Fish Wife

"FISH WIFE" It tells of two women one from Scotland the other from North Shields.Margaret Rose Garbutt, has a violent abusive husband who beats her up whilst pregnant she runs away from from Sterling and when her baby is born is forced to give her up. years later she ends up working in the kipper factory on North Shields fish quay where she meets Irene Milsip who had such a bad home life that when she was set up on a blind date met Jimmy Johnson who she marries more out of desperation than love. Jimmy is a waster and is having an affair behind Irene's back with an Irish immigrants daughter until Irene's friend finds a letter in the street. Annabelle Crosby is faced with a dilemma- does she tell her friend or let the affair go on. This is the story of hardship and struggle of two women during the 1960's and their rise to success but one thing they will never forget is their roots. FISH WIFE is a tale of love, ambition, family values, and friendship.


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“Come on Annabelle diven’t be keepin’ us all in suspense here.”

“Well said Annabelle; I was walking along Bedford Street when I found a letter addressed to, she paused and took another sip of her tea whilst the girls hung on her every word.

“Who was the letter for? Non other than Jimmy Johnson; you know, who lives two doors up from me.”

“So what?

“Well he’s been seeing another woman.”

“Never in the bloody world; does Irene know?

“No I don’t think so as she was kissing him this morning as he went out to the yard.

“Whey the dorty bugger; he’s havin’ his cake and eatin’ it as well.

“Who’s the other woman then Annabelle?

“Is it anybody that we know?

“Oh aye we know her alright she gets in “The Boro bingo hall on a Friday night.

“Annabelle sipped on her tea again then took a bite of her biscuit.

“Haway lass tell us who it is then?

“It’s non other than Katie Flynn from Rudyerd Street.

“Never’ they all voiced.”

“Who would have guessed eh?

“Certainly not Irene; poor woman.”

“What are we going to do asked Betty?

“What do you mean?

“Well someone’s got to tell the poor woman haven’t they; I mean If my Eddie was playing around with another woman, I would want to know wouldn’t you like?

“Aye I would; I would chop his doodah off if I caught my man with another woman said Agnes.

“You’ve got no worries there Agnes; the others said”

“You really think so?

“Oh we know so; Agnes no one is going to bother with a fat, bald, and lazy bugger like your man. They all laughed out loud.”

“You’ve all got room to talk mind said Agnes none of your men are Paul Newman are they?

“Now there’s a man for you did you see him in the film “Hud” at the Gourmont?

“Yes; now there’s a man I would love to get caught in bed with.”

 “Shut up said Betty, I feel a hot flush coming on.”

“Cool your self down woman and put the kettle on again.”

“I’ve got more to do than drink tea all day you know.”

“Shut up and put the kettle on.”

Betty filled the kettle then placed the whistle back on she lit the gas with a match from a box of Swan Vesta’s.

She emptied the tea leaves from the last brew in her plant pots out side there was no garden in these houses so the only plants were grown at the allotment on Charlotte Street or in large terracotta plant pots.


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