3 March 2000

WINNING

LETTER

MY husbands clothes have a preservation order on them. They are like wattle and daub, literally held together with farmyard muck. The pockets, which used to be the first part to wear out are nowadays the best part, because he has no use for them to hold money, hes penniless or so he tells me!

His hat is another "designer" thing from the past. Market day is like Salvation Day here. The bundle is grabbed for washing while it stands vacant.

The "hat" is the only one hell wear so it gets laundered in his absence, placed on a gatepost to mould it into shape and to hasten its drying process. It is then placed on top of an old cheese grater and stood over the heated top of the Rayburn so that it is ready for milking time at 4 oclock. I cant decide if it holds all the brain power or if milk production would cease without its presence.

The dog used to lie on the pile each night but of recent she scratches them all onto the floor and now begs to come into the other room well away from them.

I promised myself I would burn them all on 31 December and kit him out in some of our sons cast-offs, but I had the flu and the clothes had a reprieve.

They are now even more

combustible so by the time

you read this they may have exploded by themselves.

Mrs Joyce Hayward

Manor Farm, Tetchill Moor, Shropshire.