' //And it's a//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Robbie Burns //[inaudible].//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// //Okay, [inaudible].//
F1192 //And it's got a tartan cover.// [laugh]
F1189 We had a, we had a wee break there. Ehm. Now, what I was going to ask you, Margaret, was about ehm the library on the ship 'cause I know a lot of these big ships did have a, a //a wee library.//
F1192 //Mmhm.// No, it didn't have a library because it wasn't... it had been a ship that was [inaudible]
F1189 Mm.
F1192 and it was, it had been used during the war //for troops so//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 there wasn't anything like //that.//
F1189 //No.// //No, you don't//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 recall anything like that.
F1192 Mm mm.
F1189 Ehm. 'Cause it might have been a way to while away the time although you seem to have had //company and//
F1192 //Yeah, yes, yeah.//
F1189 things to do. //Would have been//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 to, to read. Ehm do you recall doing any reading on that journey?
F1192 No.
F1189 No, not at all? Did you read anything at all before you came, then, about New Zealand? Other than //your husband-to-be's letters.//
F1192 //Well, yeah, from Ron.//
F1189 Yes.
F1192 Yes, I re-, I did read something //about//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 ehm oh it was written by a ehm a lady here who lived on a sheep station.
F1189 Mm mmhm mmhm.
F1192 And so it was really interesting, it told //you//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 she lived away in the backlocks, //as//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 they called them.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Can't think of the name of it.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But it was, you know, it gave you an insight into the... These ladies had a hard life in these sheep //stations.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 Nothing like the ones in Aussie //'cause they're//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 much bigger.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But it was a really good story.
F1189 Did that not put you off?
F1192 No, not //really, no [laugh].//
F1189 //[laugh]// So your, your future husband then, Ron, he must, he must have told you quite a lot about New Zealand generally.
F1192 Oh yeah, because he was a Ron was a cyclist, he had not cycled [?]recent[/?]
F1189 Mm.
F1192 but he had polio as a child //when he was//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 four,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and that was what got him walking,
F1189 Mm.
F1192 riding a bike.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 So he's biked all of the south islands //so I'd heard all about//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 that.
F1189 Uh-huh right, //uh-huh.//
F1192 //And he sent me// photos like, that I had to return.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 All black and white //ones//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 but ehm. And his, his other hobby is studying birds.
F1189 Mm. //[laugh] Mmhm//
F1192 //So I knew all about the birds//
F1189 mmhm.
F1192 ehm
F1189 Did, //Did you keep your letters?//
F1192 //of New Zealand.//
F1189 Did you bring them with you?
F1192 Yeah, and then
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 His mum had a coal range so one night we burnt them all. I brought them all with me but I burnt them.
F1189 Oh Margaret!
F1192 Should've kept //them,//
F1189 //[exhale]// //You should,//
F1192 //shouldn't I?//
F1189 yes [laugh] //[laugh].//
F1192 //There's a lot of// interesting stuff //there.//
F1189 //Uh-huh// uh-huh. Oh I bet your children are furious about //that, uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah, yeah.// They would love to Well, Lorraine, eh Ron was eighty ehm last year.
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 No, the year before. And two thousand and seven, and she wrote a book about her dad.
F1189 Mmhm //mmhm.//
F1192 //That's what she gave him// for a birthday 'cause //she's usually away and//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 she loves all that //stuff, you//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 know? He was //born in//
F1189 //Did he// keep your letters? No.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 No.
F1192 No.
F1189 Sometimes these things happen, don't they? //You know,//
F1192 //Mm.// //Well she's,//
F1189 //[?]but it was a shame[/?].//
F1192 she wrote this //was his//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 life as best //as she could and//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 got all the photos.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And then Grant, younger son, he put the photos
F1189 Mm.
F1192 on to screen, you know, in, onto the computer //and eh.//
F1189 //Yes, uh-huh.//
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 We had a bit of a sc-.
F1189 It was a nice thing //to do, yes uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah, mm.//
F1189 So, now, you've said you were awfully homesick
F1192 Mm.
F1189 ehm when you came here.
F1192 Well I suppose I missed my family the most.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And I suppose there was a time when I lived at home for two years //before I//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 came //here, when I went//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 back home, back to the office job,
F1189 Mm.
F1192 that I got really close to my mum.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 And I didn't think I was close to her
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 until I was away from her.
F1189 Yeah, //absence//
F1192 //Mmhm.//
F1189 makes the heart grow fonder, doesn't it?
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 Yeah, it //does,//
F1189 //Ehm.//
F1192 it's ehm.
F1189 So you did you have a wee bit of money when you arrived here, then?
F1192 None. //[giggle]//
F1189 //Mmhm.// //[laugh]//
F1192 //I think I had// ten pound when I left [laugh].
F1189 'Cause I know you had to have a certain amount of money, didn't you?
F1192 Yeah, you did. //Yeah, you did.//
F1189 //Coming, yes.//
F1192 Yeah. And then, ehm I got a job fairly soon //when I came here,//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 through Ron's, his sister's //husband.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 He worked for an eng- ehm an engineering //firm,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 and I got a job as an invoice typist so I was lucky. And at that stage, believe it or not, I was earning more than Ron because I was getting eleven pound a week and he was getting ten. You know, and he, I mean he was a journeyman, he'd been
F1189 Mmhm. //He, he'd done his apprenticeship,//
F1192 //out of his apprenticeship for years.//
F1189 yeah.
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 But it's quite a glamourous job for a young woman, being an office worker, //then.//
F1192 //Yeah, it// was. //Yeah, yeah.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 It was different but ehm. It's here now, but what I really noticed when I first came here, there wasn't as much class distinction.
F1189 Right, uh-huh uh-huh.
F1192 Everyone was much
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 the same.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But that's different now, there's ehm, what did my father used to say, `There's no snob like the working class snob'. //And I think, you know, there's sort of//
F1189 //[laugh] Uh-huh.//
F1192 in New Zealand there wasn't a middle class.
F1189 Right, uh-huh.
F1192 But it's there now. //I, I//
F1189 //[throat] Mmhm.//
F1192 can see the difference.
F1189 Mmhm //mmhm.//
F1192 //Mm.// Mm.
F1189 Right, tha-that's quite interesting then that, that you felt that.
F1192 Yeah. //I//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 felt that, you were just well, to me, you were well, probably coming from a working class //family//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 you were either working people or you were the doctor or //the lawyer//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 or
F1189 The professional.
F1192 Yeah, //yeah.//
F1189 //Yes,// uh-huh.
F1192 And ehm there's plenty of //them here,//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 you know as, well in a university city you get that and they come //from all over the world to here.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm.// //Yes,//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 indeed. Uh-huh, now
F1192 But they're not always the people that feel they're superior //to you.//
F1189 //Hmm.//
F1192 You know, it's ehm
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 strange sort of feeling but I, something I really noticed //but//
F1189 //Mmhm.// Is that something you liked about here?
F1192 I didn't like. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]// You didn't like it. Mmhm.
F1192 No, I oh yeah, I did like it, that's wrong, I, I liked to think that ehm there was just two classes //of people.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Mmhm. //Well there always are nice//
F1192 //And when you get this all over,//
F1189 people and not //nice people.//
F1192 //I mean how do you// class people? //I mean.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 At one ti- right, for instance,
F1189 Mm.
F1192 when I was at High school and you were going to go on to university
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 unless you were son of a doctor
F1189 Mm.
F1192 or a lawyer, or people with money, you couldn't go to university. //Couldn't//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 afford it or people that did send their sons or daughters, they were struggling
F1189 Mm.
F1192 to do it.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 When I came here, anybody, if you got the university entrance you could go. It's changed now but, you know, ehm it was busy. I had three that went to university and
F1189 [throat]
F1192 it's, but they always had jobs in the holidays.
F1189 Mm hmm.
F1192 But, you know, but, what will I say, it's become more so that you can go, most people can go to university and then of course they get loans now from the government.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But they've got to pay them back which is a struggle for a lot of people.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 You know?
F1189 That's what
F1192 But what is it like in Britain?
F1189 It's the same.
F1192 The same.
F1189 Same, //mmhm//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 mmhm. I'm interested in what you said, though, that you felt that there was more opportunity here //for,//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 for all kinds of people to, //to get an//
F1192 //Yeah,// //yeah.//
F1189 //education.//
F1192 Probably, partly because of the population
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 but ehm, Dunedin's got a very good name //for//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 education all round.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Probably because of its size and Otago University was the first university in New Zealand. And it used to be an-, the medical school.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 There is one in Auckland now but it used to be, you had to come here
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 to train, mm.
