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The Day Before Yesterday: 130 - Thoughts Of New Zealand

Gladys Schofield and her family begin to think of emigrating to New Zealand.

I mentioned the Japanese earlier, walking around our textile firms, making notes of everything they saw. It had not been all innocent. They began exporting woollen material in patterns identical to ours. You could hardly tell the difference, except for the price which was much cheaper, as the workers were not paid so well as ours. We lost orders as naturally, buyers wanted the material at the cheapest price.

Synthetics were invented too, so wooilen yarn was not as much in demand and mixtures of both were now on the market. They prevented shrinkage so were more popular. They tried all ways to try to compete but steadily the mills began to close and the peoples livelihood was taken away. We would see this steadily taking place. I was pleased the boys had chosen engineering and all the family began thinking there may be better prospects overseas. Cliff was always watching the papers for any opening there may be for his job in New Zealand but if the family was too large to be accepted there, we would have to go to Australia, as most of our family was thinking of doing.

I loved England but I understood Cliff's concern but the two oldest boys still had their hearts set on Canada. Alan was nearing the end of his five year apprenticeship. At twenty two, he had passed his final exam. A group of them were thinking about this move. Within the next twelve months, they had emigrated to Montreal, Canada. I believe they had a hard time at first, finding somewhere to stay, adapting to conditions, as it was much colder in Winter than England. Quite a lot of the population was French Canadian, all this and a new job must have taken a lot of getting used to after the comforts of home but he didn't mention this to us and soon settled down to his new life.

David had got a girlfriend. He was only young yet but Pat was younger still, being only sixteen. They had met at someone's party. She was a slim, dark haired girl and very shy. He seemed to spend all his spare time seeing her. Rod had not brought any more girls home since that first experience, though he could tiptoe in at any time now and not be shut out by Alan.
It was a jolly time with the teenage lads. Sometimes in the evening when they were at home, Cliff and the boys played cards. This always ended up in a lot of laughter, as we were told of the antics of one or another of them. Such secrets we learned as each got the better of the other. One night a week they took turns to fetch fish and chips for supper. Of all the foods, I miss my English fish and chips the most.


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