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The Day Before Yesterday: 131 - Spreading Wings

...My brother Alan and Mary, his wife, were making the first move in the family. They were going to Australia and not long afterwards, Alma's family went also, so it seemed our families were spreading their wings all over the world. We almost decided to follow them but in the New Year of 1964, I found I was pregnant again and this time it was intentional...

Gladys Schofield continues her autobiography.

Brenda had not stopped at two little girls, a third one was born in the September of 1963. She was a darling baby and turned my heart over. How I loved the little helpless ones but Pauline, my baby, was six in a short while and my childbearing years were almost to an end. I would be foolish to think about things like that at my time of life.

My brother Alan and Mary, his wife, were making the first move in the family. They were going to Australia and not long afterwards, Alma's family went also, so it seemed our families were spreading their wings all over the world. We almost decided to follow them but in the New Year of 1964, I found I was pregnant again and this time it was intentional.

My dear friend had kept in touch all through the years. We had visited each other at times and watched each other's families grown up. Christine had married and had a little girl. Ethel brought her over one day to see us. The older boy, Alan was also married with two sons, so it was with sadness we heard Clem had passed away. We went on the Saturday to see her, not wanting to take the children at a time like this.

Rod and David took charge of the children though Susan at thirteen was getting quite capable.

It was a sad journey, not helped at all by the weather. We were lucky we didn't encounter snow through the dark and dismal countryside. With rows of naked trees standing to attention, not a tremor of wind stirred the branches, as though they too were in mourning.

Ethel was not on her own. A little white dog made its presence known as we entered her house and treated us as intruders. I was pleased she had this little companion to help her get over this loss, although his death had been expected for a while, it doesn't make it easier when it happens. Both Christine and Alan lived fairly close. We had missed the funeral by two days as we couldn't get there any earlier and just as I used to do, she had been busy working through her grief, as the smell of 'hot bread' greeted us also when we arrived.

We stayed rather late in the evening, which was foolish as it was dark when we set off back and found the car wouldn't start. I was getting quite worried at this point. It would be hard to find a garage to assist us so late on Saturday night. We had free wheeled the start of our journey, as my friend lived up a hill but there was no sign of life in the battery at all and we steadily came to a halt. A passer-by told us where there was a garage, about five minutes walk from us, so Cliff set off in that direction while I stayed in the car.

Our luck was with us again as this small garage was owner occupied, as it was attached to a house and after thinking I must have been forsaken, I heard people walking in my direction and a stranger arrived with Cliff, carrying a new battery.

Coming away as quickly as we had to see my friend, we had not expected this to happen and were not over loaded with money to buy a new battery but this man took us on trust, with only our name and address, allowing us to send the money later.

The first call box on the journey home, we phoned the boys to inquire if all was well and explaining why we would be a little late that night.

I hadn't told anyone except Cliff of my pregnancy, as this was early days and who in their right minds would have another baby at forty three years of age. The morning sickness was not as bad as it had been with Pauline.

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