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 Paintings & writings by GlescaPal admin gal Nell, London, England..        





Paintings & writings by GlescaPal, Nell...............oor Helen.

Helen Cairney was born in the Sufferin' General and lived in Elderpark Street Govan.
She moved to Kinning Park (McLean Street) when she was 4 years old after her
Mammy & Daddy divorced. 
She then flitted to dear old Bridgeton (Mill Street) when she was about 10 years old and
then from there to Barrowfield Street, Baltic Street and Garvald Street respectively.
She has lived in London since 1969. Marrying her sweetheart John Ross in 1974.
Hobbies are playing the guitar. painting and of course bletherin' oan GlescaPals.




 Nell's Childhood memories ...... a hut in Carbeth.
Ah only went oan hoaliday twice as a wean wance tae Bon Accord in Aberdeen wi mah school, and this wan, ah wid hiv been aboot 10 at the time.

We hid never been oan hoalidy, except fur days oot at Saltcoats, Troon, Stephenson etc, so when ma Mammy says, we hiv goat a hut at Carbeth fur a week, she said a week bit it wiz only fae the Monday tae the Friday coz the bloke that owned the hut wanted it fur the weekend, ah wiz over the moon. We urr gaun fur the furst week of the fair she says, bit this wiz only May, how wid ah survive another two months, when ah wiz burstin wi excitement (ah hasten tae add, no fur a pee,) already.

Fur the next few weeks, Jessie and me wurr full of Carbeth this, Carbeth that, we hid been telt we wid be sleeping in bunk beds, so we argy bargied aboot who wiz getting the tap bunk fur weeks. It goat tae the point where ma Mammy says
“if ah hear another wurd aboot bunk beds and Carbeth yiz wulny be gaun, ahll pack yiz aff tae ma Maws and we’ll go oorsells,”
Efter that we could only argy in whispers in oor bed at night. Ahd say “Ahm hivin the tap bunk”
Jessie wid say “Naw yi urny”  
Ahd say “Aye am urr”
Jessie wid say “urny”
Me “urr”
Jessie “urny”
Oan the Seturday afore we went ma Mammy took us doon the Gallowgate tae a big warehoose department type of shoap at the corner of Charlotte Street and the Gallowgate, canny mind the name of it, anyway we goat a new froak each, a perr of shoarts and two wee sloppy joes, and a cardigan each. We went tae the shoe shoap and we goat a perr of white sannies each. Then back tae the Main Street and Galls fur vests, knickers and soacks, ma Mammy says that wid dae us cos we could take some auld claes tae play aboot in and take oor wellies tae. By this time the excitement wiz at fever pitch, we couldny wait, we hid never been oan a proper hoaliday afore, so we were full of speculation aboot whit the hut wid be like.

Finally the day came, we aw goat in the mussel and whelk van and aff we went. When we arrived it wiz aboot tea time so we hidty go straight intae the hut fur oor tea, lookin back noo it wiz very basic, but tae us weans it wiz like Snow White’s cottage in the forest. It wiz basically two rooms wan wi a double bed, a sideboard, a table and an assortment of chairs and pull doon couch, and a wee room wi the bunk beds and a single bed, there wiz ma Mammy and Fitzy, mah “Aunty” (ma Mammy’s pal) Sally and her boyfriend John O’Brien and Jessie and me. Aw the adults slept in the big room and Jessie and me hid the wee wan tae oorsells. There wiz wan electric light in the middle of the ceiling wi a wee shade oan it. Nae running water and a wee gas stove thingy, bit ma Mammy worked miracles oan that, we hid fried breakfasts, and hoat suppers every night and a piece at dinner time. Ma Mammy says, at least its clean, but that never stoaped her and Sally fae cleaning it fae end tae end anywiy. Nae toilet except the bushes.

There wiz loads of other huts aw different shapes and sizes bit maist of thame wurr green wi a black roof, as wiz oors, some of thame hid running watter and a kind of toilet, bit aw that didny matter tae us, as long as there wiz plenty of ither weans fur us tae make pals wi, we wurr happy as Larry, and as is the wiy of weans afore the day wiz oot we hid made loads of pals. Wan night Fitzy made a wee fire ootside and we pit big totties oan it, best totties ahv ever tasted, wi a big lump of good butter oan it, oan account of us bein oan hoaliday, we never usually goat good butter. Ah kin remember gaun tae get watter, and it wiz always cool and fresh, ahhhhh Scottish water. Ma Mammy hid brote wee tins of cremola foam and we wid hiv cups of that when we wurr thirsty nae glesses in thay days. We went exploring roon aboot aw day long, playing endless games, laughing and whooping. Quite near there wiz a wee stream and we tried tae catch fish, never caught any, don’t know whit ah wid hiv done if a did, wid hiv been feart tae touch it. Set up a swing oan a tree and swung ower the wee brook, fell in merr than wance. Swimming costumes oan and jumpin in the watter wooping wi delight, there wiz a home made swimming pool made fae dammin up the nearby stream..

