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The Day Before Yesterday: 51 - A Bit Of Land

Gladys Schofield and her husband move to a house with a bit of land, intending to be self-sufficient by producing their own food.

Cliff took Reggie's departure bad and knew it would not be long before he also would be called up, having already registered when he turned twenty, it was just a
matter of time.

The thought of leaving us must have worried him, if only he had a bit of land to grow vegetables and keep a few hens. He had seen such a house on his way to work up Leeches Hill, the land sloped steeply, a farmhouse stood at the bottom where the ground levelled out. The kitchen window was high up as it was built into the sloping ground at the back, one large bedroom stretched the length of the building with two windows and the living room was the same downstairs. A large barn, almost as big as the house was attached to the outer wall of the house.

It was not very welcoming and I could see it was the land that was the attraction.

A row of cottages stood across the other side of the lane in front of us, at this lower level, so I was not isolated. "Well" Cliff said, "what do you think?" It was winter and things look at their worst at this time of year so I said, "If you are willing, we can give it a go".

The rent was eleven shillings, much more than we had paid before but now we had land and would be able to save on other things. I had the knack of making a house liveable and if my aunty had bothered to call on us sometime, she would see my furniture was cared for and polished weekly. When you have little, you care for what you have got.
The kitchen was so different to the one we had just left. It had a stone flagged floor and was quite dimly lit with being built into our sloping land but it did have a gas cooker and boiler and to me these were very important.

The first few weeks kept us very busy, Cliff planning his hen run and I making curtains for the many windows along the front of the house. Why they hadn't added another bedroom, I couldn't understand as a window was already provided for this. This bedroom looked very large and uninviting and sometimes gave me the creeps.

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