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Open Features: Family Life: Ten - Fog

Lucy Oates marries and then raises a family.

To read earlier episodes of Lucy's engaging life story please click on http://www.openwriting.com/cgi-bin/mt-search.cgi?IncludeBlogs=1&search=lucy+oates

I quite enjoyed being at Mirfield, in spite of the fact that I had to walk home one night as the buses had all stopped running because of black fog, and black ice on the road. This was before we were made into smokeless zones. Luckily I had some company, as a young man who lived fairly near to us worked near to me, but it took us nearly three hours and I arrived home with black streaks all down my face from the fog.

The following night I stopped in Mirfield with a woman who worked in the grocery dept, and lived near to the shop.

It was about this time that I met my husband He came into the shop about closing time and he wouldn't go until I agreed to meet him, later. I used to say that once I'd said yes I couldn't get rid of him and we got married at Brockholes Chapel on August 5th 1950 and we were pleased when we learned I was pregnant, but I carried on working until the end of Autumn.

I then had to go into hospital two weeks before the baby was due as the doctor said I would have a Cesarean birth due to my bone structure and my son arrived on December 23rd weighing 6lbs 7 ounces and we called him John. He was a wonderful gift to us. He always has been. My Father was delighted too as he like all men wanted a son to carry on the family name.

We were quite happy then, in spite of not having much money, but we got by, and when John was ready for school a lady asked me to do some sewing for her, as she wasn't happy with what had been done at the shop. She told her friends and I was kept busy sewing until I developed cataracts when I was 63. My right eye was done in May, and my left the following January, but in the March I was diagnosed with Cervical Cancer so that meant another stay in hospital to have it removed then a week’s course of radium at Cookridge Hospital. This meant that I had been in hospital five times in just a year counting the two days for investigation. Fortunately, I have had no more trouble of that kind, but arthritis and heart trouble are not good friends. I I get by, and I am very well looked after by John and his family.

In 1974 John was married to Elaine Lancaster, a lovely young woman from a very good, decent family. Unfortunately her father died just before their wedding, but he had seen their house so the wedding went ahead as planned.

Just over three years later they presented me with a grandson Richard Moorhouse Oates, so my maiden name still lives on, and Louisa arrived just over three years later to make their family complete. They are both grown-up into good responsible adults and they both got good degrees at university. Louisa carried on at Bangor and got her M.A. degree last year, so you will understand why I'm so proud of them. John has got his M.A. from Cambridge University. and Richard got his BA at Aberystwith,


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