Document 1613

Conversation 42: Man from Ayrshire, with Italian background, talking about Italy, jobs and Alzheimer's support work

Author(s): N/A

Copyright holder(s): Prof John B Corbett, SCOTS Project

Audio transcription

M608 Okay, erm well thanks very much for talking to me. One of the reasons er, well there were a couple of reasons why I wanted to talk to you, and one was that my Mum said you've you, you know, were an interesting raconteur. Er, but the other one was that er your name's interesting, [CENSORED: Italian surname]. //and er you obviously//
M1163 //Yeah.//
M608 come from Italian background. //Can you//
M1163 //Yeah, I do.//
M608 tell me a bit about that?
M1163 Erm, my father was born in Johnstone, //Renfrewshire,//
M608 //Uh-huh, uh-huh.//
M1163 and my mother, she's Italian.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 Er, f- my four grandparents are all Italian.
M608 Oh right.
M1163 And they all come from the same village in Italy. //The name [CENSORED: surname]//
M608 //Right.//
M1163 is erm a sort of localised name in Italy. //You'll//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 find that each sort o village in Italy's got a name that is erm sort o more pronounced in that area than other //places.//
M608 //Okay then.//
M1163 A couple o year ago we went over to th- visit my Granny, when she was was down the south, and I finished up running out the cemetery crying, because I could see //Giorgio [CENSORED: surname],//
M608 //Oh God.//
M1163 I could see Maurizio [CENSORED: surname], //I could see Amerigo//
M608 //Oh.//
M1163 [CENSORED: surname]. Er, the names o my family, an my gra-, you know, my parents and that, you know, //er but//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 but that's just the way it is in in //south of Italy,//
M608 //Uh-huh.// //I- it and it's the south of Italy?//
M1163 //you know?// Well it's down, well they they come from a village called Sa- San Biagio Saracinisco,
M608 Okay.
M1163 which is approximately twenty miles east of Monte Cassino.
M608 Okay, right, that's where the big battle was //of course, in the War, aye.//
M1163 //Yeah, that's right, yeah, so// you drive by Monte Cassino up the the the superstrada, //and turn off//
M608 //Oh aye.//
M1163 at erm a place called, pass, I forget what it's called now. //I think I'm startin//
M608 //Aye.// //[laugh]//
M1163 //to suffer fae fae memory blanks.// Erm, turn off there and just follow the mountains up. //Then you go into this//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 village at the top o a mountain.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 And that's where the the the parents originally came from.
M608 Okay.
M1163 And my grandfather and grandmother on my father's side, they moved over to to Johnstone in the early nineteen hundreds, //nineteen hundred and two or nineteen hundred and three.//
M608 //Oh right, okay.// //But did you find there was a kind of still a strong link with Italy?//
M1163 //[cough]// From what point of view?
M608 Er, from a family //family point of view. So y- so you were going backwards//
M1163 //For a fa-, yeah yeah yeah.// //We all go back//
M608 //and forwards?//
M1163 and forwards all the time.
M608 Aye.
M1163 My first ever recollection of travel was erm we stayed in Newmains, and originally I was born //and brought up in Newmains near Wishaw,//
M608 //Oh right, okay.// Oh okay.
M1163 and erm going down to Motherwell station and jump on the train, and it took you two full days and one night, or else two nights and one day to get to to Rome station, //going back to erm//
M608 //Oh God, right, so y- you went all the way by train?//
M1163 oh well, maybe train down to London, and then across the Channel, //and at the other//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 side and then you changed in Paris. And I think I was about eight or nine and I woke up this morning and this guy was standing outside on the platform with a machine gun. First day of my life I'd ever //seen a machine gun, this was in//
M608 //Seen a machine gun.//
M1163 Paris, or Bologna, sorry, //sorry, it was Bologna.//
M608 //Bologna?// //Okay.//
M1163 //That was the first// time in my life I'd ever seen a real live gun.
M608 Aye.
M1163 And I was sitting there with the sort o, literally the tongue hanging oot, //and the eyes popping oot//
M608 //[laugh]// //Aye.//
M1163 //guy staunin with this machine gun, it was incredible.// //But that's how we used to go,//
M608 //Aye, so how old were you then?//
M1163 you know? //I wa- I was//
M608 //How old were you then?// //Seven or eight.//
M1163 //aboot seven or eight at the time.//
M608 So did you go there for holidays an //you spent what, you w-? Oh okay.//
M1163 //Oh yeah, maybe three weeks, four weeks ou-, in a year.// //Aye.//
M608 //And you were mixing at that time with, what, Italian kids// //and members of the family?//
M1163 //Well there was very// few Italian kids at that time, because they would be at school,
M608 Oh right. //Okay. Yeah.//
M1163 //you know, and when I would, I would go over.// And then [cough] whether through so-, through erm what's the word I'm looking for here, through coincidence,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 Erm, my wife is Italian.
