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Elphinstone Kist   Folk-History, Work

Fishin Memories     by: Lovie, J. Mrs

I wis born in 1915, and bedd at Gardenstown fin I wis a littlin. Fin I wis 14 I vrocht fur Dunbar Fishyaird at the Broch an I wis billeted in ain o their huts. There wis three quines in a crew, ae packer an twa gutters. We vrocht fae sax in the mornin fin the boats cam in until ten or eleyven at nicht. We fulled the barrels wi the guttit fish an satt. As the satt gaed doon, we hid tae top up the barrels. Tae dae the guttin we used affa sherp knives, sae fin we war guttin we hid tae wip cloots roon ilkie finger sae's nae tae cut them.

Fin the fish grew scarcer, us quines hid tae gyang tae North Shields far we bedd in ludgins that war affa basic due tae the poverty at yon time. Syne we meeved ontae Yarmouth an Lowestaft. Gutters hid tae wirk ootside in aa weathers, even durin Winter months fin the sna an frost happit the barrels. Tae see fit we war daein, we hid lichts caad 'bubblies', in ither wirds a kin' o paraffin lamp that pit oot blaik rikk.

Fin feenished, the barrels hid tae be fulled richt tae the tap, syne the cooper cam an covered the barrels. They war merked ready tae sen abroad. Aa us gutters left the skweel at 14. A speecial train fae Macduff tuik us doon tae England an the boat tae Lerwick, thon made us puir quines affa seasick. Fin we got tae Lerwick we hid tae scrub wir huts oot afore we used them. We sleepit in bunks, wi sax quines tae ae hut. Blankets an cookin pots an pans war taen bi wirsels tae the Broch an Lerwick, ye supplied yer ain.

We got beds at the ludgins in England. Caff beds war made eese o, an we hid rare fun fallin the caff inno the bags. We sang hymns fin we vrocht an fishermen aften socht a particular hymn. As wirkers we warna weel pyed. Fin we bedd in the huts we got ten shullins fur maet an twa pence in auld siller fur fillin a barrel.



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