Saturday, 22 June 2013

The Old Kitchen Floor

I remember when we were kids, kitchen floor it sloped,
Sat down at meal times, mother to top end coped.

The old kitchen floors were always laid to enable them to be washed down with a bucket of water, the water then run through a hole in the wall and into an outside grid.
In the 1940's I remember a kitchen on a smallholding, (not our kitchen) it adjoined the cowshed, just open the door on one side of the kitchen, and there were the cows all tied by the neck by a chain to their stalls, all ten of them.
The only snag was that the cowshed was top side of the kitchen and the drain from the shed ran through the kitchen under the table and out the other side in an open gully. Every time a cow passed (pee'd) water it would run swiftly almost under ya feet when sitting at the table, to anyone outside cow keeping would be horrified, but the smell of cow urine is just a normal part of a cowman's everyday smells and has a tendency, I am told, to help to clear your sinuses'.
The dung was wheeled out of the door that led to the fields, the way the cows came in and out, but the liquids took the shortest route and followed the slope of the cowshed and kitchen floors.
 It would not be aloud to happen these days, on health and safety grounds, but it did back then, and clean milk was sold. The kitchen was clean and the gully kept rinsed and clean.
Those cows were often seen back then, being grazed up the wide road side verges tended by the elderly owner who stayed with them. That house and small cowshed have long since been the victims of barn conversion, modernization, what ever you want to call it, but I will always remember it as the house where the cowshed and house were all as one.
Our kitchen at home when we were kids, had blue brick floor and a slope of four inches from top end to the lower corner, the drain hole had been stopped up to prevent rats and mice coming in, and it was mopped rather than sloshed down every day, I remember when mother had her first electric cooker, it had to have a patch of floor levelled up especially for it, other wise the pots and pans on the cooker would have had too much of a tilt East to west.

I remember The Kitchen Floor it sloped.

I remember when we were kids, kitchen floor it sloped,
Sat down at meal times, mother to top end coped,
Kitchen table vinyl cloth, also it did tilt,
Father down one side, safe from anything that spilt.

Always there is one, who's clumsy as a kid,
Put him at the lower end, own mess he is amid,
Tip the water over, or a cup of tea,
It runs down the table, straight into his own knee.

Four of us took it in turns, not to be so clumsy,
Other three would laugh, sat as dry as we could be,
A dam good lesson that it was, with instant results,
 Chair at the lower end, reserved for bumble foots.

Countryman (Owd Fred) 

We live every day of our lives on one slippery slope or another.
Taken from a quote by  the ‘Anonymous Preacher'

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