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More Ridin’ Roun’

A Cornish Tale about Our L’il Village by Sal Tregenna.

Well, me deers, I’m sorry I missed ‘ritin’ to’ee las’ weak but th’ twerth o’t iz, I bin ridin’ roun’ agane! Not up to horspittle theze time, thank gudeness, but up to Tresmeer, ‘long wi’ Cuzzen Liza. Ever zince ‘er wuz down ‘long o’ me las’ yur, ‘er bin on to me ‘bout cumin up roun’ an’ I thort I’d take ‘er to ‘er wurd an’ go up vur a vew daays. Nurse wuz gain off vur a vortnights hollerday, an’ Vather zed I’d bedder go th’ zame time an’ laive’n in paice an’ quatteness! Mary Ann zed ‘er’d cook up a mite vur’n, an’ zee that ‘e dedden starve, zo I made up me mind to take th’ bull be th’ ‘orns, an’ go. But I wadden gain git away zo aizey, arter all. Tony screeched like a blessed witneck when ‘e vound out wot wuz on, an’ ‘e zes to me, “If you’m gain up to ‘Smeer to stay, Gran, I’m gain, too. You zed you’d take me vur more pick-nicks, an’ you heb’n den it. I’m gain wi’ you, Gran!” “But you can’t go away like that an’ laive li’l Joan be ‘erzel’,” zes ‘is Ma. “I axed ‘er to cum yur to stop wi’ ee’ vur company.” Joan is Mary Ann’s cuzzen’s li’l cheel, vrom up to Plymouth, an’ ‘er’d a’got ‘er down purpose vur company vur Tony droo th’ hollerdays. “Well, if Tony goes wi’ Gran,” zes Joan, “I’ll go, too, an’ us’ll all be company together.” “My deer days!” zes I, “I dunno wot cuzzen’ll zay to that, I’m sure!” But Cuzzen was delited, ez it terned out, an’ off waint th’ dree o’ us in th’ motor one Munday aivmen, wi’ two gurt porkmangles vull o’ clain cloas, an’ th’ cheldren vull o’ eggzitemint. Net that I wuz mutch bedder mezel’, vur I ‘ad’n bin up roun’ there zince I wuz a cheel, an’ twuz like gain ‘ome to me. Coarse, I’ve tould Tony purty menny tales ‘bout th’ gran’ things that ‘appened “when Gran wuz a li’l mite o’ a maid,” an’ ‘e wuz jist ez eagur ez I wuz to zee all th’ deer ole plaaces again, “Smeer Stashun whare I wuz born to, an’ th’ skule up to Dree ‘Ammers whare I sterted skule, an’ th’ li’l shop rite opperzite whare I used to go vur a ha’perd o’ sweets!
Th’ vust mornin’ us wuz there Tony an’ Joan wanted to go pickin’ blackberries, so us tooked a jug an’ waint away up droo th’ vield behind Cuzzen’s houze. When us got up th’ top they looked out auver th’ haidge an’ zeed a binder out there in a cornvield, zo out they goes like two cats. I ‘ad’n got no opshun but to volley ‘em, an’ a purty tussle I ‘ad to clem thikky haidge. Us ‘ad’n bin there more’n vive minnits avore ‘long cums a man laiden’ two hosses, an’ Tony vorgot all ‘bout th’ blackberries then. All ‘e wanted wuz to zee th’ masheen go! ‘E made vriends wi’ th’ Varmer in no time, an’ when ‘e axed’n wot ‘e wuz caaled, ‘e zed, “Hev’ee ever yurd tel o’ Ole King Cole, zenny?” “Iss,” zes Tony, “be you he?” An’ then ‘e cums tarin’ vore to me like a mazed thing to tell me ‘e’d vound Ole King Cole! Us bide there all thikky mornin’ in th’ corn-vield, an’ nex’ mornin’ us waint out agane to zee th’ binder wi’n, one to a time, th’ las’ two roun’s!