F1189 Now, do you think the education here, then, when you came here, was better //than what you had in//
F1192 //Er// //I think it was a wee bit//
F1189 //Scotland?//
F1192 behind the times, perhaps.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But it has improved and probably worth ehm, people come from other places.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Yeah. There's a lot of er, not that I [laugh] think that all Americans are big scholars but there's a lot of Americans //come and//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 British.
F1189 Mm //mm.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Yes, uh-huh oh now, can you remember any of the big bookshops in Dunedin when you came here or if there were any bookshops? //[throat]//
F1192 //Yeah, there's// quite a lot //bookshops.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Ehm. Well, the university bookshops and there was one called Heinmann's.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But it closed and then Whitcoull's.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 It's
F1189 Mm.
F1192 probably about the biggest. Ehm. Well, the printers that Ron worked for were called Cole, [inaudible] and [inaudible], they amalgamated with //Wickman//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 [inaudible] and they made it //[?]Wick-Cole's[/?].//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 Cole's were [inaudible].
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 The first printer's here.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And they were a family business.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mm, the old grandad and, you know, they all, even when Ron was an apprentice, he used to come every day, //he//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 was in his nineties.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 He used to come and walk round the factory every day.
F1189 Now did Ron ever bring any books home?
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Once you got married?
F1192 Yeah, he used to bring a lot of books. Usually ones that he was fixing. //[laugh] Mm.//
F1189 //[laugh] Uh-huh.//
F1192 He could tell you lots more about books //than me but never mind.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 Ehm. 'Cause I used to get a lot of //interesting//
F1189 //Hmm// mmhm.
F1192 old Bibles.
F1189 Mmhm. //Yes.//
F1192 //Really// interesting old Bibles and ehm, what was his name? Here, one of the old, old writers. There's actually a place in the library here, a special floor named after him.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And he used to bind all sorts of interesting books and then ehm, you know, some of them were gilt-edged. //He//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 brought some home just to let the kids see them.
F1189 Yes, uh-huh.
F1192 And, but they were too expensive to repair.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 You know, they were worth too much. //The//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 people couldn't, you know, books that had been passed down.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Now, well you've got these to pass down. //Your own Bible//
F1192 //[laugh] Yeah.//
F1189 and eh your Sunday school prize. Did you ever buy anything out the bookshops? 'Cause you were in quite a good job as, as you say and you were earning a bit of money. Did you ever spend any of it on books or were you saving up to get married?
F1192 Yes, saving up. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.// //So did you re-, yes.//
F1192 //I had to buy a house [laugh].//
F1189 Yes, 'cause people would buy their houses //here, wouldn't they?//
F1192 //We were buying a// //house, yeah.//
F1189 //Yes, uh-huh.// Uh-huh.
F1192 That was New Zealanders.
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 You had, you bought a section.
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 We didn't buy a section, well Ron had one and he had it all cleared and then prices went up so we never built a house, we bought one.
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 And //wooden houses in those days were cheaper than//
F1189 //A section would be a bit of land.// Uh-huh. //Uh-huh, brick house.//
F1192 //a brick house.// //Yeah.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 And then we could have afforded to build but we wouldn't have any money to buy furniture so we changed our minds.
F1189 Did you keep the bit of land though?
F1192 No, we sold //it, mm.//
F1189 //Sold it.// Right. //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm.// But he had cleaned it of gorse and everything, he'd //done.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Did all that before I came here.
F1189 Right, so he was sure, then. //He was//
F1192 //[laugh].//
F1189 sure. //[laugh]//
F1192 //Fairly sure.// Mm.
F1189 Now, there are lots of local newspapers in, in Dunedin.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Did you start reading them when //you came here first?//
F1192 //Yeah, yeah.// We had ehm, there used to be an evening //paper//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 here called Evening Star. //It's//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 fronted //here.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 We used to get that
F1189 Mm.
F1192 because the morning paper, the ODT, Otago Daily Times //which//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 is still going,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 it didn't have enough time to read in the morning.
F1189 Mm mmhm.
F1192 So we got the evening paper instead. And then there was the weekend paper.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 It, well, a lot of it was sport //in the//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 weekend //paper because//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 New Zealanders are sport mad as you've probably found out.
F1189 I know, and they like their horses. //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh]// Yeah, well he eh we're not horsy //fans.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 But rugby, cricket. //[inaudible] [laugh].//
F1189 //Yes, uh-huh uh-huh.// Uh-huh.
F1192 Just been brought up to that, I didn't know a thing about rugby,
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 but my boys are quite short,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and ehm they played soccer.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 So I knew, but Ron had never been to a soccer //game at all, he//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 took the boys so that was all interesting for him.
F1189 Did your brother support a football team by the way in
F1192 Oh yeah, in ehm eh, what were they called? The Raith Rovers.
F1189 Oh yes. //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh] They were// the Kirkcaldy team that //probably down//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 at the bottom //somewhere now.//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 But my brother used to go to that. But he was a //cricket//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 player.
F1189 Right uh-huh and how did you find the, the newpapers when you came here, how, compared to the ones at home?
F1192 Well ehm, people didn't travel as much then as they do now.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I mean New Zealanders travel around all over the //place//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 all the //time.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 And so it was all fairly New Zealand based.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 You know, what was happening here. Not a lot, you'd wri- read the occasional thing about ehm the Prime Minister in Britain or
F1189 Mmhm, yes.
F1192 if there was ehm elections on but of course you'd get it all from there now, //on the TV.//
F1189 //Were you// looking for, for that kind of news from home?
F1192 Yeah, in a sense, yeah. You feel sort of left out.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But Mum used, she used to write to me every week.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 To start with I wrote to her every week.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And I used to write to my sister.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And I loved getting letters and I hardly get any now and I really miss that.
F1189 Uh-huh yeah, it's a dying art, //letter writing, uh-huh.//
F1192 //It is, it's, it,// which is sad. Lorraine, she wri- she writes to me every week //from//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Christchurch, she's eh, she rings up as well of course but ehm she's always been the, she's the letter writer //in the family.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 But then you would get them regularly and you'd get the newspapers sent to you //too.//
F1192 //Yeah.// You know, all tied up in the wee brown wrapper thing, mm. //Mm.//
F1189 //Did you look// forward to that?
F1192 Yeah, I did, yeah and then I used to sometimes I would get a bundle, I didn't always get them one lot at a
F1189 Mm.
F1192 time, I'd maybe get two or //three.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Ron used to quite enjoy reading them as well.
F1189 Did he? //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Hmm.//
F1189 What did he think of them?
F1192 Tsk, he thought they were, well, they were a lot bigger newspapers than they had here.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 But he quite liked listen- eh reading all the stuff that was going on
F1189 Mm.
F1192 over there.
F1189 Now did you join any Scottish clubs or anything in Dunedin //when you came here?//
F1192 //Eh.// I never ever joined a Scottish club or a Burns club or anything like that. [laugh] Partly because of Ron probably, because I think, like that friend Helen I was talking about, they were a couple //when we//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 came here.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I think couples do these things together if you're both, you know, Ron wasn't really interested in... well, he was interested enough, he had Robbie, he had Burns' books //that his//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 grandfather brought from Scotland.
F1189 Right, uh-huh.
F1192 But it was what happened,
F1189 Mm.
F1192 the printworks that he worked in, they had a fire and he lost them.
F1189 Oh dear.
F1192 He had taken them
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 in there to bind //them.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 That was his grandad.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 His mother's father came, I've said before, //from//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Kilmarnock.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And he was really sad about losing those.
F1189 Well, yes. //'Cause that's three generations.//
F1192 //Well there's no re-,// mm no replacing them.
F1189 Uh-huh, yeah. There were lots of those sort of
F1192 But I joined eh quite a school eh committees, stuff like that.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And they have Plunket, I don't know if you've heard of Plunket but it's a organisation for taking your babies to.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And eh they've cut down it a lot now, it was this eh he was called Truby King. //He was an//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Englishman and he started this off for child //care, baby care.//
F1189 //Oh yes, uh-huh.// Yes, uh-huh.
F1192 And they called it eh Plunket. Because at the time it started Lord Plunket was, was he the governor general? Something like //that.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 And ehm, you took your baby along every, to be weighed and measured
F1189 Mm.
F1192 and the Plunket nurse came to visit you for the first six weeks.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Well they had mothers' clubs to raise funds to run the nurse's
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 car, that's what it was about. Yeah, and then it was high executive. You see, they've got a lot here, they've got Gaelic society.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 This friend, I was talking about her, she's in the, they have a Gaelic choir. And Scottish dancing, country dancing and I actually go to folk dancing once a week and the lady that takes it, she's, the teacher, she's Scottish. But ehm. Tsk. I've never got mixed up in that because ehm, like I said before, I think if you're both from Scotland, it's different. //And Ron's//
F1189 //So did you feel that//
F1192 not into [laugh]
F1189 That sort of thing. //Yeah.//
F1192 //Yeah,// yeah.
