What follows is a short story from Rosemary’s past. After talking with her, I have taken our discussion and turned it into a series of small stories highlighting the incredible life that she has led. Direct quotes from our discussion are highlighted in quotation marks. All else is a retelling written by yours truly.
Before we move on to the year-long process that was the move to America, let us take a step back and look at a few highlighted moments during Rosemary’s time in England. After all, this would be the last time she would settle on English soil.
Nobody knew this of course, but America was to be the last big move. The last big move and the first big family split. For the first time in her life, Rosemary’s children would be spread out around the globe.
But I digress. For now, let’s go back to Scotland. It was the highlands. Mellon Udrigle to be precise. The northwest coast.
In true Rosemary and Bill fashion, the duo had found out about the place because they knew someone who knew someone and that someone had a place big enough for a ginormous family.
“I don’t remember how it was all arranged. I think the aunt lived in one of the little houses and the one they let was just along the road.”
Whatever the details of their encounter with the place, it was a week Rosemary would never forget.
“it was a delightful place. It was about I don’t know how many feet from the beach but it was a lovely big sort of harboury kind of beach, you know. No ships or anything. Small fishing boats. These sheep were [spread out over the fields] and there was a little road that ran in front of all these houses and the sheep just wandered across.”
These are sheep that did not move when you drove past. You had to inch your way through the flock – what’s a gathering of sheep called? A baaa? Anyway.
“You had to dig your own peat if you wanted to have a fire in the evenings.”
We are, of course, talking about the north of Scotland. Two of the kids did the digging while two walked to the end of the road to fill the buckets of water. It kept them busy and meant they slept well at night.
The view was spectacular. At low tide a vast stretch of beach was accessible. At high tide there was still enough to play all sorts of games. Rosemary could watch her kids from the kitchen window.
It was perfect. A moment to remember some forty to fifty years later.
Stay tuned for more stories from the life of Rosemary. Please note: these stories will not necessarily hold any chronological grounding. They are designed as snippets of understanding into the life of Rosemary and while some will hold chronology, others may not.
Photo Credit: The photo in the logo was provided by Cassie Szelles on Unsplash. It is a photo of a beaches of Mellon Udrigle, Scotland. If you would like to see more of their work, click here.