…from Marie Antoinette to Docklands Govan… ‘let them eat cake’… and we did…

……the early 1950s in Docklands Govan in Glasgow didn’t boast much in the way of haute cuisine… indeed, given the harshness of life for thousands in the inner cities back then, any kind of cuisine itself was sum’times completely absent… money was scarcer than an honest politician… our family, with four children, myself as the eldest, was no different from many in similar circumstances… it’s amazing what a mother could rustle up in the large pot simmering away on the gas stove, with bits and pieces added to it as the week progressed… potatoes, lentils, barley, bits of corned beef, cabbage, minced beef, onions, carrots and the ubiquitous Bisto Gravy… (Ah..Ah..Ah..Ah… Bisto Gravy’s best by far! went the advertising jingle)… my father worked all sorts of part-time jobs, as did my mother… sum’times cleaning jobs in the houses in the more middle-class areas, where a shilling or two was available for outsourcing a ‘non-working’ lady’s housework… she also had an evening job as a cleaner at the local cake-making factory of Galbraith’s in Govan…

…as I recall, her stint began around 5 o’clock in the later afternoon until around 10 pm…  we children would wait patiently for her return, because often, she was able to bring home a veritable confectionery goldmine… all the cleaners were allowed to take away whatever leftover cakes that were not shipped for delivery and unsold during that day, as these were not allowed to be sold the following day… however, the booty was not carried away from the factory in fancy cake-boxes, nor in any sort of boxes…

…instead, the takeaways were bundled in one conjoined mash-up in plastic bags… eclairs, doughnuts, jam tarts, and creme pastries, all in one enormous melange… did that deter us from tucking-in big-time?... not a bit!… the massive mound of Galbraith’s best leftovers was excavated with great vigour, with nary a thought for dental welfare, nor of potential stomach ache, nor of hyper-sleeplessness from over-inflated sugar rushes… from Marie Antoinette to Docklands Govan… ‘let them eat cake’… and we did… until this day, I still find it difficult to eat just one cake... see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

16 responses to “…from Marie Antoinette to Docklands Govan… ‘let them eat cake’… and we did…

  1. What sweet memories, Seumas! Love the delivery van!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A great recollection of different times. Nice photo too.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Showing my age but on the way home from school the cake shop would sell us ‘1p worth of stales,’ – that day’s unsold goodies. They weren’t stale and they were yum. Whoever heard of eating only one cake? 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ahhhhh memories our treat was a box of broken biscuits from the local Co-op biscuit factory what joy as sometimes we would find a yummy whole one, a special one…:) x

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Mash-ups, of any kind of food always tasted better with a touch of hunger seasoning. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Reblogged this on Have We Had Help? and commented:
    And now, it’s Seumas’ turn to entertain us once more…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I am partial to a bit of cake too. What a lovely memory Seumas. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. That bakery job was a real prize for your mother and the other ladies cleaning there, Seumas. Now you’ve made me hungry for cake. 🙂 — Suzanne


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