When I grew up, my parents weren’t poor, but we weren’t rich either. My dad and mum both worked hard. My dad worked in a glue factory, where they made extra strong glue. Good stuff if you wanted anything stuck. Mum worked as a school canteen lady. I didn’t like school dinners, and hated them even more if I had to eat them as an evening meal.
That didn’t mean I felt I missed out on anything.
We had a holiday every year, and my mum refused to go to a holiday camp. She said she cooked all year, and wasn’t going to cook while she was away. We had some fantastic guest house holidays, and nights out. We saw live shows, dolphin shows, and I remember drinking strawberry milkshakes and being able to stay up late.
If they wanted to buy me something nice for Christmas, they paid into a club so they could. We had a hamper, which included the turkey for dinner. Although one year mum forgot to take the giblets out and we had sausage and mash instead.
I understood when we couldn’t afford something, and any gifts were made all the more special because they weren’t given freely. One year I had a record player, cassette tape, and radio all in one. For anyone under forty I will say that cassette players were our music downloads of the time.
So yes we were poor, but not where it mattered. I have great memories of my childhood and learnt valuable money lessons.