Sheila’s Story – A village in County Durham

This is the farm-house where I spent many happy days as a child. It wasn’t my home, but it felt like it was at times. My mum was employed as a housekeeper. It was a lovely warm place.  The large family that lived here had a dog called Simon. A black Lab. I used to sit by the stove, in the warmth of the kitchen, snuggled up next to Simon.

The family who lived in this house was very good to my mum, they treated her more as an equal than an employee and we felt like we were part of the family. It took my mum a little longer to be accepted by the rest of the villagers as she was going through divorce. In a small village in County Durham, in the early sixties, that was quite a scandal.

There weren’t many young people living in that village, so I didn’t have many playmates. I spent a lot of time alone. I used to walk Simon, the black lab. I would mix with the farm workers, who always had time for me.

I often went for long walks on my own, picking mushrooms, which flourished in the  field where the cow grazed.

I loved to sit in the field next to our house and imagine I was in fairyland.

This wasn’t difficult because the field was full of cowslips, milkmaids, soldiers buttons and  cowslips, to name but a few of the wild flowers that bloomed in spring and summer each year.


Soldiers Buttons


The other thing that made it easy for me to imagine I was in Fairyland, was the light that flitted around that field at night. I tried to see it during the day, but it was never there. At night, from my bedroom window, I saw it often. 

The light wasn’t bright, but it was there, dancing across the field leaving ribbons of pink in its wake. The dancing light made me think of ‘Tinkerbell’ from the Peter Pan, and I wished I could fly. It was a happy light and when I saw it I didn’t feel so alone. I wish I could still see it now.
To read more about Sheila and her adventures growing up, click on the links below and read my two short stories.

These book are available in paperback and as E-books in France, Italy, Spain and Germany as well as the US and the UK.

Follow me on Facebook  for updates on my upcoming novel ‘Dead of July’, a story about a Sheila in her mid twenties, and the trouble she got into in 1982 whilst married to a British Solder living in Germany.


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