' 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.


9. 9

“So he bats for the other side does he.’

“Interesting, I wonder what the authorities would think about that then if they knew one of their staff was a fudge packer.’

“Mam, said Irene blushing.’

“Whey,’ that’s what he is, isn’t he.’ Any way what are you doing tonight?’

 “Carol Asiamah my friend is coming around.’

“Well I’ve left you some money to get you and Tom something from the chippy.’

“Are you going to the bingo again mam?’

“Aye I won last night so I’ve got a few bob left. I had to give your father something for his dinner an aal but tomorrow we will be having a feast in here.’

“There was a knock at the door.’

That’ll be Christine love, I better go, or I won’t get a good seat.’

“Good luck mam.’

Jenifer hurried down the passage then saw her friend waiting, they were down the path and up the street in a flash.

Irene sat on the sofa after turning on the television. When Carol Asiamah came they liked to watch “Crossroads, then Emmerdale farm. followed by Coronation Street where the Ogden’s, Stan and Hilda were at loggerheads with the Duckworth’s, Jack and Vera, young Terry had got himself involved and all hell was let loose in the house. Irene liked to watch the show as she felt it was so near to real life as you could get it in a family household. Later that evening both Carol and Irene sat laughing as the comic antics of both Vera and Hilda had them rolling about on the sofa.’

In the break Tom came home and asked where his mother was.

“She’s gone to the bingo; she’s left money to get some chips for us.’ “Get Carol a bag an aal would you.’

“Why can’t you go?’

“Because we’re watching Corrie that’s why.’

“I hope there’s some bread to make a chip butty with.’

“Here get a loaf from the corner shop on your way and get a bottle of American cream soda for us.’

“Will there be enough to get everything.

“Here there’s a pound that should be enough with the money mam left and I want my change.’

Tom took the money then raced up the street to the shop on the corner of Burt Avenue.

He walked into the shop looking around he saw that Florrie Armstrong was busy talking to Helen Iverson. He walked along the aisles stuffing Cadbury’s mini rolls into his pocket and two packets of cheese and onion crisps. He picked up a Sunblest loaf and a bottle of pop that Irene wanted made by Barrs.

“Hello Thomas is that all you want she asked as she did a quick calculation on a piece of paper but Tom beat her to it with the answer.

“Clever bugger isn’t he said Helen as Tom took his change than headed out the door to the chip shop. He was half way up the street when he opened the crisps that he’d stolen and began to eat them noisily as he went into the chip shop.

Hi Tom,’ what will you be having?’

“Three bags separate Mrs Ellis and a fish with batter please.’

 “I saw your mother going up the street earlier.’

“Aye she’s gone to the bingo again.’

“She was there last night wasn’t she?’

“Aye, she must have won.’

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