My missus she often said to me ‘Now then Bessy, don’t be calling me missus.’ She said this especially when the minister was coming for his tea. My missus wanted me to call her ‘marm’ but I always forgot. At first I forgot by accident and then I forgot on purpose just to see the look on her face.
My missus was always after me for to write things down in a little book. She give me the book and pen and ink the day I arrived. ‘Now then Bessy,’ says she, ‘I want you to write down your daily doings in this little book and I’ll take a look at it from time to time.’ This was after she found out I could read and write. When she found that out her face lit up like she’d lost a penny and found sixpence. ‘Oh!’ says she, ‘And who taught you?’ And I told her it was my poor dead mother, which was a lie for my mother was alive and most likely blind drunk down the Gallowgate as usual and even if she was sober she could barely have wrote her own name on a magistrates summons. But my mother never was sober if she was awake. And when she was asleep, she was unconscious.
But wait on. I am getting ahead of myself. Let me begin nearer the beginning. More ...