My new friend Trisha lives on a farm and loves to feed the birds. She has recently set up a website called Bird Table News which tells you all about the birds that are visiting her garden and the food that Trisha is feeding them. Birdy Trisha, as she likes to be known, has kindly written a story of her childhood memories of living in a rural community. Her memories will transport you back to the 1950’s…
When I was nobbut a lass growing up in a wolds village there were two farms on the main street who milked cows for a living. The two herds of cows were walked through the front street of the village twice a day – from the fields to the milking parlour and back again. The roads were used by tractors, cows, bikes and people then. Cars weren’t masters of the roads as they are today. The milk was taken away in churns. Now both dairy farms have gone, as has the butcher, one village shop and the village pub.
Village life in the 1950’s was lived in the slow lane yet as school children we were kept very, very busy –
Chalking out the lines and playing hopscotch
Playing ball together
Skipping – either with a small skipping rope or with a group – what were those rhymes we sang as we skipped?
Playing in a sandpit in the garden
Playing mudpies with old pans and cups
Putting a collar on the rabbit and taking it for a walk
Playing in a den inside a garden hedge – and listening to birds.
Thinking back to my childhood days I remember how we were told stories about birds that we believed were true. Here are a few things that I remember –
Birds Being Able To Foretell The Weather
- Robins – If robins chirp sadly near the hedge then that means bad weather is coming, even though the day may be bright and sunny at the time. If a robin is seen chirping happily on a topmost twig, even if the weather it bad, this means good weather is coming.
- Pigeons – If pigeons gather on the ridge of a house this means there will be a storm of wind or rain
Who needs the television weather forecast?!!
Birds To Signify Fortune and Good Luck
- Cuckoo – It’s good luck if you have money on you the first time you hear a cuckoo in any year.
- Swallows – We were told it’s lucky if you have swallows building thier nests under the eaves of your house. Bad luck will follow if the nests are disturbed or are left by the swallows.
- Rooks – The same thing was sometimes said about rooks. If there is a rookery near your house then good luck will stay with you. If rooks suddenly leave their nesting site bad luck will follow.
I remember the last bit of folklore about the rooks very well. Nearly every farm had a rookery attached to it. Now I live near a rookery, and as much as they annoy me when they land on my bird table, I would miss rooks and crows as they come in to roost and miss them circling around.
Hope you’ve enjoyed my memories. Trisha.
Childhood Memories By Trisha @ Bird Table News
If you have a farming story, memory or farm visit that you would like to share then please send me your story and I will happily include it on a guest appearance post.