Nex’ day us waint out moochin’ roun’ down to Splatt, an’ vore roun’ th’ Stashun, an’ us aunly got ‘ome in time vur denner. In th’ arternune us all waint up to Overton Villa to tay, an’ a gran’ time us ded hev, to be sure. Th’ cheldern wuz terrable tooked up wi’ th’ li’l black dog, an’ all th’ trecks Miss Symons made’n do. Ever zince then Tony bin axin’ vur a dog that can salute, an’ zay ‘is prayers! Twuz a terrable ‘ot day thikky day an’ when us zot-up to table Cuzzen terned up ‘er sleeves!  ‘Er looked nashun wurkish, an’ me an’ Missus Symons laffed to zee ‘er. “You look like you main bizzens!” zes I, “An’ if I tackles all th’ gude trade ‘pon th’ table.” Zes she, “I shall hev a brave job, shent I?”
Friday us waint down to ‘Smeer Town to spaind th’ day wi’ zum more cuzzens, an’ us ‘ad th’ time o’ our lives. I wuz abel to tern th’ cheldern looze down there, an’ zet down an’ hev a gude ole yarn wi’ Missus Walters ‘bout ole time. There wuz two cheldren there th’ zame zize ez my pair, zo you can vancy they ‘ad ‘igh jinks ranzackin’ th’ plaace! They ainded up be gain of wi’ Granfer down to ma’sh to vetch rishes! Proper kert-load o’ mischief twuz you! Freddie an’ Tony, an Joan an’ Elsie in the kert, an’ Granfer up in vrent! Zaterday us waint off down to ‘Glith Varm, to zee more relashuns. Master Phillips and Missus and young Ken cum arter us in th’ moter, an’ us waint off in gran’ style. Th’ cheldern ‘ad a gran’ time there too, an’ zo ded I.
Zunday us bide in, an’ rested, to catch our wind vur th’ zecond week! Munday mornin’ th’ cheldern wanted to go down to ‘Smeer Town agane, zo arter denner I waint off once more wi’ ‘em an’ ‘ad anether arternune down on tr’ varm. Th’ cheldern liked it, an’ zoded I! You can’t bai varm-houze vare, me deers, an’ I’ve ait ait more junket an’ craim lately than I hev vur yurs! Tuesday us waint to Badgall to zee more relashuns! Maister Statton vetched us thikky day, an’ brot us ‘ome, too, arter a gude ole day vore there. Tony wuz delited wi’ th’ gurt open chembleys up thikky way, an’ th’ billyses! Everywhare us waint ‘e ‘ad a gude ole round at blawin’ th’ vire an’ cuverin’ th’ place wi’ ashes! ‘E vairly injoyed ‘izzel’ thikky day vore there, an’ ‘e ainded up wi’ bringin’ in an’ ole zosspan an’ puttin’ o’n in ‘mongst th’ ashes in th’ chembley, an’ blawin’ like mad. An’ when us axed wot ‘e wuz ‘bout ‘e zed ‘e wuz makin’ stew vur Christine an’ Joan.