F1189 So did you feel you had to fit in, then? Ehm. //Yeah.//
F1192 //Yeah, I felt// I did mm. Oh I used to get invited to go to the //Scottish//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 club but
F1189 Mm.
F1192 I think in the beginning I might have felt too sad about it, listening to all the Scottish music and stuff. I still feel like that sometimes.
F1189 Oh did it make you cry? //[laugh]//
F1192 //Yeah, yeah.// I still feel like that.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 At times.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Depends what kind of mood you're in yourself, doesn't it?
F1189 Mmhm, yeah.
F1192 But ehm. I couldn't expect Ron to understand that. //He,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 He would try to
F1189 Mm.
F1192 but ehm it's not the same feeling.
F1189 Well, he's, he's where he was born, he hasn't
F1192 That's right, that's right.
F1189 Now.
F1192 And it, it leaves you a wee bit when you're here a lot of years and I know there's a lot of Scottish people that have done a lot more things than I have and said to me `Oh you know, did you see this?' and, and any, like entertainers, I used to go see them.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Quite enjoyed that but that, that used to make me feel sad.
F1189 Mmhm. So what kind of entertainers did you //get, now?//
F1192 //Oh// singers like ehm Kenneth McKellar and, and eh Foster and Allen, //and//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 stuff like that, mmhm. But you see that music makes me feel, I don't know if it's homesickness or not, don't really know.
F1189 Nostalgic, perhaps.
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 Now, what about things like, since you mention Kenneth McKellar, ehm, you know, the winter holidays that we have in Scotland that eh, Hogmanay, Christmas and,
F1192 Mm.
F1189 and //Guy//
F1192 //I miss//
F1189 Fawkes.
F1192 I missed Hogmanay and well, Scots, well I don't know what they do now, but
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 they didn't used to celebrate Christmas as much. //It was always Hogmanay//
F1189 //Hmm mm.//
F1192 dinner, that, when you had a big dinner and
F1189 Mm. Steak pie.
F1192 Steak pie. //Yeah.//
F1189 //Mmhm.// [laugh]
F1192 And I sort of missed that and then the other thing was it was hot.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Hot, hot, having this great big Christmas dinner with turkey and all that stuff. But anyway, I got used to //that after a while.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 And Ron, they always celebrated New Year.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Tsk eh What do they call it? New Year's Eve. //Well.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 Hogmanay to me.
F1189 Mmhm. We were talking about Hogmanay there and you said that ehm New Zealanders, well your husband's family, still celebrated Hogmanay //when you//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 came here. //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yes,// they did, mm and Ron
F1189 Did they call it that?
F1192 Uh they call it New Year's Eve.
F1189 Right. //Uh-huh//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 uh-huh.
F1192 And, but Ron used to go first-footing. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Becau-, I don't know if it's something to do with, well, Dunedin is supposed to be the Scottish city, well it is.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Well, it was
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And probably partly from his mother as well, that's what they'd done.
F1189 'Cause your husband is, his grandparents were Scottish, then.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 Yes.
F1192 They, his, on his mother's side, his granny
F1189 Mm.
F1192 she was a New,
F1189 Mm.
F1192 born New Zealander, first generation.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 She was one of the first white children born here on the peninsula //where you went//
F1189 //Really?// //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 //the other day, they were// all Maori families down there at that time. And then the f- grandfather came //from//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Scotland and the other two they came One came from Peebles, the Ritchies.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Peebles and eh Forfar.
F1189 Right. //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm.// So they were all, he only knew his mother's parents, mm.
F1189 Now, did they call it first-footing, then?
F1192 First-footing, yeah they did //call it that, mm.//
F1189 //They did, uh-huh uh-huh.// And, and you said it w-, it was like back home in Thornton.
F1192 Yeah, well his mum had the bottles on the table though she didn't drink any of it. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 She [laugh], she led the ehm, had the bottle of //sherry and//
F1189 //Mmhm uh-huh.//
F1192 some other //whisky or something.//
F1189 //Mmhm hmm.//
F1192 And cake and //stuff, mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm// mmhm. So they're similar, really,
F1192 Mm.
F1189 would you say, to, to back home?
F1192 But it was hot hot //hot weather.//
F1189 //Yeah.// Well, you [laugh]. How did you like the weather when you came here?
F1192 Yeah, I f-, I liked, very similar in the winter to home, really ehm. Tsk. When we have sn-, usually, when they have snow in Dunedin.
F1189 Mm mmhm.
F1192 It lies for about two days and of //course//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 I'd be saying `Oh I used to go to school for six weeks in the snow.
F1189 [giggle]
F1192 When it was frozen, we did, and we used to wear socks over our shoes so you didn't fall. But ehm. I felt it at times colder here 'cause we've got a, as Ron said `Well it's coming up from Antarctica, there's no mountains on that end to stop it.
F1189 It's quite odd, isn't it? //[inaudible].//
F1192 //Mm, yes.// And it's ehm I used to feel cold here and then when I thought back. Ehm. When you were living at home, when you went home the house was warm with a fire and your tea was ready. When you went home here from work [laugh], stone cold house and you had to cook the tea. So //you can't really compare it.//
F1189 //It's a big change//
F1192 [laugh]
F1189 And you said that the shops weren't open either. //Ehm.//
F1192 //No,// no. Not late, they were open, well you, people, Friday was the big shopping day in town and then there used to be the odd dairy open but they were selling food they weren't allowed to sell like potatoes //and//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 they could sell milk but they had this bit //screened off.//
F1189 //Mmhm mm.//
F1192 It was all daft, really. To me it was.
F1189 Did you complain a bit, Margaret? //Or//
F1192 //Me?//
F1189 did your m- your lip buttoned?
F1192 Yeah, I didn't say much. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 There was too many of them. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 But everybody remarked on it that came from home, it was just ehm
F1189 Now, if //you'd done some//
F1192 //But it was a bit// like a sleepy hollow. //But it was//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 quite nice too, if you know. I mean now you can go to the supermarket any hour of the day //and//
F1189 //Mmhm.// Yes, uh-huh. //Yes.//
F1192 //And you see// peo-, New Zealanders used to people that had cribs and batches as they called them, [?]hovely[/?] houses, they went away on a Friday night, or late Friday afternoon and came home on Sunday, you know, they had weekends. No-one worked.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Well, farmers and nurses, obviously.
F1189 So this is them going to their, their, their but `n bens? //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm mm.// //We had one up//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 in Twizel.
F1189 Uh-huh //uh-huh.//
F1192 //Eh,// it was quite a nice place, //so it was,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Mm, we had it for sixteen years. But then it got, it was three hours' drive from here, way out in the [inaudible] country.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Beautiful, right up by the mountains, it was lovely. But ehm, it became a lot of work because it was wooden, it had to be painted. Chopping wood. It just got too much looking after two places.
F1189 Did, did you take your children there, then?
F1192 Mm, our children were older when we bought it but our grandchildren
F1189 Mm.
F1192 had a lovely time.
F1189 Now you said you, you didn't join any clubs or anything but did you seek out other Scottish people anywhere? No? //Were there none?//
F1192 //No.// There was, there was plenty here.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But I didn't make a point, I didn't, I made most of the ladies I met were, on, I used to, I went to kindergarten, //once the kids went to//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 kindergarten, I joined that //club as//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 well so I met a lot of mothers there. And there was the odd Scot but I didn't particularly
F1189 Right, //uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 So you must have been settling //in a wee bit, hmm.//
F1192 //And then people were a wee bit,// in those days in the early fifties
F1189 Mm.
F1192 people were still here, you know, as they say, `You're an immigrant.'
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 Maybe not to your face
F1189 Mm.
F1192 but them.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Well what, you know, New Zealanders call English Poms. //And then Ron,//
F1189 //[laugh]// //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //he went,// when he'd just got //married to//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 me, he //said//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 `Oh, I hear you married a Pom,' you know [sniff]. Scots are not //Poms.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.// //[laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh]//
F1189 Was there any distinguishing, then, between Scots and English ehm, over here?
F1192 [sniff]
F1189 [laugh]
F1192 Yes. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 I should say no more than that. //But [laugh], no er they're//
F1189 //Oh, right, uh-huh, ok [laugh].//
F1192 Mm. English complain a lot more //about things//
F1189 //Yes.//
F1192 and about conditions.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then people say `Well, you know what to do.'
