Thursday, March 4, 2010
In Remembrance--of my mother
The Friday My Home Town Shoot Out theme this week is "In Remembrance", a topic chosen by ChefE. Saturday being my mother's funeral I can't think of a more fitting time for reflecting on her life. What follows is part one of a very abbreviated version of her autobiography. Tomorrow Sepia Saturday (on Barry's personal blog) will feature part 2
My name is Rosanna and I was born in Mitcham, England to Captain George Shepherd and Rosanna Staines. I have a sister, Eileen and a brother, Ted. We first lived in rooms over the Star Pub which was owned by my grandfather then later moved to London Road.
We grew up next to a butcher shop (above which dad’s sister Blanch Shepherd and her husband Wilfred Baden Bradford and their two children Gill and Roger lived) but which had all these the poor animals outside waiting for slaughter and was such a sad experience that I have been a vegetarian all my life.
My parents first home was heated with a Valour Perfection lamp and our bed was heated with a brick that had been heated in the oven and wrapped in a towel. There was no bathroom but we did have a flush toilet only it was downstairs and outside. On one fine day my mother restained the toilet seat but forgot to tell dad who sat on it while it was still wet and ended up stuck to it. Mom had to use turpentine to separate the toilet from his bottom.
Eileen, Ted and I use to play "up the yard" where dad, Grandfather Shepherd, and uncle Fred worked. The forge in the blacksmith shop was lovely on a cold winter’s day, especially when we were old enough to jump up and reach the bellow's handle.
On one occasion, we three children played "wedding". Lana wore a white lace curtain, Ted was the groom and I played the horse who pulled them in a wooden wagon that dad had made for us. Incidentally, many, many years later, when I "developed my female anatomy" my siblings called me "three brass balls". Another nickname I had in school was "steamroller".
However I was a pretty good student and became head prefect for a couple of years. Being England it was, of course, an all girl's school and I once played the lead in our school's production of Hiawatha.