Leah Francis : Finding the Way contents


Aunt makes a banjo out of elastic bands and cardboard. Gran teaches me to find things on the floor. Grandad makes me a wooden train on big wooden wheels. A swing. Cedrick Keith cohen says fight for light. Sunday School: smell the colour.

"I want this young lady to have a seat!"

Given tricycle, scooter – Elva.

Walking to church gate and Napper's Corner.

Stealing money from till. Buying toys from papershop. Stealing four shillings instead of twopence.

Nothing to do on mother's day at Sunday School because teacher away. Aunt and fm^ said nothing.

Fattling shutters and deaf children at boarding school. 25 beds in dormitory.

Scratching and pinching.

Tearing up books from Father Christmas.

Pram and stroller. Piano accordian, drum, xylophone. Piano.


Little cakes and blistered hands.

Twirling the swing.

Learning to print.

Local brownies.

Clothes sense.

Match nights with Elva - lighting matches in the back lane.

Sisters, on the Western Plains.

Travel:? How come this model moves?

Will the post cross the road with me? People show me where things are but without clues to locate them, I can't find. a

Descriptions difficult to recall.

Church collections: nobody hands plate: folding money. Don't hear plate pass because God means me to keep it?

Mistaken women for man: Elizabeth Smith and women in creative writing.

Joyce's eightieth: not asked. Peter's wedding etc. not flower-girl: can't walk straight. but Mary's bridesmaid.

I might be someone's skeleton in the cupboard – Miss Doran. If you come to light, might hurt someone. Mother will probably turn up if you are successful: Doran.

God wouldn't like it if both parents blind.

In the pictures. Blind but big hearted.

Cleaning shoes and belts and badges for brownies

Dirt all over when I went from St. John's Road to teachers club in Sussex Street.

Didn't mind the polishing, but always ended with brown polish on my clothes, arms, nose and face.

Should two blind people marry? Have children. Reading Julius Caesar while watching the movie.

Funeral of Pamela's father: latin mass, Pamela's howling, shovel after shovel of soil landing on the wooden coffin.

My garden of sweet peas growing on wire, and flocks. Plant for Hurstville Brownies.

Laurel and Hazel Bedford: concerts and beach with them and mother. Curiosity about Jews. Beverly Nestelle baulked at my attending synnagugue. People would be so curious and ask so many questions.

David George: rich descriptions.

Lost in rome after cocktail party and dinner with Sir Cluther McKenzie. Police. Women. School excursion in Rome. Colloseum with American students.

Tagged along with people on tours.

Prevented from moving away from Frankfurt station, though had to wait several hours for train to marburg. Blindenstudienanstalt.

During war tried to take stock from L'Instution National des Jeunes Aveugle. Herr Strehl. Did not succeed.

Analese and Ingaburg, sisters. stayed with Usl's family in marburg. Holder at top of plate on which to rest knife.

Germans meet in turkish baths.

Kids' birthday cakes: copies of things understood. Swimming pool of jelly, fenced with checolate biscuits, ring-shaped lollies for floaties.

Milking a cow.

Keeping Norma Lincoln tied up and giving her potions.

The drawer is light, so empty. It's like testing a tank for water level.

Things: squill candy, penny nestles, man in the park, "Eyes work".

"Have you always been like that?"

Potato queues.

Title: finding the way.

Don't rest on your laurels.

Sayings: empty vessels make most noise; don't tell tales: tell-tale-tit. tittle-tattle.

My feeling: give reasons

Moses: thou shalt not remove the ancient landmarks.

We, the old, must do the compromising.

Blossoms in the Dust: illigitimate children.

Dunlops: fiancee had a glass eye.

Don't glorify the past.

Not: I can't read. I can't see to read.

29th July 2001: Took gold watch for a new battery. Jeweller: Do you want new glass in it?

stolen, rescued, enslaved, punished?

While others engaged by what they see – view, pasers-by, wild life – blind people left with their own thoughts which sometimes turn inward.

Israel: dusty hills? and olive groves. Date palms. Israel's lush farms; palestinian arid, parched land.

Leah, unattractive, undesirable, old, fat, only.

Knew where Aunt was because she had a mannerism: she sniffed every few minutes. Grandfather had a smoker's cough.

Leo constantly clearing his throat.

Some people don't announce their entry to or leaving a room. contrast fred skead and the school inspector.

Teachers college: you can't go to college, or teach.

Choosing marriage house: owner insisted leo look before we paid a deposit. Waving fingers in front of eyes. Being taught colours. Fight for the light.

Pinching and scratching: threatening to cut my fingers but the scissors were blunt.

Going to the pictures on Saturdays: restless and bored: the best part was community singing.

Blind leading the blind:

Knox from Vulgate: Matthew 15.14: Let them say what they will; they are blind men leading the blind, and when one blind man leads another, they will fall into the ditch together." Luke 6.39: And he told them this parable, Can one blind man lead another? Will not both fall into the ditch together?

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