Normal Service

Well not quite or this post would have gone out at the right time this morning and as it is Monday it would have been a review of some sort, but today I started to feel like I was getting back into the swing of things properly.

I had intended getting stuck in today but I realised I made a major error, the alarm went off this morning and up a sprang, monster fed, scrubbed and dressed for school before I opened my diary to check something and discovered they didn’t go back to school till tomorrow!  Plans for the day scuppered!

So instead the monster has done some cutting and sticking and watching Doctor Who while I have done something productive which didn’t require the need for me to give it my full attention.  One of my resolutions is to start submitting more work to publications so I spent an hour today looking for magazines for possible submission to.  And I have to say I was pleasantly surprised how many of them are actually paying markets, okay they are not going to pay the bills but even a couple of quid somehow adds to a feeling of validation.  Now don’t get me wrong there are amazing magazines like Zest in which I have appeared that do not pay and that does not lessen the thrill of being accepted by them but what the paying market does offer you is the opportunity to stick that cheque (or printed off paypal receipt) right in the face of those family members who think you are wasting your time writing and don’t believe anyone would ever pay you for anything you write.  To non writers paid for work has more validation regardless of the actually quality of the writing or the publication.  I know we all say other peoples opinions shouldn’t matter but hands up if you can honestly say you have never been bothered by at least one loved one who has doubted you?

And speaking of family I spent an hour yesterday doing a little more research on my family tree, no new members but learning a little more about one I can put a face to…

desk (60)This is my great, great grandfather John William Callis and I took a closer look at the information provided by the 1881 census records.

John was 17 and living and working as the servant for a butchers business.  His boss was 25 and had a wife and three small children and they had a general servant, a woman age 20 who also lived there.  You may wonder why I was interested in these other people who were unrelated to me but you will understand in a minute.

originalThis picture is taken on the same road where he was living infact only a few door away from where the actual building would hae stood.  Because I have found the images via google obviously getting pictures of the exact building is a little difficult, however based on the fact all these businesses look to be set out the same way and the buildings are consistent with the type of building you would expect for the Victorian Era I think it is safe to surmise that the one a few doors along from these would have looked the same. Most of the individual businesses only seem to have two windows at the front, here is the rear view…

_46573899_page8cramantcottagesAgain it is not the right number for his home but as can be seen the back does not look any more spacious if anything it appears the houses possibly slope down at the back suggesting even less space.  I would have expected the yard behind the butchers to have been paved with possible an out house or two but looking at the houses it is pretty clear how small they were and for so many people crowded in it is more than likely John would have slept on a pallet in the shop itself.  The contacts he made there would see him in good stead in years to come, my grandma remembers that her grandfather always seemed to have meat to put on the table.

Sometimes it is good to look back and to reflect on the struggles, lives, loves and successes our ancestors faced to allow us to be the people we are today.

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5 comments on “Normal Service

  1. It surprised me while doing the family tree to find people in the workhouse.So many people thrown out of work by the advent of farm vehicles that lessened the need for labourers. I’ve hit so many blocks now I’m following hints on ancestry.com for distant cousins to fill the time. Even in America which has brought up a real melting pot of names.
    So, back to school tomorrow for the youngster and you can put new plans into action. Finding some paying gigs with magazines is a good idea as it’s a poke in the eye for detractors. Let us know when and where you have pieces published so we can follow them.
    xxx Massive Hugs and Good Luck xxx

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  2. You’re a day ahead of yourself. That’s something to enjoy. I love a day that I didn’t expect having ( for the kids anyway.)

    I agree with you about reflecting on where we came from. Having returned to Sydney, where I was born and grew up, I’m passing by buildings that I remember and feeling really good about where I am now and my family 🙂

    Enjoy tomorrow when the kids are at school. My one left at home is enjoying his summer

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  3. Paula, it’s amazing to think of all the interesting stories that our ancestors lived through, many totally lost to history. It’s nice when we can find some, like this one.
    Happy New Year,
    David

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  4. *Raises hand*

    That’s awesome! I wish I knew more about my family, all I know about my great-grandmother is that she was a serf in Sweden, and she was sold into it by her alcoholic father. That’s so cool that you can see the very street he worked on!

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