• Vol. 03
  • Chapter 04
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Laugh? We used to be almost hysterical. Meal times were our favourite. We’d sit down at the old kitchen table, a hearty meal in front of us, and we’d talk over the events of the day, and there was always something to laugh about. Ma and Pa would see the funny side of everything - animals getting loose, washing flying off the clothesline, antics of their children. No-one I knew was happier at home than us. We all brought friends back after school to play in our yard because they all loved it - the crusty bread speed thickly with creamy butter and jam, the water fights, my parents’ stories. They were in love with each other all their life, and they had plenty to spare for us kids, and anyone who crossed their paths.

That photo? That was one of their favourite jokes and caused a chuckle every time they passed it hanging in the parlour. The young man from the city, on holiday taking photos of country folk, stopped and asked if he could take theirs - a typical farming couple. They posed themselves, in clean clothes and their new fork, serious as they could manage, and he was delighted. Shows the hard life of good folk on the land, he said, and sent them a copy. They were fit to burst telling the tale later, assuming the grave faces and the tragic pose. Only the family could detect the slight twinkle in the eye, the imminent shake of the shoulders, as the rumble of laughter tried to escape.