'Soor Plooms and Sair Knees' is an hilarious and moving recollection of the writer's childhood in a small Scottish east coast town during the immediate post-war years. In this warm-hearted, funny, and magnificent portrait, Bob Dewar recalls the community spirit of 1940s Scotland with perfectly balanced nostalgic recollections and glorious illustrations. Touching and illuminating, he brilliantly recalls details large and small, from stand-your-spoon-up Scotch broth, to olive oil bought from the chemist to clean out your ears or to be used as suntan oil. He evocatively recalls a time when poor children wore gym shoes or wellies all year round, when one walked everywhere - peering round corners on the carefully chosen long route to school, watching workers in boilersuits and bike clips sprinting to the factory, hanging about the sweetie shop penny tray planning what to buy on Saturday, hurrying past the fruit shop in case the deadly banana spider rumour was true, or running into school through the boy's gate. Male teachers who smelled of damp Harris tweed and Brylcreem, lady teachers of Californian Poppy with just a hint of Trex.
It was a time of the Sunday family walk wearing the hated tourniquet garters to keep your hand-knitted socks up, tattie holidays, wash day - all day on a Monday - in the outdoor wash house, woollen bathing trunks, small holders, schools' radio, cowboys and coal. Wonderfully unique and richly evocative, this book is an inimitable tribute to a vanished - but much loved - way of life.
Publisher: Birlinn General