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A Shout From The Attic: Mummy-Daddy Years - 5

...It was an unusual house, with three bedrooms, a bathroom, a large sitting-living room, a cellar-head kitchen, and a dark, dank cellar that the Mesopotamians had in mind when they described their version of the afterlife...

Ronnie Bray continues his richly-detailed authobiography.
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I was working at a Reynold Walkden’s garage in Milnsbridge as the storeman, when Philip, the managing director son of Reynold made it known that he had a washing machine to sell. I bought if for ten pounds and paid him two pounds a week out of my wages. It sat next to the oven in the cellar head kitchen of our home at 15 Church Street, Longwood, Huddersfield, over the top of Grace Walker’s underdwelling.

We rented the house from whoever owned it through Bramley’s estate agents in Saint George’s Square. The rent was about three pounds a week. It was an unusual house, with three bedrooms, a bathroom, a large sitting-living room, a cellar-head kitchen, and a dark, dank cellar that the Mesopotamians had in mind when they described their version of the afterlife.

I left Southampton, taking Matthew with me, leaving Gaynor with Gerry. Gerry was not working out as a wife and mother and I had had enough of her laziness, her reluctance to take care of the flat, the laundry, and the children. Matthew was nine months old at the time, and he needed more care and attention than Gerry was willing to provide. I had to go home during the midday everyday whenever I was close to home to change Matthew’s nappy, clean him up, and feed him. Gaynor was used to foraging for herself and apart from not having her mother’s attention, was reasonably well nourished.

Matthew was nine moths old when I took him by motor coach to London, and then to Huddersfield. René looked after him for me while I went to work. After a while I got to thinking about Gerry and Gaynor and took a trip down to Southampton to see if she was willing to try again. The flat at Silverdale Court was empty, but enquiries led me to the home of one of Westwood Taxi’s drivers, Ray. Ray was married with two small children.

Ray and his wife had been school sweethearts. They had married when they were very young. Ray was working at a bakery driving the van, so they took the van without permission and eloped to Gretna Green in Scotland and were married at the old forge. That had been a few years back, and now they lived in a small rented house with their two children. I don’t know what tale Gerry told Ray to have him move her and Gaynor into his home, but when I went in to see if she would come back, and she agreed, Ray’s wife was taken aback and demanded an explanation.

I don’t know what Ray’s explanation was because we left almost immediately and travelled up to Huddersfield. I do know that she was no push over, and that when Ray had taken to dalliance with another girl and she found out, she went to the girl’s house, marched in and then stood looking at the befuddled lass explaining, ”I just wanted to see what I was up against!” That was the end of the affair and Ray had been kept on a short lead since that time.

Gerry and I lived at Mothers on the Holays, Dalton, until we secured the rented house at Longwood, where the last of our story together unfolded in some wonderful ways.

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