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16 October 2014

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My Life as a Winklepicker

By Gill Ogden
July 2006, Aberystwyth
A digital story from Shoebox Stories

"I had already been a milkmaid, an actress, model, and teacher. Now, I was the winklepicker's wife. The summer of 1972, I fell in love.

We lived on the beach in a hut made of driftwood. We ate crabs, borrowed potatoes, and winkles.

We swam 'round the corner to hear the seals singing. For two years, every day except Christmas, whatever the weather, we came to the beach at low tide, riding home on the bus, the water from the winkles streaming down the gangway.

In our friend's coastguard landrover, we took them to Birmingham fish market, strange in the city, in our sea clothes.

The business grew; fish, lobsters, moss, pinecones, even pebbles from the beach. Sold to expensive West End florists.

But with one, two, three, four children, needing more than fish, I went back to my first love, the theatre.

Now my children bring together the fishy and the artistic genes beautifully, painting fish, boats and driftwood."

Your comments

"What a wonderful story. I would love to see more of the fishy art of the children of the storyteller...And I need to go look up exactly what a winkle is." Fred Mindlin, Watsonville, California, USA.

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