top of page

Links to the past....

The picture shows a row of houses at the bottom of the road where I lived for the first 18 years of my life. I don't remember them looking quite so small or severe, but to the left of the shop was a cobbled entry we often used as a short cut. And although we never saw it, it was said that someone kept a tame jackdaw, or maybe a magpie, in one of the back yards, and that it had been taught to speak a few shrill words, which to us seemed a magical thing. It was as mysterious to us as a phoenix, its attraction further embellished by the so-called "well known fact" of the times, that such birds were also accomplished thieves, with a liking for jewellery and gold pocket watches, and lived in nests piled high with glittering stolen treasure. Sadly, careless pedestrians bedecked in diamonds and well-polished half-hunters were pretty thin on the ground in 1960's Trent Vale, so we would save the thick foil caps from milk bottles, usually silver but occasionally the gold of Jersey milk, to use in an attempt to lure said avian robber into view...after all, didn't the gold tops, carefulled flattened look just a little bit like sovereigns? or dubloons even? But disappointingly, and inevitably, nothing came of our plotting, and the feisty chatterbox bird, if it existed, saw straight through our feeble skulduggery and remained out of sight, no doubt preening its glossy black wings in the reflection of stolen silver spoons, before rearranging its collection of diamond rings in the sunlight.

You Might Also Like:
bottom of page