F1189 Mmhm. Go home.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 But you can't blame them. //[laugh] Uh-huh.//
F1192 //You can't blame them, no, no it's...// So I s-stayed away //from all.//
F1189 //Mmhm.// I just wondered if Scots had maybe had a, a slightly easier time of it, really //in, in that//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 respect, because this is a very Scottish place.
F1192 Mm. Could be.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 Mm. Now, you said, sorry, go on. //[laugh]//
F1192 //No no.// There, there are Scots //that//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 moan as well, as //you know.//
F1189 //[laugh]// //Aye, they're good at moaning actually.//
F1192 //[laugh]// Yes, but ehm
F1189 Mm.
F1192 that's what the English got the name of, you know.
F1189 Now, you said you got a calendar every year.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 Ehm. Did you keep those calendars at all?
F1192 Well, I did for quite a while and then threw them out //but//
F1189 //Yeah.//
F1192 I used to,
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 you know, enjoy looking at them, the
F1189 Mm.
F1192 ehm. the Courier, they put them out and then the Scotsman.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 It was a really nice one. //There was//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 quite a few that //came out.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Did you buy The Scotsman here, Margaret, //ever?//
F1192 //No.//
F1189 No, it was //sent?//
F1192 //No.//
F1189 Newspapers were sent.
F1192 Yeah, they sent them. //Mm.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// Now, did you have your children quite quickly ehm after you got married?
F1192 Er, yeah, I, Anne, was married eighteen months. //after.//
F1189 //Mm// mmhm mmhm.
F1192 We were born, married in fifty-four, she was born in fifty-six then Duncan in fifty- //seven.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 And then Lorraine in fifty-nine.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then I had a gap, I don't know what happened but Linda came in sixty- //three [laugh].//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 And then Grant //in sixty-//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 four.
F1189 Oh, well, just as well maybe you //need to have a bit//
F1192 //Yeah.// //I needed that, mm.//
F1189 //of a rest [laugh].// Did you tell your children stories at all about
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Scotland, //about home?//
F1192 //Used to// read a lot of books to my children.
F1189 Uh-huh //uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah.// They all had, they're interested in books and
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Ron always read to them every night.
F1189 Mmhm. Did he? What kind of things?
F1192 Oh well the, the big books in those days were the Noddy books //[laugh]//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 And I believe some of that's banned now.
F1189 It is. //[laugh]//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Well, specifically the gollywogs.
F1192 Yeah, that's right.
F1189 Uh-huh [laugh].
F1192 But ehm quite a lot of that and then they, they were, when they went to school, they went to the library.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 You know, they had a library day.
F1189 Mmhm //mmhm.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Now they're very British stories those Noddy books, really, they were written by Enid Blyton //and she's a//
F1192 //Enid Blyton.//
F1189 very English, I should say, more, more specifically. //How did//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 your children respond to those stories `cause they're New Zealanders, aren't they?
F1192 Yeah, I think they enjoyed them. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mm// mmhm.
F1192 Yeah, a, a lot of the books were English //books,//
F1189 //Mm// mmhm mm. //Yes.//
F1192 //that they// had //here.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Did you go into the library at all in, in Dunedin?
F1192 Yeah, they went to the store and then we used to go to the public library as well
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 when they were old enough to go on the bus. //[laugh]//
F1189 //Mmhm.// Did you ever go down there?
F1192 Mm. And they used to have ehm good, during the school holidays at the public library
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 they always had story time
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 there. Didn't take them every day //but they used to enjoy that.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm mm.//
F1192 There was a, a reader there.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 So, you took your children into, into the public library.
F1192 Mm //mm.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// What about yourself? Did you ever go and //have a look?//
F1192 //No.// [laugh] I sort of stayed there where //the children's [inaudible] mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm.// Uh-huh.
F1192 I went, my children, I probably encouraged them more to have books and things that, mmhm than I had myself.
F1189 Mm. Now, wh-why would that be do you think?
F1192 Ehm. Well, probably I realised when I got older that I-, perhaps I hadn't spent more time reading.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 And, you know, I've read books now that probably I should have read years ago.
F1189 So you've come back to reading then.
F1192 Yes, yeah. //Well, the thing is, when you retire//
F1189 //Wait for [inaudible].//
F1192 you've got a lot more time.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm. Now, could I ask you, I'm going to ask you about the reading you do now or since you retired.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 But first of all. Now, we had another wee break there and I can't remember where we, we, we finished off but I did want to ask you anyway, Margaret ehm about such as things as tartan //and//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 and that kind of thing 'cause I've noticed there is a Scots shop //in//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 Dunedin. Ehm, how do you feel about all that now? //[laugh] Do you? [laugh]//
F1192 //Yeah, I love tartan, I still love tartan.// Eh I've got a kilt somewhere.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But it doesn't fit me anymore.
F1189 [giggle]
F1192 'Cause I used to be about this size, now I'm that size.
F1189 Oh no, no, no. But what I'm holding here, you see, is a little ehm tartan-bound edition of Robert Burns, which you were telling me, Margaret, was gifted to you. //ehm when er//
F1192 //Yes, by this// ehm
F1189 an elderly resident of //the, the home that//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 you worked in died. Ehm and I would say, it's a, it was printed by Collins and I would say it's probably post-war actually.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Ehm there's no date in it. Got some eh colour plates in it of, no, black and white plates rather, of the Brig o' Doon in Ayr. [laugh] And you've kept that for a while by the looks of things. In it's, //it's tartan//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 cover, uh-huh. Are you fond of that kind of thing?
F1192 Yeah, I do.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I like the feel of it and I like reading things //in it.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// Do you?
F1192 Occasionally. //Yeah.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// D-do you read through the likes of Burns? Do you know any of it erm off by heart?
F1192 Not a lot, no.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 I know a lot of the verses. We did learn a wee bit //when we were at//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 eh I think more //primary school but//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 I can't remember
F1189 Yeah.
F1192 a lot of the
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 words, //you know.//
F1189 //Mm// mmhm. Mm that's interesting. Now, ehm one of the other ways that you could keep in touch with all this kind of Scottish culture, apart from reading about it, //in the likes of//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Burns, is the television.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Now, you didn't have a television before you left Scotland.
F1192 No.
F1189 Did you get one pretty soon after you came //here?//
F1192 //No.// Ehm of course I //came here//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 a lot later.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But er Grant was, he told everyone we got it for his birthday, //it was black and white of course,//
F1189 //Mm mmhm.//
F1192 And he was seven and he was born in sixty-four. Seventy-one before we had a TV.
F1189 Was it really?
F1192 Yeah. But eh it was Our kids later on, //there was//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 three of them at //high school then.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 Or Dunc- er or Anne might have just started high //school.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 And they reckoned it was good that they didn't have TV be- //for doing homework,//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 which //a lot of people had bought, yeah.//
F1189 //That was probably right uh-huh mmhm.//
F1192 They, they had friends that had it so they used to //pick a//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 programme and see and the kids would //invite them to//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 go and have a look.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But I think it was probably quite good for them. //For//
F1189 //Yeah,// uh-huh.
F1192 their learning.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Now that is quite late, nineteen seventy- //one, I mean I'd//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 say most people in the UK //would've, definitely, yes, had had them a while by,//
F1192 //Had them long before that.//
F1189 by then. Was that more usual here then, that people didn't have television.
F1192 More what? //Sorry.//
F1189 //More usual// here, I mean were //were you unusual//
F1192 //Oh if//
F1189 in not having a telly or, or
F1192 Yeah, //probably a//
F1189 //Were most//
F1192 bit unusual. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mm right.//
F1192 But we eventually got, there was things that we felt //we needed//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 more.
F1189 Mmhm //mmhm.//
F1192 //Mm.// And we've always eh really liked music //so we//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 used to always, that's the first thing I do when I get up, //put the radio//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 on.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And now I put the TV on because of the news //and it//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 gives you the weather.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But I usually go away and do something else and miss //it anyway.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm [laugh].
F1192 But, you know, it and ehm but on the radio there's a local, there's more than one, but there's a local programme //that//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 tells you what's happening //in//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 mm.
F1189 Now, did you ever listen to the likes of the BBC World service //on the radio?//
F1192 //Yeah, there's// eh quite a bit in, oh I went through a spell that I couldn't sleep //and I//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 used to get up because BBC comes on at, on TV One, our TV One, it comes on at half twelve and goes right through till six in the morning.