M608 Oh right.
M1163 And er so obviously we go over to Italy two or three times, //you know, a year?//
M608 //[inaudible]// Yeah.
M1163 Apart frae last year, that was, we only went once last year, //first time for a long time.//
M608 //Uh-huh.// //And do you always go back to the same spot?//
M1163 //So.// To to my wife's place doon the south, or I've got a sister and relations that stay up in Milan on my mother's side.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 So we would either go up to Milan for a wee while, //one//
M608 //Okay.//
M1163 time and the next time, you know, wir sort of main holiday, //we would go down//
M608 //Yeah.//
M1163 down south as I call it. //Cause you're only//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 like five, ten minutes away frae the seaside.
M608 Yeah, it's it's it's a beautiful area.
M1163 You know, and you just go doon there.
M608 When you were growing up, did you have any kind of family traditions that you thought of as being particularly Italian or?
M1163 Well. I don't know, erm, I'm no being, I'm no being biased here, I'm no being ignorant but because you were Italians at that time you were not socially erm one of the boys, //shall we say?//
M608 //Really?// //Is this, what, in Newmains? Aye?//
M1163 //Erm, aye, aye.// Er, I'm I'm no going to use the word, but, and I'm I'm saying this jokingly, but //I'm saying it seriously,//
M608 //Mm, mmhm.//
M1163 and I was in talking to my mate, Joe, we were oot last night for a couple o hours, and er this guy came in, he's Irish, //so he was talking aboot//
M608 //Mmhm.// //Aye, sure.//
M1163 //his sort o his, I says, well I says// when I was growing up I a- I always thought my name was Tally B, because that's all you ever heard, //you know?//
M608 //Yeah.//
M1163 a- and you see all this thing on television at the moment, about this, that and all the other different ethnic minorities, //well I'm sorry,//
M608 //Mm.// //Mm. Oh aye.//
M1163 //the the abuse and this that that my family, no no just my family, the Italians got,// away back in the the thirties, the forties, the fifties, even into the sixties,
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 er er it wasnae very nice.
M608 No.
M1163 Yeah, I made some friends at school but not many, //but, cause I was always the Wee Tally, I was always this, I was always that.//
M608 //Uh-huh. Oh right. Uh-huh.//
M1163 And yo- you just grew up and you accepted that.
M608 Were there many Italians in Newmains, or were you //the only family? Ah. Okay.//
M1163 //No there was only two other families, Italians.// And both o us had, well, both the f-, the the parents had businesses,
M608 Aye.
M1163 you know? But i- it was erm Looking back, I enjoyed it, but it wasnae very nice. //But that that that that was just//
M608 //No, no I can I can understand that, cause I mean a lot of// //Mm. Yeah.//
M1163 //that's just the way it's been all its all its days,// //you know?//
M608 //Yeah.// Yeah. But your family's been here f- from about nineteen hundred?
M1163 Well my grandparents yeah //came over, well my my f- my father's side came over in the early nineteen hundreds.//
M608 //Yeah, right.// Yeah, yeah.
M1163 You know, my mother's parents on bo-, on her side, they never ever, they always stayed on i- in Italy.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 My grandfather on my mother's side, he died in nineteen fifty-four.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 Er so he he died very early.
M608 Mm.
M1163 And my gran on my mother's side, she just died this year,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 in September, and she was a hundred and one.
M608 Good grief, aye.
M1163 A hundred and one years, one month and one day. It was incredible, just one oh one, one one, that was the the day she died, //you know, September.//
M608 //Yeah.// //Yeah, that's amazing.//
M1163 //Aye, it's, you know?//
M608 So when did you come through to Ayr?
M1163 Er, nineteen eighty-th-, four, //aye.//
M608 //And what brought you here?//
M1163 I bought a business down the road, the [CENSORED: business name], it used to be the [CENSORED: business name] Hotel.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 So I've been in business since erm nineteen seventy-three, seventy-three my father sold his business and retired.
M608 What did he do?
M1163 Erm he f- at the end o the day he had a hotel,
M608 Oh right.