Wednesday Miss Parsons cum wi’ ‘er car an’ tooked us all out to Trussell vur th’ day. An’ wot a day us ded hev to be sure! I declare Tony ‘il never vurgit it! Wot tales ‘e hev told ‘is Ma zince ‘e cum back, ‘bout ridin’ in th’ kert wi’ Richard, an’ ‘ow “Uncle Dennis” sterted th’ gurt hengine vur’n, an’ tooked’n vur a ride ‘pon ‘is moter-bike, an’ catched a baby piggy vur’n to smooth down! “An’ there wuz a deer old pussy wi’ aunly one’heye, Ma.” E’ zed, “an’ a deer li’l white pussy wi’ a bad laig, an’ I ‘one ‘e’s beder be this time, doant you?” In th’ aivmen us zed gudbye to Trussell, an’ Maister an’ Miss Eveline, an’ Missus an’ Miss Marian tooked us ‘ome in th’ motor agane, an’ us stopt ‘pon th’ way vur a chat wi’ Missus Amos out to Hillside House. Thersday us ‘ad a rail ole vashuned outin’ in th’ hoss an’ kert. There wuz Tony and Freddy an’ Elsie an’ Joan, an’ me an’ young Missus Walters. Nuff to vrighten enny hoss, wadden it? But Doxy wadden wurned, net even when Tony would draive! I ded injoy thikky trip, joggin’ along veuin’ th’ country an’ us ‘ad a rail gude day down to Glith Varm. In th’ arternune us all waint down droo th’ vields bezide th’ river, to Redvord Mill, an’ I shawed Tony th’ li’l wood whare I used to play when I wuz a cheel, an’ th’ bridge whare I slipped an’ vaaled in th’ river! Aw, twuz gran’ gain roun’ th’ deer ole vamilyar plaaces, an’ zeein’ th’ deer ole vaaces, too. Zay wot you mine to, me deers, th’ plaace whare you spained yer cheeld-‘oods days iz allus “Home” to ee, Tony ‘ad one terrable misvorchin thikky day! ‘E waint out roun’ th’ bee’ives, an’ sterted ‘is hinvestigashuns, an’ ‘e vound th’ bees dedden like strangurs. I wuz bizzy aitin’ roast duck, an’ I yurd th’ boy scritchin murder! ‘E cum vlyin’ in wi’ a skore o’ bees arter’n! Pore cheel ‘ad zeveral stings ‘too avore. I could nick ‘em off. They wuz in th’ ‘air o’n an’ in ‘is vurs, an’ crawlin’ ‘bout ‘is cloas an’ all. But ha’f a ‘nour arter twuz all vorgot. Us rode away ‘ome agane in th’ cool o’ th’ aivmen, an’ vound Cuzzen cumin away up th’ road mit us. Vriday us all waint down to Stashun to take tay wi’ Missus Frayn an’ Miss Adah. Th’ cheldern wuz delited wi’ thikky outin’ too, cuz they could zee th’ trains in an’ out o’ th’ stachun. Tony bey tould ‘is Ma all ‘bout Miss Adah’s iilies made in li’l purty glasses, an’ ordered ‘er to do th’ zame! Zaturday us cum ‘ome arter th’ best hollerday Iv’e ‘ad in me life, an’ I’m sure me an’ th’ cheldern ‘ll never vorgit it. Everybody wuz kindness itzel’ to us, an’ wot vaists us ded hev, to be sure! Roast checken, ‘ome-cured ‘am, roast duck, an’ every other gude thing! I reckon us shall be cummin’ up roun’ agane anether yur, if all’s well! Tony’s jist cum in, an’ axed wot I’m ‘ritin’ ‘bout, an’ ‘e zes, “Gran,” zes ‘e, “doant vurgit to zend our love to ‘em all up there, to Freddy an’ Elsie, an’ Kenny an’ Christine an’ all th’ Uncles an’ Aunties, an’ to Lloyd Goodman an’ to Ole King Cole, an’ Herbert, an’ Cuzzen Liza, an’ the puppie dog, an’ all the piggies an’ tibbey-sheeps, an’ boo-cows, an’ gee-gees, an’ pussy-cats an’-an’” “An Uncle Fred’s bees!” zes I “No, not to they varmints!” zes ‘e. “But zend it to everybody but they! An’ tell ‘Uncle Dennis’ I’m gain bring me nightshirt next yur when I go to zee ‘e, an’ I’m gain learn to be a henginedraiver an’ wurke thikky gurt hengine.” Well, I don’t think I can add mutch to wot Tony hev zed, ‘ceps that I would like to thank everybody vur all they den to make our hollerday zitch a ‘appy one. To they that looks vore to there ole ledders o’ mine, an’ injoys ‘em. I’d like to zay that it den me gude to knaw that they cheers ‘em up, an’ it makes ‘ritin’ o’ ‘em wo’th while.

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