F1189 No! //I didn't know that, does it?//
F1192 //Yeah, you turn on// //TV One//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 if you're still up at //half//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 past //twelve, mm.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// //And is that the//
F1192 //Goes right// through the night here, it's all the different they give you the different weather in the different parts of //the world.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 And all the programme that you would //see at home, mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.// I know Coronation Street is on. //Yeah uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yeah, it's on// but it's about six months behind //or something like that.//
F1189 //Mm mmhm// //mmhm.//
F1192 //I wa-// I quite like Coronation //Street.//
F1189 //Do you?//
F1192 I'm a bit of a fan.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 Ron thinks it's painful //but anyway that's nice.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.// What about any particular Scottish broadcasting like eh ehm I'm thinking of the likes of Taggart. Ehm programmes like that.
F1192 Yeah, used to watch that, loved //that.//
F1189 //Mmhm// //mmhm.//
F1192 //And// ehm tsk you know the one that eh Coltrane was in, the big guy.
F1189 Oh Robbie Coltrane, //yes, uh-huh ehm the...//
F1192 //-Trane, yeah, really liked him.//
F1189 oh what was it called? I can't remember now.
F1192 I've forgotten the name of it, we used to watch all //that.//
F1189 //He's a// forensic psychologist. //Yes,//
F1192 //Mm.// //But//
F1189 //uh-huh.//
F1192 Taggart, he was really
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 out on his own.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And then they put some ehm programmes in that he wasn't in anymore.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 You know, they sort of finished off the //series//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 but it wasn't the same.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I liked the girl in that.
F1189 Mmhm. Did you? //[laugh]//
F1192 //Yeah.// //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 She was, I think she was Glasgow, she sounded //a bit like it.//
F1189 //Ehm I think that's// Blythe Duff.
F1192 Hmm?
F1189 Blythe Duff, //her name is.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Uh-huh uh-huh uh-huh. Ehm anything else? //Mm.//
F1192 //Can't think of any other// Scottish ones. //There's//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 entertainers, probably.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Ehm. We don't really get a lot of Scottish, well we haven't got Sky.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 If you had //Sky//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 you'd be able to
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 get something out of that. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mm.// I just wondered if ehm, you know, in watching these programmes ehm a lot of them are ehm based on books //and//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 novels, some of the British programmes and some of them have later been made into books, the likes of Taggart, I think, //there's a,//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 a series of books about them. //Have you ever//
F1192 //Oh got// books about them.
F1189 Uh-huh //uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Ehm have you ever ehm been tempted to read anything like that after watching it on //the television? Mm.//
F1192 //Yeah, I have, I have.// But it's ehm well, you've got so many different ehm channels //there, haven't you?//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 But we've ehm, I've said we haven't got Sky because you can get into, you know, there's history channels //and all different channels.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 We haven't got it.
F1189 [laugh] Ehm. So you haven't read anything that you maybe first saw on the television that you've //gone off and got//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 the book? [sniff]
F1192 Can't think of things off-hand. Oh I've watched eh Braveheart, it was really good, I liked //that. [laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 I had a, a great-grandfather that was called William Wallace. //No//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 relation //though! [laugh]//
F1189 //Ah right, I'm sure not [laugh].// Uh-huh. Now when did you first go back home to, to Scotland?
F1192 Ehm I came here in fifty-four and I went home in seventy-four.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mm. And it was all, there was all motorways and, you know, when I my sister lived in [inaudible]
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and so Thornton had been bypassed.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And it, when it was, on this bus, I went in the bus from London.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And I thought Thornton was way down here going over this bridge.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 [inaudible] and I thought `Where are we going?' although Mum had written and told me all about it //and so//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 we had to go up to Glenrothes and then my niece's husband brought me back there. But I felt quite sad because they isolated a lot of these places
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 with those bypasses, //didn't they?//
F1189 //Mmhm.// Yes, //uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 So you, you saw changes then?
F1192 Oh big changes, mm. And of course, a lot of friends gone.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And seing my sister's children for the first time. //That was exciting.//
F1189 //Did you take any of your// children home with you?
F1192 No.
F1189 No.
F1192 But they've ehm. Eh Anne, the eldest, she's been for the first time when we went to Duncan's //wedding//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 six years ago, she was forty something.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But Duncan and Lorraine, they both went, they did their OEs
F1189 Mm.
F1192 ehm Lorraine was, had her twenty-first birthday with her granny.
F1189 Mmhm mmhm.
F1192 And ehm she was working in Edinburgh and she went across there for it and Duncan he had his twentieth //birthday//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 with his granny, he cycled through quite a bit of
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Britain.
F1189 Mmhm. //Now, tell//
F1192 //Ehm.//
F1189 me about this OEs. //I've heard this.//
F1192 //Oh, just// overseas experience
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 but that's //what they call//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 it //OE.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// //And what does that//
F1192 //And some// people do it older than others. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]// But i-it's a strange expression, I think.
F1192 It is.
F1189 Ehm.
F1192 Different.
F1189 Rather than just travelling. //It's//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 that somehow or other
F1192 It's young, it's, well I think it's probably varsity students and that that //started off//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 calling it that. //Yeah but they call//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 it their //OE.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 But now there's people that go that are much older than teenagers, //you know, yeah.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 It is I suppose, I don't think about it anymore //because//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 got used to it.
F1189 Was it always called that?
F1192 I don't //know.//
F1189 //OE.//
F1192 Well, when I first came here, New Zealanders weren't travelling nearly //as much as//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 they do now.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Er well, there wasn't too many planes
F1189 Mm.
F1192 so, and they didn't really go by boat
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 out of here just //to//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 have a look. But a lot of it now ehm, some of it, they've probably got English parents //or//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 that's really what took my kids to Scotland, I think, the fact that their granny was there //and my//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 sister //and//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 relatives they'd never seen. Mm.
F1189 So it, it is a bit like, well, not going home exactly but going //back to your//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 roots.
F1192 Yeah. It is, yeah. And ehm they're not into genealogy but they know Right, Ron's, we've got the Ritchies away back to the seventeen-hundreds.
F1189 Mm mmhm.
F1192 Eh and his sister was really into genealogy but they keep telling me I should do something. And I had a cousin, `cause they don't know anything about me really.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 [inaudible] from and then Ron always says `Oh I'm quite happy just to know about my great granny and
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 but you should really go back.
F1189 Do you think so?
F1192 In some ways but then there's, you always find skeletons //in the cupboard in//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 most families. Maybe stuff you don't want to know but ehm I never knew one of my grandfathers 'cause he had died before I was born. But I knew my other, my father's parents. I remember them quite well which is quite nice.
F1189 Do you think that matters more to you because you've emigrated?
F1192 I think so, I think it's I, I think that grandparents are important in your life.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 My children eh, well my mother was in Scotland but they knew a lot about her. And then she came here and then they went there and, but ehm. and they knew Ron's mum. //She was//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 nana. //Mm.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 [third person asks if they've almost finished]
F1189 It's alright, it's alright Ron, don't worry. Now, tell me how did you get back that time you went home, how did you get back to S-, to the UK? How did you travel this time?
F1192 Yeah, I flew.
F1189 You flew. //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm.// And I flew by, it was more common to fly by the States //then.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 Eh, I don't know if it was cheaper or not but I flew back ehm flew to, you usually had to fly to Sydney and then to the //States.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 You went to Hawaii.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Los Angeles
F1189 Mm.
F1192 because in those days in New Zealand, they only travelled as far, that was a return //trip.//
F1189 //Mm// mmhm. Yes.
F1192 Eh Auckland to Los Angeles and back.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then their hostesses
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I got this //news from a hostess.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 They never went any further. //Then it//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 changed
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 flight people, then I had to get on a British Airways plane.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Flew to New York. //It was//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 all quite an experience in this //Los Angeles airport ehm.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 And then New York.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And then London.
F1189 In some ways harder than getting on a boat.
F1192 It is, yeah, once you're on the bo-boat you're there to stay.
F1189 And did you do that on your own or did Ron go with you?
F1192 I went on my own. //Couldn't//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 afford for two to //go.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// I know, it was //a lot of money, mmhm.//
F1192 //And the second time I went// in eighty-three.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Ehm on the way back I flew to Sydney. I think it was Singapore and Sydney. And I met my uncle that I hadn't seen for twenty-eight years and I stayed four nights in //Sydney with him.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 So that was really good. My auntie had died by then but ehm. They're the ones we were talking about before. Yeah, so that was really good and then I went in eighty-three. Went the other way.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Now, all that travelling, did you read? Are you the sort of person who takes a book with you
F1192 No. //I got//
F1189 //when you're travelling?//
F1192 ehm you know, they give out magazines and stuff like //that.//
F1189 //Uh-huh// uh-huh.
F1192 And watched I don' think there was many movies when I first, first time I went.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But ehm.
F1189 So you didn't take a book?
F1192 I didn't //take a book, no.//
F1189 //No [laugh].// Did you bring any back?