M1163 you know, so erm when he sold up and retired, I bought a business in Carluke with my wife.
M608 Okay.
M1163 It was a newsagents,
M608 Oh right.
M1163 er just, we were there for quite a number of years, we wanted to extend the business and the Council wouldn't allow us
M608 Oh right.
M1163 to extend it, so we sold it and I moved back to Newmains and I bought a pub in Newmains.
M608 Okay, so you went from kind of newsagent to pub to hotel?
M1163 Uh-huh.
M608 Oh right, I mean do you find that a difficult transition, I mean, no? //Yeah.//
M1163 //It wisnae, it wisnae a problem in the slightest,//
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 because when I was growing up my father had a chip shop.
M608 Oh right.
M1163 So ever since you were, was it "knee-high" somebody say, //that//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 I was behind a counter, //you know, you were the only general//
M608 //Oh okay.//
M1163 public, you were working away. And then it went fae a chip shop tae a general store
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 tae a licensed grocer's,
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 tae a pub, tae a licensed restaurant then tae a hotel.
M608 Okay.
M1163 So I came through all those stages, working away and //and and doing things.//
M608 //Mmhm. Mmhm.//
M1163 And then when he decided and and sold up, I bought a business in Carluke and it was a newsagent's.
M608 Oh right. //Yeah, yeah.//
M1163 //So fae there on, it's just been a progress, continuation.// //Mm.//
M608 //[inaudible] Must have been a hard life, er the hospitality seems to me always a incredibly// //time-consuming, you're never, you're never off duty.//
M1163 //Well people, yeah.// No, that's it. People say to me, you know, "you're a young man".
M608 Aye.
M1163 Maybe in age-wise I'm a young man, but business-wise or work-wise I feel as if I've worked a long long time, //because we worked seven days,//
M608 //Mmhm, aye.// //Aye. Aye.//
M1163 //you know, even when wir kids were bringing, were getting brought, bringing them up, we were seven days a week.//
M608 Aye.
M1163 You know, so, it was only in nineteen ninety-one when I finished up in my own businesses, and I moved and I wor- started working with [CENSORED: companyname].
M608 Oh aye.
M1163 That was my first time in my life I ever worked five days a week,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 and I was absolutely lost on a Saturday and a Sunday.
M608 [laugh] Really?
M1163 What dae I dae? //It's a Saturday,//
M608 //[laugh]//
M1163 I'm no openin the pub, I'm no daein this, //I'm no daein that,//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 you know, and and it was so strange for months and months and months and months, not working on a Saturday and a Sunday.
M608 Aye.
M1163 And it's just been a sort o levelling off fae there.
M608 Mmhm. Did you find that a difficult er th- thing, er not working for yourself but working for somebody else, or did you find that was easier because you'd more free time?
M1163 Erm it was difficult to the point of view that if you didnae do any w-, I'll no say, work's the wrong word, if you if you didnae conduct any business you were still getting paid,
M608 Aye.
M1163 which was strange, //because if you didnae//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 work and didnae produce nothing, you never got any money, //so you couldnae pay your bills.//
M608 //Aye.// //Mmhm.//
M1163 //But// tae turn round and find out that "Hey I just need to go and talk to people and walk oot. I don't need to sell nothing, //and I'm still getting paid",//
M608 //Mmhm. Aye.//
M1163 you know, that was that was absolutely brilliant, //you know?//
M608 //[laugh]//
M1163 But then, everything's got its good points and its bad points, //depending what//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 way you want to look at it.
M608 Mm.
M1163 If you're self-employed, and I'm saying that legitimately, you tell the tax man what he's getting. //But if you're employed, the tax//
M608 //Aye. Mmhm.//
M1163 man tells you what you're getting.
M608 Aye.
M1163 So if you're quite happy with that, that's fine.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 Cause you could have a car, you can have this, you can have that, and you can claim it back on tax, there there there's tax breaks available.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 So if you're prepared to use that, then you can have a good life, //as long as you're//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 turning the money over to justify it.
M608 Aye.
M1163 But for the other side o the coin, you're paying all that tax out, you're paying this, you're paying that, you're dealing with //staff, you've got problems,//
M608 //Aye. Mm.//
M1163 you've got this, you've got the general public. And th- there's no such a thing as an easy life, //you know, you you've just//
M608 //Aye, aye.// //Aye.//
M1163 //got to work at it and accept whatever it it throws up// //at you,//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 and be prepared to adapt at the time.
M608 Mmhm. Where did you meet your wife? Your wife's Italian?