Oan the night afore we left, Fitzy went oot and came back wi fish suppers fur us awe and Jessie and me goat a hale fish each and a bag of chips atween us, ah kin taste that fish supper noo, it wiz delicious, We wurr then scrubbed clean wurr faces shiney and tingling fae the sun and oor new froaks and pristine white soaks and sannies and a ribbon in oor herr, and oor we cardigans and wurr then took tae the pub and hid a gless of lemonade and watched aw the big folk hivin a laugh and singing, some of the men dressed up as women, it wiz hilarious tae us weans.

By the way mah argument that ah should get the tap bunk wiz poo pood by ma Mammy who declared that we wid hiv turn aboot, and that’s whit we did wi oor lips trimmelling.
That’s how ah remember it anywiy, a smashing holiday, and a chance tae see the countryside, bit never really appreciated the beauty of the scenery, too busy enjoyin masell, playing Tarzan, Whoo hoo Whoo hoo hoo, and exploring like David Livingstone and me and Jessie frightening the life oot of each other telling ghost stories in the pitch dark room at night.
Afore we knew it, it wiz time tae come hame, ma Mammy said we could come back the next year bit we never did.
Aw ra Best


I'd like tae be a poet

I'd like to be a poet
and write the sweetest words
But ahm rubbish and ah know it
and my rhymes are fur the burds

but I will keep on trying
to find the romance in my heart
To feel my senses flying
To suffer for my art

So Keats or Burns I'll never be
Nor Yeats from fair Donegal
The only consolation thats left for me
is that ahm nearly as good as Mcgonagle

When a Wiz a Wean

When ah wiz a wean
The world wiz quite plain
and ma worries wurr aw aboot dainties
bit as ahv goat aulder
and the neighboors urr "caulder"
The worlds no as nice as its painted

When ah wiz a wean
Ah never felt pain
Ah grazed knee, a cut oan the fingurr
"Stoap that daft greetin" Ma Mammy wid say
"Urr ahll gie ye something tae greet fur"

When ah wiz a wean
Ah hid a shoap o ma ain,
Roon the back, wi a boax fur a coonter
We hid tin cans fur peas
and we hid clabber fur cheese
while the boays wurr a military joonta

When ah wiz a wean
The boays wurr a pain
They spiled aw oor games wi their antics
They ran aw aboot
wi ah howl and a whoop
and, made aw the lassies go frantic

When ah wiz a wean
The world wiz ma ain
And we wandered all over the city
Wurr armpits wurr oxters
Wurr big fish wurr doacters
But its aw different noo, merr's the pity

Aye, when ah wiz a wean (sigh)
wid ah go therr again?
Aye sure,: "like ah shot oota gun"
cos in spite of the bad
the tragic and sad
The people wurr friendly and fun





  2nd Aug. 2007, GlescaPal, Nell, London, England
  this is a photy of ma Mammy, Jessie Cairney (nee McKay),
  her second married name was Fitzsimmons.
  This photy was taken not long before she died, 2nd Aug.2000
  I still miss her every day......




 Dad James Wilson Cairney

Born  in Southern General, Glasgow
30 Aug.1929

This photo taken when he was serving in Palestine
with Highland Light Infantry in1947/1948.

James W Cairney .. HLI



Journey with my Father

With heavy heart I sit on the train
Speeding North to Glasgow
I glance at the rack, my package safe
Speeding North to Glasgow
His last wish to fulfill 

He would have laughed at my sorrow
Speeding North to Glasgow
He would have said try to see the funny side
Speeding North to Glasgow
But I couldn't

The train gave a lurch 
Speeding North to Glasgow
My package fell and landed at my feet
Speeding North to Glasgow
I knew it was him

I laughed out loud
Speeding North to Glasgow
This was typical of him
Speeding North to Glasgow
Always joking

It was heavier than I imagined
Speeding North to Glasgow
Considering it was just ashes
Speeding North to Glasgow
I saw the funny side and laughed again.

And I knew he would have liked that
Speeding North to Glasgow
The train shuddered to a halt
Speeding North to Glasgow
He was home

© copyright, GlescaPal Nell
Jim Died 7th February 2007

webpage designed Aug.2004 updated 2011

see Nell's page2


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