F1192 No. //[giggle]//
F1189 //No.// Oh, you did bring one 'cause, now where have we, where did we put it? You showed me it a wee minute ago, that was the, the Patter book.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Ehm.
F1192 Yeah, that was,
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 that was later on again.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I don't know where I put it.
F1189 [exhale]
F1192 Did I give it to you? That was my niece that //gave me that.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// Did she give you that when //you were over there?//
F1192 //When I was leaving.// //Mm.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 Oh.
F1189 Oh, we'll find it, don't worry about it ehm. So you brought that one back. Ehm [laugh]. //[laugh]//
F1192 //Pop that on there.//
F1189 Now, I think we probably should move on and talk about what you read now because you've told me, Margaret, that, that you read a lot more now that //you're retired, mmhm.//
F1192 //Well, I read a bit more but I'm not//
F1189 [throat]
F1192 a great reader but I'm reading that book at //the moment and I was//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 I read
F1189 Now this is eh Philippa Gregory, "The Other Boleyn Girl".
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 I'm still getting through that. //[laugh]//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 And there's a boo-, I'm trying to remember her name. Jenny Pattrick who's a New Zealand writer.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And she wrote two really good books
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 about ehm mining, early mining on the west coast //which//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 was pretty tough.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And that was in the eighteen-hundreds, //it must//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 have been, and they were really interesting.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then she wrote another book but I didn't enjoy it as much. And Linda gave me those 'cause she lived on the coast.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 But that Jenny Pattrick, th-that's not as good as, as her other stories.
F1189 Oh, //yes, right.//
F1192 //Because they had a big,// //they had a big//
F1189 //I've//
F1192 mining disaster over the //year.//
F1189 //Mmhm.// I've heard of this author. Ehm and she's a New Zealand author.
F1192 She's a New //Zealander.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Is this something quite recent for you? //That you're reading,//
F1192 //Yeah, fairly,// fairly recent. //Yeah.//
F1189 //you're reading// New Zealand authors. Ehm 'cause the likes of Philippa Gregory, she, she's British.
F1192 Yeah, that's //right.//
F1189 //Ehm.//
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 But these were, well I think Linda was interested because she was living on the coast //but they had//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 really hard //times these//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 women and //these//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 mines, they lived in these terrible //conditions and//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.// //Now this//
F1192 //They were// from all over Europe, they were eh Irish,
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Germans, Yugoslavs, mm.
F1189 So in a way you're reading about the history of, //of immigration here, uh-huh.//
F1192 //Yes, yes, mm.//
F1189 Are you interested in that?
F1192 Yeah, I am quite //interested and//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 I've read others about ehm tsk the first doctor away in the back boxes, a lady doctor
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 and she wrote and she was a farmer's //wife//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 as well so she had a pretty tough life and used to ride her bike to deliver babies and stuff like that, mm, was really good.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 And then I'm trying to think of this other one that I read. //It was a,//
F1189 //This one//
F1192 it wasn't a New Zealand one and it was, tsk, you'll know it.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 Because it was about, it was about the Glasgow Blitz.
F1189 Tsk, was it Meg Henderson?
F1192 Could've been. Ehm and it's got a name like, when you hear, when you hear the name it sounds like it would be all Catholic, it's, what's it called? On the cover it's got a, a photo of a roof.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 You'll know it.
F1189 I probably do know it, [laugh], was this a kind of family saga type of book?
F1192 No, it was a, oh well it was about this //particular girl//
F1189 //Mm mhmm.//
F1192 and what happened to her in the Blitz.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Really sad.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I've got it.
F1189 Mmhm. //You own that book?//
F1192 //But you might not have// the time, do you //want to//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 see it?
F1189 I'm interested in what you are reading just now, the likes of Jenny Pattrick.
F1192 Oh yeah, well I've read that.
F1189 Ehm.
F1192 But I'm, I'm //reading it//
F1189 //Did you buy that// yourself Margaret?
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Did you buy that one yourself?
F1192 No, one of the girls gave it //to me for Christmas or something.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm mmhm.// Do you buy books?
F1192 Not a lot, no.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I would usually get, they say `Oh this is a really good book //Mum.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Read it and then
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 give it back.'
F1189 I've noticed that books in New Zealand, they're quite expensive.
F1192 Very expensive.
F1189 Hmm.
F1192 Yeah, yeah. Look at the price on the back of that //one.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 Oh. That Philippa, //that one there.//
F1189 //Gregory.//
F1192 Oh, maybe it's too //hard to read.//
F1189 //I can just about// see it, but I think it's twenty-nine //dollars.//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 Mmhm. //Ehm for a paperback.//
F1192 //Which is a lot of money.// //Mm.//
F1189 //Yes,// uh-huh. Well, th-that's about twelve pounds.
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 Ehm and this book would cost you maybe seven pounds //in the//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 UK so //they are a lot//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 more expensive. Ehm. So you're very wise you get your family to //buy them.//
F1192 //[laugh]//
F1189 One of the things that people do back home though, ehm, is they, to get round the expense of books, is they buy them in charity shops.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Do you know if any //of that goes on here?//
F1192 //Oh, yes, yeah.// They have them, they have them here. //Yeah.//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 And there's a really good ehm second hand place down in the Gardens Mall there.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 You know, where [?]you came[/?]. Did you get off the bus at the bottom or did you walk all the way?
F1189 Ehm, I got off the bus at the bottom, yes, uh-huh. But I did pass a, a Salvation Army
F1192 Mm.
F1189 second hand shop //ehm//
F1192 //Mm.// //They haven't got books//
F1189 //on the way here.//
F1192 in there but they've
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 across the road and there are some more where the
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 New World is and um they've got a really good one in there.
F1189 Would you ever buy books in a second hand shop?
F1192 Yeah, probably would if I thought they were in quite good condition.
F1189 Mmhm //mmhm.//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 Do you know how much they might cost in, in the second hand shop here?
F1192 Oh, probably you could get one for five dollars //or//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 mm.
F1189 But that's a, that's a big saving, //isn't it?//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Uh-huh. //And ehm.//
F1192 //It is.//
F1189 Since you don't really buy books then, you, you get them as a gift. //Do you use the library at all?//
F1192 //Mm, yeah, yeah.// I've got another, ehm, do you know Fay Weldon?
F1189 Yes, uh-huh uh-huh.
F1192 I've got one of hers //there too.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 That's passed on from Lorraine as well. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 Lorraine would just love to meet you. I've told you all about her, shame she doesn't live in Dunedin.
F1189 Lorraine's your, your oldest daughter, //is that right?//
F1192 //No, she's// the middle one
F1189 Middle one. //Right.//
F1192 //Mm.// //She's//
F1189 //Oh, right//
F1192 the doing it, the one that's doing research.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I really enjoyed that book.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Oh, there's one that someone lent me.
F1189 Uh-huh. Right, this one's Mary Stewart.
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 Ehm. And this is about Scotland, [laugh].
F1192 Yeah, //yeah.//
F1189 //This is a// story set in the Hebrides. //Ehm.//
F1192 //Now there's// This is the one
F1189 This is more Jenny Pattrick.
F1192 Yeah, that's, that's the first one. //"Denniston//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 Rose" and it's about that //wee girl that has a//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 really hard time as a mining child.
F1189 Now, I, I happen to know that this had been a very popular book in New Zealand.
F1192 It's what?
F1189 That this book called The "Denniston Rose" This had been a very popular book //in New//
F1192 //Oh it has.//
F1189 Zealand. //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm.// And there was a second one which I haven't got. But I'll find this one about the... I've got a few Catherine Cookson but they're all the same, aren't they? //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]// I'll just pause this for a wee minute, okay? Now, I'm just looking here at a pile of books that you've, that you've read recently, Margaret. Two of them ehm by Jenny Pattrick who's well-known New Zealand novelist ehm and she's writing, you know, stories about immigrants in the past, really ehm. One book here by Mary Stewart, which is a Hebridean tale, a, a fictional story. Did you enjoy that one?
F1192 Tsk, oh, not over much. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]// What was wrong with it?
F1192 Eh. Well, it was quite a good //story//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 but it was eh. Didn't seem too real. //[laugh]//
F1189 //Realistic.// Did you, do you think this is the sort of ehm, mm, sort of Hollywood eh //version of Scotland?//
F1192 //Yeah, it is a bit.// //Mm mm.//
F1189 //Uh-huh, yes.// Uh-huh. Ehm. //I know what you mean.//
F1192 //'Cause American// books are like that, //aren't they?//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 I mean the American stories.
