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MarySmith’sPlace – 5 minutes on the telly

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I am so pleased to reblog this post. Mary Smith, a writer and blogger I have come to admire, was featured on television with Keith Kirk, the coauthor of her book “Secret Dumfries”. It was lovely to watch. The book is available on Amazon. Enjoy the show. 😊

Mary Smith's Place

A couple of months ago when Keith Kirk and I were launching Secret Dumfries we were thrilled to be invited to be filmed on ITV’s popular programme Border Life.

Border life

Of course, the programme could not be seen to advertise our book. There was a mention of a new book out but I don’t think they even gave its name.

Despite initial nerves (mine anyway, don’t know about Keith – he seemed very relaxed), we had a fabulous day. Presenter Lori Carnochan met us with cameraman Paul Robinson at Crichton Hall, formerly the Crichton Royal Lunatic Asylum. Here we explored the basement with its fantastic wine cellars where the wealthy patients kept their wine supplies. And debated the mystery of the ‘secret tunnels’.

Camaraman Paul, had me and Lori walking down the stairs umpteen times, and another umpteen times to walk along the corridor before he was satisfied he had the…

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#FFE – An Old Adage About Children

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Image Courtesy of Pixabay

On this rainy day, I was inspired to write something in response to Fandango’s February Expression #5:

Children should be seen and not heard.


Growing up with three siblings had its challenges and its rewards. When we were younger, we always had each other’s backs. That may have changed somewhat in our teen years, but as young children we would blatantly lie to keep each other out of harm’s way.

My dad was a big guy with a deep bass voice. When he called us by first and middle names, we knew trouble was afoot. It was best not to poke the bear.

I remember on one particular occasion we had ‘company’ and we knew to be on our best behavior. We were living at my grandmother’s two story house at the time. On this particular night, one of us got the bright idea we should just gather a few things to take upstairs and play with so as not to disturb the adults. We knew to be quiet and not give Dad any reason to intervene in our behavior — especially not while company was there! Children should be seen and not heard was the unspoken law of the land.

Upstairs, we had acquired the base of my grandmother’s glass percolator. We were very engaged mimicking the entertaining going on downstairs. All was well until someone decided our imaginary coffee needed some cream and sugar. The glass marbles acting as stand-ins for the sugar hit the bottom of the glass vessel and we heard the sound of glass cracking. The web-like crack spread across the entire bottom of the coffee pot.

Together, the four of us decided the best course of action was to carry the percolator back downstairs and return it to the kitchen. We huddled together so as to camouflage the evidence. We were stealth-like and no one made a peep. Once returned, we felt in the clear and started back upstairs.

“You kids come here right now.” We knew the voice and we knew the tone. We each backed down the stairs to face our father — all in front of company!

So much for children should be seen at not heard.