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Yorkshire Dialect: Getting The Bird

An unexpected birthday gift may be fluttering Cousin 'Arry's way, according to Mike Shaw's dialect tale.

Ah wer sat reeadin' abaat t' looacal cricket in th' Examiner t' other neet wen Ah 'appened ter peep across at yar Ethel. Shoo wer monny a million mahles away at t' tahme, Ah reckon, cos shoo wer just starin' blankly inta space.

"Wat's up, lass, tha'r nooan thinkin' abaat Kersmuss bi naah, atta?" Ah asked.

Shoo sat up awl at once lahke a startled rabbit an' din't even know wat Ah'd sed.

"Ah wondered if tha wer lookin' inta thi crystal bowl a bit to see wat tha could get me fer Kersmuss," Ah sed.

"Well, Ah wer 'opin' Ah maht get some inspiration if that's wat tha meeans," shoo replahd. "It's mi cousin 'Arry's seventieth birthday next week an' Ah'll be 'anged if Ah can think o' summat ter get him. Ah dooan't usually bah 'im a present, but seventy's a bit special afta awl."

"That's nooa problem," Ah sed. "Some fags or a bottle o' whisky should be awlreight. Oh, but Ah'd fergetten 'e's teetooatal."

"Ah' tha obviously din't know 'at e'd packed up smooakin' six months sin' an' awl," sed Ethel. "Ah can't even bah 'im a book token, awther, cos 'e's nooan a reader, Ah do know."

"Ther must be summat 'at 'e does ter pass tahme on, surely," Ah sed.

"Oh, aye, 'e's getten a 'obby," replahd Ethel. 'E's a pigeon fancier, tha sees, sooa 'e spends awl 'is spare tahme daan at 'is loft. But that dun't help solve t' problem. Ah can't varry weel bah 'im a pigeon fer 'is birthday, can Ah?"

"Well, Ah dooan't see whah not. If 'e wer a gardener tha'd nooan think twahce abaat gettin' im a plant or two," Ah suggested. "An' tha'd nooa need ter splash thi brass abaat, nawther. If tha pops daan ter taan they've 'undreds on 'em at they're wantin' ter getshut on!"


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