F1189 Yes, uh-huh. Now, this, this is an interesting one I've got here which is 'Auto da Fay' by Fay Weldon and I had forgotten but, but she grew up in New Zealand. //Ehm.//
F1192 //Mmhm.//
F1189 Is that right, uh-huh, have you read this one?
F1192 Tsk, yeah.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 I, I haven't read it recently.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 But I quite enjoyed it when I //read it//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 and then Lorraine, I got another one but I didn't like it.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Which usually happens.
F1189 Uh-huh. Which one was that that you didn't like?
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Which was one was that that you didn't like? //Can't remember, [laugh]//
F1192 //Can't remember, [laugh].//
F1189 [laugh]. She's written quite a few.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Ehm.
F1192 There might be the names on the front there.
F1189 Well, she's best known for the, "The Lifes and Loves of a She-devil".
F1192 Tsk, oh yes. I've read some of that.
F1189 Uh-huh //uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Not your cup of tea, this, this is kind of autobiographical this //one though.//
F1192 //Mm.// I've qu-, I enjoyed that one.
F1189 Mmhm. And the last one we have here is a nice hardback ehm that your daughter gave to you.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 And
F1192 It's just borrowed, hmm.
F1189 and this, it's a biography of George Orwell.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Uh-huh, so what did you think about this?
F1192 Yeah, I qu-, I enjoyed that.
F1189 Mmhm. What was it about this that, that, that you like?
F1192 Oh, well he was a down to earth guy //really.//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Eh, a bit different.
F1189 Did you know about George Orwell before you, you came acro-, you knew a bit about him. //Yeah.//
F1192 //Mmhm.//
F1189 Ehm, so have you ever read eh //any of his//
F1192 //Sorry.//
F1189 Have you read any of his books?
F1192 No.
F1189 Uh-huh. Oh well, you might want to do that.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Now I said you were nearly at the end so could I just ask you about certain Scottish authors then, to see whether or not, at any time in your life, you've read these, either back in Scotland or, //or here//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 in New Zealand. And the first one's easy because it's the poetry of Robert Burns.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 And you have read //that [laugh]//
F1192 //I know that one.// //Mm.//
F1189 //[laugh].//
F1192 And we had lots at //home of//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 Burns. //I//
F1189 //Yeah.//
F1192 presume my //sister's//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 got them now.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 A lot of intr-, e-editions of them and songs.
F1189 Yeah, so that's something you've brought with you.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Uh-huh. Now what about ehm Walter Scott.
F1192 Tsk, yeah.
F1189 Now when did you read them?
F1192 I think at High school.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 We did some of that, mm.
F1189 Do you remember any of them?
F1192 Remind me.
F1189 Ehm. Things like "Ivanhoe".
F1192 "Ivanhoe". //Yeah.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// Ehm there's a whole group of novels by Scott called the Waverley //novels.//
F1192 //The Waverley// novels. //Yeah, we had some of them at home.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh, "Heart of Midlothian".//
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 Uh-huh. Did you, did you have them at home?
F1192 Yes.
F1189 Who, who, who owned them? Were they
F1192 They belonged to my father. //Mm.//
F1189 //Right// uh-huh uh-huh.
F1192 Eh there was something else I remembered about ehm Tsk, "The Heart of Midlothian".
F1189 Mmhm. Yes, //[laugh].//
F1192 //Read that book, I read that, that was,// a lot of that about Edinburgh.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 Ehm and he also wrote poetry.
F1192 Oh yes, I know. //Yeah,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 I know a lot of that poetry, learnt that at school.
F1189 Mm. Can you remember any of it now?
F1192 [exhale] Got to think about it.
F1189 Mm.
F1192 You tell me
F1189 [laugh]
F1192 and I'll remember.
F1189 The one that sticks in my mind, that I learned at school was "The Young Lochinvar".
F1192 Oh yes.
F1189 The young Lochinvar has come out of the west.
F1192 That's right, yeah. //On a horse.//
F1189 //[laugh]// That's right //[laugh].//
F1192 //That's it.// Yeah.
F1189 What did you think about Scott's stories, the novels, how did you find them?
F1192 Ehm.
F1189 [cough]
F1192 Usually sad.
F1189 Mm mmhm. Did you find them easy to read?
F1192 No.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 Quite difficult reading //and//
F1189 //Yeah.//
F1192 ehm. Just find them all fairly, I suppose that's how things were in that
F1189 They're quite hard going, I t- well I think //personally.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Ehm, um Robert Louis Stevenson?
F1192 Tsk, yeah.
F1189 Have you ever read any of them?
F1192 Yeah. Read them, read them at school too.
F1189 Mmhm. But since you've been here wou-would you read anything like //that?//
F1192 //No.// No, I haven't but the kids have.
F1189 Tsk um, the other author I have here is Lewis Grassic Gibbon. I don't know if you've heard of him, Margaret?
F1192 No.
F1189 He wrote a ehm some books called "A Scots Quair".
F1192 Hmm.
F1189 The first of which was "Sunset Song" and it, and it was made for television at one point. Don't know that one. //That's fine.//
F1192 //No.//
F1189 John Buchan?
F1192 Yes. //John Buchan.//
F1189 //[laugh].//
F1192 "Thirty-Nine Steps". //[laugh].//
F1189 //[laugh].//
F1192 That's Kirk- the thirty-nine steps are in Kirkcaldy that's how I know that. //'Cause I used to walk up//
F1189 //Ah right, uh-huh.//
F1192 and down them
F1189 [laugh]
F1192 because they were, it was a shortcut to //our High school.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm// //mmhm.//
F1192 //Leaving// for school used to walk down, they were always covered in sand and yeah. Know that one really well.
F1189 And di- and //did you...//
F1192 //I've read that a few times.//
F1189 Have you? //Right, so//
F1192 //Yeah.//
F1189 when was the last time you read it?
F1192 I think I've read it once since I came //here.//
F1189 //Mm.//
F1192 Found it, I must have found it for a while I worked in that Salvation Army shop //and they used//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 to have the odd books that //came in.//
F1189 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1192 I don't think I've got it now.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But I love that story.
F1189 Mmhm. //Did you?//
F1192 //Yeah.// //Yeah.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// Did
F1192 Partly because it was local to me.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 And when did you first read it then?
F1192 Tsk. Mm. Probably early teens or mm can't remember what age.
F1189 And where would you have been likely to get that?
F1192 It might have been somewhere, one that was in our home.
F1189 Mm mmhm.
F1192 Think so, probably my father had bought it.
F1189 Mm mmhm. He wrote a lot of books, erm, John Buchan. Ehm can you recall any of the others?
F1192 Mm.
F1189 No. I can't either so don't worry about //it [laugh].//
F1192 //[laugh].//
F1189 Eh Neil Munro?
F1192 No.
F1189 No, don't know that one. Ehm A.J. Cronin?
F1192 Yes.
F1189 Remember any of them? "Hatter's Castle". No.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 You remember that one?
F1192 Yeah, //I remember//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 that.
F1189 Ehm. But he's obviously not someone who's stuck in your, stuck in your mind //then.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Ehm. Any other Scottish authors that you can think of that you, that you read either back in Scotland or since you've come here?
F1192 Tsk was there someone that used to write sto-, well there would be, about the Isles about eh, you know, Barra and the Hebrides?
F1189 Mmhm. Oh there probably was.
F1192 No, no but I can't remember //the name of them.//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.// Don't worry it'll come back to you, you're probably getting tired now,
F1192 Mm.
F1189 we've been talking a long time. Now, one that you might like then is, is, are the novels of eh Margaret Thomson Davis. Do you know that name?
F1192 I don't know the name, no.
F1189 Well you could maybe look out for them 'cause I think you'd like them, Margaret, as they're all about ehm Glasgow //in the past.//
F1192 //Oh right.//
F1189 Tsk ehm George MacDonald Fraser?
F1192 No.
F1189 No. Now, there are also in Scotland at the moment some quite popular eh detective novels.
F1192 Oh.
F1189 Would you read any of that kind of fiction?
F1192 Oh yes I
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 might read the odd one.
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Do you read any ehm detective novels?
F1192 I have done.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Hmm. But ehm there are some, something in one of these eh, one of the things you sent
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 It was something about woman detective.
F1189 A woman detective.
F1192 Ladies' detective.
F1189 Oh, Alexander McCall Smith.
F1192 Mmhm.
F1189 Uh-huh. Have you read them?
F1192 I've read some of that, mmhm.
F1189 And what do you think about Alexander McCall Smith?
F1192 Yeah, I liked that.
F1189 Uh-huh. That's "The Number One Ladies' Detective"
F1192 That's it, Mmhm. //Mmhm.//
F1189 //[laugh]// Have you seen it on television as well?
