Back in my young days… we raced home from school and once we were through the front door three things happened.
- The aroma of Mammy’s cooking set the taste buds to overdrive.
- Realisation struck that your bladder needed attention, and as you took the three strides to reach the stairs….
- You removed your coat and hung it over the knob at the end of the bannister rail before racing up the stairs two steps at a time to the smallest room in the house. If you were in luck there was no queue. Alas, some days the door was locked from the inside, so the waiting outside involved dancing steps far better than you ever saw with Riverdance accompanied by many choruses of: ‘Hurry up! Hurry up, I can’t wait!’ Oh the pain, I can feel it now!
I wonder if that was how Irish dancing started?
If mammy was busy or distracted the mound of coats built up at the end of the stairs, but mostly the cry rang out “Hang up your coat properly” and we had to go back upstairs to our rooms with the outdoor stuff. We did, like most homes back then, have a Hallstand. It had hooks for coat hangers and for hats. There was also a little compartment with a hinged lid and for some reason The Royal Liver Assurance books, for the 1d a week policies were kept there. It was also the home for gloves and wooly hats.
Our home which housed eight of us, had less storage space than your average one or two bed apartment nowadays. Mind you we had fewer clothes and personal belongings back then. The beds were on legs so shoes were stored under them. I was reminded of this the other day when I saw this on the road from Ballymena, near the Battery:
At least it gets rid of the smell!
Yes they are shoes!