' The Ragman's Serenade tells the story of four families- one from North Shields and the other three from Wallsend. It is a story of relationships- The Davis family are up to their eyes in debt - The Stewart family have a daughter who has downs syndrome– The hagarths who’s husband owns a bookmakers shop and his wife is a midwife at the RVI- and the Higginbottom's have a father with the on set of Alzheimer's. How do they cope - read this fascinating story i'm sure you will enjoy.


109. 109

She ate her dinner that her mother had made her as she told her how all the workers at Remploy had clubbed together to buy her a nice wall clock. She hoped that the workers at the home where Iris worked had not bought her clock as well.’

Rose made Margaret her favourite meal of paella with tiger prawns which Margaret ate with gusto. It was nearly six o’clock when they finished washing the dishes together as they always did. Then Margaret helped her mother bring out her clothes she was taking. They placed them in the boot then got in and drove to Iris’s house. Margaret jumped out and ran to the door and rang the doorbell. Iris came out and they hugged each other as her mother looked on. She could see the love that they had for each other and a tear came to her eye. Iris brought out the bags she had packed and her mother and father came out to see her off. Elsie came out too from across the road.

“I hope that you will both be happy together said Elsie as Iris kissed her mother and father and told them that she would give them a ring once they were both settled in.

“Well this is it Iris said Margaret.’ They got into the car together in the back seat as Elsie got in with her friend and they drove to Whitley bay.

Rose told Elsie that she’d kicked Chris out of her house. Elsie laughed and told her that she didn’t think that she had it in her.

“I didn’t think I had it in me too Elsie but for once I stood up for myself. My daughter has given me the strength.’ I mean I’m now going to be on my own apart from the dog; I know but at least there will be me and I can come and go as I please.’

Good because I was going to ask you come to Bamburgh with me and we can take the dogs too.’

“I will miss Patch said Margaret but they won’t allow pets in the flat.’

“Don’t worry you can come for dinner with Iris and you’ll see him then.’

 “I guess so.’   

When got to Edwards Road Elsie and Rose helped them into the flat and had a good look around.’

“This is lovely Margaret said her mother as Margaret made them all a cup of coffee.

They sat talking for an hour before Elsie and Rose said goodbye to the two young women.

Rose felt a lot better knowing that her daughter was going to be alright.’

They drove back to Elsie’s house and were surprised to see an ambulance outside the house. Elsie jumped out and ran to the house to find the paramedics there.

“What’s happened asked Elsie who was now frantic.’

Your father has been leaking blood from his penis we have to get him to A&E immediately. Where are you going to take him?’

“We will take him to the RVI.’

“Can I go with him?’

“Yes of course, can you bring any medication that he is taking?’

Elsie went into the kitchen and picked up the boxes of tablets her father was on then put them into a carrier bag. “I will just tell my friend that I’m going to the hospital.’

Elsie went outside and told Rose what was happening. She offered to take her but Elsie told her that she would go in the back of the ambulance with her father.’

“Give me a ring then Elsie when you get back home.’

“We could be there hours, you know what it’s like in hospital now.’

“Well ring me anyway once you find out what’s wrong.’

“I will Rose and thanks.’

Rose drove away as Elsie’s father was wheeled into the ambulance.

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