F1192 I've seen some of it.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Ehm, he's written other ehm series of books, ehm, some of them are set in Edinburgh. Have you read any of them?
F1192 Tsk, no, I don't think so.
F1189 Well you'll need to put them on your Christmas list then, Margaret. For your daughters.
F1192 Right, and what are, what are they called?
F1189 Ehm. Off the top of my, "Scotland Street", I think they're called "Scotland Street". Ehm.
F1192 "Scotland //Street"?//
F1189 //Yes,// Uh-huh.
F1192 Right.
F1189 Ehm, I haven't read them myself, I'm giving away my ignorance here. Ehm. Now a lot of the others you've mentioned to me like the Beano and the Sunday Post and what not so, ehm. There's only one that you didn't mention throughout your whole interview and that's the Scots Magazine. And I have seen some copies of that since I've been in
F1192 Yes, //I have seen it//
F1189 //New Zealand.//
F1192 and I, I've actually got some there //that I//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 passed on //from//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Duncan, he's got a Scottish neighbour
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 in //Wanaka.//
F1189 //Uh-huh// uh-huh.
F1192 And she sent me these //down.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 They're quite interesting.
F1189 Uh-huh. You like them, do you?
F1192 Yeah.
F1189 'Cause the, the
F1192 They're the ones about that book.
F1189 That's right. //Uh-huh.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Ehm. They've got short stories in them sometimes but also journalistic and //articles.//
F1192 //Oh, yeah and// advertising different,
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 where you can go for your holidays.
F1189 Uh-huh uh-huh, now you mentioned holidays that use-, you used to take. up at your, your house in the country,
F1192 Yeah. //Twizel.//
F1189 //as it were.//
F1192 Mm.
F1189 And you've been back home to the UK. Have you ever been overseas to any other places on, on holiday?
F1192 No.
F1189 No.
F1192 No. Just Australia from here, I've never been,
F1189 Uh-huh.
F1192 when I left home, people weren't going to Europe.
F1189 Yes, uh-huh.
F1192 Except //of//
F1189 //Uh-huh.//
F1192 this ehm. auctioneer that I've //had//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 their eh family used to go skiing in Switzerland but, you know, they could afford it.
F1189 Yes.
F1192 But I mean it's quite common now, isn't //it?//
F1189 //Uh-huh// uh-huh. Now you mention, you said holidays in Europe there. Do you think of Scotland now as being part of Europe?
F1192 Not really. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 Not in my eyes //it's not but//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 we went ehm in nineteen ninety- //two,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 Duncan was working in //Finland,//
F1189 //Mmhm// mmhm.
F1192 doing geology stuff there, and we met up, we were going home, my mother //and//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 two of my sisters and eh met up with Duncan in London.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Then we crossed over to Paris on the catamaran.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And we got a rental car and Lorraine had oh she went as French pupil to Tahiti and she met this French girl who lived in Paris.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 So we went and stayed with her in //Paris//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 and then we got a rental car and we went right down through France to Switzerland. Eh, it was a sort of whirlwind. //It was//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 just for two weeks //and we went//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 right over to Italy.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And Germany and Austria, just touched on them.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 And then back, well that's the first time I had been to Europe.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Mm, except eh, one of the times Ron and I went from here, you could travel eh from here to Amsterdam.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Singapore, Amsterdam and then you could fly from Amsterdam to Edinburgh. So we did that one year that we went.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 So I've been in Amsterdam [laugh] all day in the airport.
F1189 You've been about. //You really have.//
F1192 //[laugh]// //All day in the airport.//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 That was an entertainment. //Mm.//
F1189 //Uh-huh.// Now airport is a place where you, you can pick up books as well. //Do you ever remember//
F1192 //Oh, yes, I know.// //There's, they've//
F1189 //doing that?//
F1192 got really good books //at airports, haven't they?//
F1189 //Uh-huh uh-huh// uh-huh.
F1192 Mm.
F1189 Have you ever bought any //in a//
F1192 //No.//
F1189 in an airport? No.
F1192 Book stalls, well they used to have them on at Thornton
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 ehm railway station.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 They used to have a book stall, they had books stalls all over the railway station. //So//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 they've still got that.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 Used to have, I can remember a big one at Waverley //at one time, yeah.//
F1189 //That's right, uh-huh uh-huh.// Yes they so still have a, a W.H. Smith.
F1192 'Cause we used to wait when we used to get the train, //Waverley,//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 to go to Fife.
F1189 Mm. Can you remember looking at those?
F1192 I remember looking at these.
F1189 Mmhm //mmhm.//
F1192 //Hmm.//
F1189 I-it seems to me th-that you've got used in your life, Margaret, to not spending money on things like //books.//
F1192 //Mm.//
F1189 Is that right?
F1192 That's right, yeah. //That's got something//
F1189 //Where do you s-.//
F1192 Well, it's not particularly books but I just ehm. As you say, they're expensive here.
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 But I have got a good ehm supply from my family. //It sounds crazy but//
F1189 //That's right, uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1192 ehm and I've had a few life stories of nurses here and ehm. I have read Florence Nightingale years //ago.//
F1189 //Mm// mmhm.
F1192 And there was a lot of interesting ehm nurses in wartime
F1189 Mm mmhm.
F1192 here which I find quite interesting.
F1189 Uh-huh. Oh you like that, that kind of ehm //biographical.//
F1192 //Yeah, well they all went, these// nurses
F1189 Mmhm.
F1192 went oversea-, you know, did war //things//
F1189 //Mmhm.//
F1192 so it's quite good, quite like that. //Mm.//
F1189 //Yeah.// You've been very good, can I thank you very very much.
F1192 [laugh] //That's okay//
F1189 //Now,//
F1192 I feel //as though I've rambled on about//
F1189 //for all of the help.// //No, no, you,//
F1192 //nothing really.//
F1189 you've been lovely to talk to.
F1192 I hope I haven't held you up.
F1189 I've got one last question. Ehm, could you sum up for me the place of reading ehm in your life and what it's meant for you?
F1192 Say that again.
F1189 Could you sum up for me the place of reading in your life //and what//
F1192 //Mmhm.//
F1189 it's meant to you. It's a hard one, [laugh].
F1192 Yeah, eh. Well I've probably got more enjoyment in books that I've read since I retired because I've had more time. You're busy when you retire too but probably more enjoyable and no interruptions. That's what I've found hard about reading. And I've got a lot of friends that are bed readers but I don't read in bed. Never have, it's something I don't do.
F1189 Me neither.
F1192 No, I go to bed to sleep. //[laugh]//
F1189 //[laugh]//
F1192 You know, I never get comfortable. I'm either moaning about it being too cold and not comfortable. But I think probably I've enjoyed books more in retirement although I don't read. I should read more, I know that.
F1189 Do you think that, do you think, would you like to have been better read, Margaret?
F1192 I would, I would mm but I think that ehm a lot of people read for fantasy and I've always had a big love of family and I think that people, what was I saying, haven't had exciting, exciting lives but there's always been something happening. Because there's a lot of us. Sounds crazy, I mean, when I say to people we have twenty-three people for a, ehm, Christmas and that's all family, think oh.
F1189 So you've got your own real life stories //then? [laugh]//
F1192 //[laugh].// I, you know, there's always something happening with someone. Hmm.
F1189 Well, I think that's a good place to end and once again thank you very much, Margaret.
F1192 Oh that's //alright.//
F1189 //It's been a// pleasure.

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Interview with Margaret Ritchie for Scottish Readers Remember Project. 2020. In The Scottish Corpus of Texts & Speech. Glasgow: University of Glasgow. Retrieved May 2020, from http://www.scottishcorpus.ac.uk/document/?documentid=1675.

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Interview with Margaret Ritchie for Scottish Readers Remember Project

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Year of recording 2009
Recording person id 1189
Size (min) 154
Size (mb) 744

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Recording venue Interviewee's home
Geographic location of speech Dunedin

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Transcriber id 1222
Year of transcription 2009
Year material recorded 2009
Word count 24558

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Participant id 1189
Gender Female
Decade of birth 1950
Educational attainment University
Age left school 16
Occupation Research Assistant
Place of birth Ayr
Region of birth S Ayr
Birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Country of birth Scotland
Place of residence Glasgow
Region of residence Glasgow
Residence CSD dialect area Gsw
Country of residence Scotland
Father's occupation Journeyman joiner
Father's place of birth Ayr
Father's region of birth S Ayr
Father's birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Father's country of birth Scotland
Mother's occupation Domestic
Mother's place of birth Ayr
Mother's region of birth S Ayr
Mother's birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Mother's country of birth Scotland

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