Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Sunshine and Mr Carter...

Sixty-three years ago this month, Scrobs was incarcerated in The Royal East Sussex Hospital, having both legs realigned. They were growing the wrong way, so a quick snap, a few pins, and everything was back on track.

I reckon several of the lovely nurses here were in and out of Children's Ward 2 - bless! Six weeks is quite a long time for a 7 year-old, and I was desperate to be out in time for my July birthday, and all these girls were just gorgeous to us few kids.

I'd started school a year in Rye a year or so before, and used to travel with my sister on a number 30 Maidstone and District bus. The season ticket had been welded to my satchel, which was a good idea, as the fare of around 3d (just over a new penny now), was very important, and we always had to show these to the bus conductor of the day. One of these we nicknamed 'Sunshine', as he was always beaming and a happy man to be in charge. We all loved him, and he always welcomed us like an extended family - and there were a lot of us believe me!

Another conductor was Mr Carter. He was a grandfatherly figure, and a really kind gentleman to everyone. I can still remember him welcoming an elderly lady onto those long seats by the open door at the back, and while she made herself comfortable, she smiled and said how nice the bus service was, and Mr Carter was as happy as Larry to keep up the conversation.

Of course, being a kid, I had lots of visitors, family and friends, but only on a couple of days a week. Visitingimes were damn strict back then, and children needed naps! (Why they thought ringing a damn great bell ouside our ward was a good way to keep children asleep in the afternoon is beyond me), A highlight was being the star patient for a visit by the Hastings June Carnival Queen! And she signed my plaster in red biro!

Another highlight was being visited by one of our favourite bus conductors, Mr Carter, but I was asleep, and he didn't want to wake me. Of course, he left me some sweets; he was like that...

63 years eh. What a lovely man.


rvi said...

Ah, those dear old deisel fume laden M&D buses! That brought back memories of my childhood too. We used to go to stay with my dad's sister and her ex-navy (foul-mouthed!) hubby at Sheerness just after the war. Aunty Sheila used to run the little cafe on the pier just outside the town and I went with her every day. Nearly drowned myself clambering among the slippery plant life growing merrily under the support beams, Real adventure for a seven year old.. I recall there used to be - and may be still is - a large round red sea mine with protruding metallic horns cemented to the pavement just opposite the bus station. Those clanky old single and double decker M&D buses used to take us kids up to Minster and Leysdown for a day out (and copious amounts of vanilla ice cream!). It is many years since I was last on the Isle of Sheppey, but apart from new bridge across the river to the place, I doubt it has changed much. memories come flooding back that I have not recalled for years.

.... and, as they say, now for something different. Please click the link for something from the 1960s for children with their feet screwed on the wrong way round.


rvi said...

.. forgot to mention those wonderful seven-across seats upstairs with a very narrow aisle running along the outside edge. I thought we had dispensed with that extended stretched design until I recently travelled in cattle class on a local Boeing! Who do you disturb in the middle of the night when you want to get out of the centre seat in a five-across design? Nowadays, any flight over 2 hours (max) = Club class for us. Days of slumming at 33k feet have long gone.

goosegirl said...

rvi - classic! Whilst thinking outside the box like many cricketers do when they're stumped, was it his legs on the wrong way round or were they actually on the right way round and the rest of him wasn't? If that was the case, I sure hope they didn't try giving him an enema before the op!!

It may also explain his love of the nurses
Whose starched, rustling aprons drowned all of his curses.
They gave him a bed bath with icy cold water
Including the places that they shouldn't oughta.
With his temperature normal and matron on leave
And wiping his tears on the end of his sleeve,
He said cheerio with a word of advice.
"Bed baths with loofas don't feel very nice
So if in the future I have a slight fever
I'll pick up the phone and call my mate Reever
Who knows what to do when I've drunk all my wine.
"That is your stupid fault. Have a nice time."
Now you know who your friends are, so take it from me.
Remember back when where your mouth used to be
And long before "Exorcist" came on TV?
Just phone a friend and they'll soon sort you out.
Unfortunately, sorry, I am not about
So you'll have to make do with a pizza and stout
Or open the malt and the whisky and wine
All carefully stored for that festive time.
Whatever you do, have a good time. By heck,
If you can't find your mouth it'll go down your neck1

Neddy Seagoon explaining the law of gravity TO Eccles:-

Neddy. "Eccles, jump as high as you can. Now, you see how you came back down to earth. Why was that?"
Eccles. "'Cos I live here!"

A K Haart said...

Six weeks is a very long time for a 7 year-old, no wonder you remember it well. I had my tonsils out at four, spent two weeks in hospital and still remember it.

rvi said...

Sorry, GG, don't remember my cricketing days - but I do seem to recall that such folk have to cope with/are born with short legs, long legs, backward square legs and, occasionally, long legs - or if particularly handicapped, leg sides or leg stumps. Perhaps the game is played exceptionally well by pirates with their built in wooden legs...

Thud said...

To be remembered kindly...it should be enough for any man.

goosegirl said...

rvi - only if their wooden legs are made from willows. All that silly-mid-off bending down to retrieve their balls from the pavilion roof must have been a real pain, hence the ability of willow wood to provide a source of aspirin plus, if they had hollow legs, a small nip of brandy to raise the game.