GETTING IT WRONG WITH UNCLE TOM
– A Norfolk Idyll
‘Now my little man,’ she’d say. ‘Just hull over that dwile. One of them little old goslins have done suffin’ on the tiles, so I’d better tricolate that up all round here else Old Issac, he’ll start a-huckerin’ about me.’
Duffy, the fourteen-year-old hero of the story, couldn’t understand half of it. His parents had sent him from Norwich to stay on a farm out at Glandford for a few weeks, in the summer of 1938. He soon finds his feet in the rural community, but he comes into conflict with some local youths who resent the intrusion of a ‘city boy’ into their world.
In this story David Holbrook draws on his memory of a time when, as a boy, he encountered such characters and their living Norfolk language.