Holiday for Seven:
IBy •ftnamamoasionewmme. MOLLY WALSH' .......-. ...... HOLIDAYS' arc still very much in the air and most of my correspondence is still about them. Two readers have written to say what very enjoyable holidays they have had on farms found through the Farm Holiday Guide, which was mentioned in Jotter's column earlier in the year.
This guide is partieulaily useful as each county is dealt with separately and it is therefore possible to find one near home and therefore keep fares to a minimum. Thus one Lancashire family found a farm in Cheshire about which they write most enthusiastically: " We found the farmer's wife most reasonable and understanding with the children. Her husband was also very kind and allowed the children a free run on the farm. The food was good, plain but plentiful. The bus passed the gate which took us to Mass in Crewe. The farm van drove us from the station on arrival and departure. The total cost for Daddy and I, three boys, 14, seven and 15 months and two girls. 10 and nine was £25.
" Incidentally. I was most amused by your reader who wrote of hiking with a pram. When ours were all babies we used to go with three in a big pram, baby and two toddlers and six year old walking. We have even taken apple pies and meat pies in an effort to get the three year old to eat. We still go every Sunday afternoon to the Moors around Bolton. Our tea has to he seen to be believed but we do have lots of fun."
A NOT HE R picnic story also comes from Lancashire. it took place in 1941:
"We had eight children then and my sister-in-law joined us for a picnic to a local aerodrome. It was quite a distance along little twisty lanes and we started off with the pram carrying the two youngest and all the ' eats.'
" We also took two bicycles, the idea being that each adult in turn could ride ahead carrying one child on the carrier, dump the children some few hundred yards ahead and then return for two MOM.
" Meantime the pram continued to be pushed steadily by whoever felt inclined. So, as the speed of any convoy is simply that of its slowest member, the speed of the pram governed all the rest, but as variety is the spice of life, a little ride, a little rest, a little walk and a little push caused the journey to seem shorter than it really was. "It was a hilarious outing and was further enlivened by the fact that when it was my turn to ride the bike I nearly cannoned into another cyclist at a sharp corner and he turned out to he an old friend.
"We stopped and chatted whilst the current occupier of the carrier shot back and reported excitedly: ' Mum's talking to an airman; and the whole cortege quickened up speed to see who I'd picked up.
41 THAT man is now a clerk at the Gas Office and whenever 1 go to pay my gas hill, I see his grey head and his sedate face and I can't help thinking of a glorious day in high summer with aeroplanes wheeling overhead and he falling off his bike at the turn of the lane.
" The eats we had that day, the rationed marg., the biscuits on points and the sweets we'd saved from the sweet ration to suck contentedly as we jogged home in the gloaming, "The lanes have all disappeared as the housing estate pushed further and further into the country, but still at the bottom of our garden is a well grown willow tree. It was a tiny sapling when we dug it up that day beside the stream in 'our' field. 'Our' field is now rows of houses and the stream has been covered over. but that day in wartime was one of the things we'll remember for ever."
A READER wrote recently to ' point out (in a very charming way, I must say) that there is too little space devoted in this column to the activities of single women to whom so much of the smooth running of parochial life and so many of the apostolic societies owes so much. A defect of which I am very conscious.
was particularly pleased therefore to meet and hear a talk by Miss Mcmanus who is Health Visitor, Midwife and nurse in a Buckinghamshire village.
The work which Miss Mcnianus does, and similar work done by
social workers in other spheres could only be done by a single woman who has no direct ties of her own. Her work involves her in all the vital spheres of life from the birth of babies to the care of old people and helping them at the end. Her role involves her not only in rendering the services belonging to her job. but in trying to fill in the deficiencies in education for living.
Miss NIcmanus takes as the centre of her work the education of mothers not only in physical care of their children, but by means of mothers' clubs, which she holds in her own home. she helps them to educate themselves in all the problems of family living and bringing up their children. "lf you can get them discussing their problems," she says, " they educate each other."
She is a great believer in Dr. Grandy Dick Reid's methods of painless childbirth and by helping both mothers and fathers to appreciate the proper nature and attitude towards pregnancy and childbirth starts the family relationship off on the right foot.