Sitting in my riser recliner recently I thought “if I could bring back time” would it make any difference? Probably not much realistically, but I did have a little ‘light bulb moment’. We had been to an appointment at my Sleep Apnoea clinic (what a fantastic job they do in looking after me!) and from there we went on to a local garden centre.

Whilst we were wandering around the inside displays there was a food section. In there I happened to notice a jar of Pickled eggs and suddenly I did bring back time! 1962 to be precise, a friend and I who both worked at the Birmingham Co-op furniture store in the centre of Birmingham had a week off. I had just got my very first car, an Austin A55 shooting brake, that looked similar to the one below. It was a very old one!

Austin A55 shooting brake

It had a three-speed column gear change and a hand brake that didn’t work very well. The roof leaked slightly but if the rain was heavy you got very wet!

Holiday Time

Despite all that the two of us, both 18 years old, decided we were going on holiday. Hugh had contact with someone who had a caravan in Norfolk we could borrow for nothing. Now, this was nearly 60 years ago way back in 1962 and we were young and naive. The caravan was old and wrecked, (a bit like I am now!). Driving from Birmingham to Snettingsham in Norfolk in the days before motorways or even decent roads took a lot of time. It was dark by the time we got there and the caravan was on the side of a field.

As I started to get our stuff out of the car Hugh went to open the door. I heard him cursing as he tugged at a very stiff door, one final pull and the door just came off in his hands. That was the start of a very funny holiday, well it seems like it now as if I could turn back time!

How did the pickled Eggs come into the story?

When we eventually woke up the next morning we discovered the only good thing about the area was the pub at the end of the road! The weather was bad but we managed to get there for opening time which I think was about midday. Having not eaten since the afternoon before we were both hungry. In the pub, the locals looked at us as if we were from outer space let alone from Birmingham.

We got our first pints in and asked about food. Only to be told that the ‘Missus’ had gone to Kings Lyn on the bus to do the shopping. So no food until later on, but we could have crisps and pickled eggs if we wanted.

Now neither of us had ever heard of let alone had pickled eggs. After a couple of pints and a few packets of crisps though we were happy to try anything. to be fair they tasted lovely, home down by the lady who ran the pub with her husband apparently. Now we had to leave the pub at 2 pm, none of this 24 hour opening back in those days, so back to the caravan for asleep.

Food and Fun

Later in the evening when the pub was about to reopen we stood on the doorstep ready! first pints in hand by just after 6 pm and a proper meal ham egg and chips. Eventually, the locals started to talk to us and even asked us if we wanted a game of bar billiards. Never heard of it we said! Taken through to the other room which was reserved for the locals we saw this!

bar billiards table

There are variations on the layout of tables but I tell you what, back in 1962 this was more compulsive than any modern computer game! The locals taught us how to play and took some money off us, well for the first night anyway.

The pub as all back then closed at 10-30 and we staggered back to the caravan. This time Hugh, drunkenly, managed to pull the door off again but it landed right on top of him. I just climbed over it and left him lying there. He did eventually manage to get out from under the door and between us, we somehow managed to jam it shut.

The rest of the week was spent between the caravan and the pub. By then of the holiday we had managed to beat all of the locals at Bar billiards and had eaten all of the pickled eggs. I wonder what would make you think If I could turn back time! Would it be pickled eggs for you?

Sometimes, I will tell you more stories about me and that wonderful car! particularly about the bench-style front seat. It was almost as comfortable as our warwick recliner chair.