M1163 Right, my wife erm came over here the day England got the World Cup,
M608 Sixty-six?
M1163 sixty-six, July sixty-six, Scotland got my wife. //My-//
M608 //[laugh]//
M1163 my wife came over from Italy as an au pair.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 And erm at that time it was difficult to come over from any country into Scotland, so the au pair was //the//
M608 //Mmhm.// //Aye.//
M1163 //the easy option or the easy thing to// put doon on a bit o paper to //say that you were coming over.//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 So anyway, she came over to a family in Viewpark, //near Uddingston,//
M608 //Mmhm.// Oh okay.
M1163 erm, and she was working in a chip shop.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 And the first time I ever seen her, and it was nothing at all to do with boyfriend, girlfriend, I was playing football with erm St Bridget's boys' guild in Newmains,
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 and we were playing St Columba's Viewpark, in Viewpark.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 And we beat them but all during the game there was er boys behind the goals, "I'm goin to get you after the game, youse are going to get it", //etcetera, etcetera.//
M608 //Yeah. Yeah.//
M1163 So after the game was finished, obviously the priests walk you back to the the dressing room, an that was fine, but after that, that was you, you were on your //own, shall we say.//
M608 //[laugh]//
M1163 So we kept lookin oot and //lookin oot and we//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 seen this bus comin, so we'd a run to the bus stop. And here, by the time we got up to the bus stop and the bus came doon, it wasnae the bus we wanted, //you know?//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 So two or three of us just ran across the road into the //chip shop to buy//
M608 //Chip shop.// //Aye.//
M1163 //sweeties or something, just to try and, you know,//
M608 [?]Get on[/?].
M1163 er think these guys were all goin to hit us, //you know?//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 So here this girl serving in the shop, she couldnae speak any E- English.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 So a few months later at this time, going back to that time in sixty-six and that, what happened was that this Italian family'd go to that Italian //family this week,//
M608 //Oh right.//
M1163 and next week you'd go to them, and it was always their business, whether it was a chip //shop or a pub or whatever it was,//
M608 //Uh-huh, uh-huh.//
M1163 you always went there. So this erm crowd, they were called [CENSORED: surname], erm they came up and they brought these two girls with them. //And here it was my//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 to-be wife and her sister,
M608 Oh right.
M1163 you know? And I says I says, "I- I've seen you", in er in Italian, she says to my mother and father, "Ah, he was in the shop a couple o weeks ago", you know, //you know, so so that was it, and just fae there//
M608 //Aye, uh-huh that was it?//
M1163 and so we spoke, and I I spoke [?]her back[/?], shall we say, and we sort o forgot aboot it,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 and it was months later we just decided tae tae go oot.
M608 How did you get over the language barrier, cause I mean, did you speak Italian at the time?
M1163 Very very basic, //you know, and//
M608 //Aye.// //Aye.//
M1163 //she was learning English as well, so// we just done that a wee bit as well.
M608 And she learnt English faster than you learnt //Italian, yeah yeah.//
M1163 //It-, exactly, yeah, well, she's in the chip shop,// //seven days a week, so if you don't speak,//
M608 //Aye, that's true, mm.// //You don't get on, aye.//
M1163 //you don't get on, and they had an ice-cream van// as well, she'd go oot in the ice-cream van as well, //you know, to//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 to to to pick it up. And there was a women there, Toni, and she finished up marrying one o the brothers, Albert, God rest him. And she told my wife, "We're no goin oot in the van till you learn a new tw-, learn two new words today".
M608 [laugh]
M1163 So that was the thing as well, she would, she //would learn a couple of words on a daily basis.//
M608 //Uh-huh uh-huh.// Aye.
M1163 So, you know, so this was erm it was the way you learn it, in't it? //You've got to speak it.//
M608 //Uh-huh aye, aye.//
M1163 So it, an it just sort o snowballed fae there. //Aye, that's it.//
M608 //Mm, so does, do- does she do the interpreting for you when you go back to Italy?//
M1163 Yeah.
M608 Aye.
M1163 Aye, if it, if it's complicated.
M608 Aye.
M1163 If it's er simple stuff then it's no a problem.
M608 Yeah. Do you find that you can read it, or is it
M1163 Y- I can read it and I'll pick oot words, //and then you'll,//
M608 //Mm.// //Mm.//
M1163 //I'll just say to my wife, look, "Does that say, whatever?" and she will say "Aye", or she'll say "No, that word there is because it's in that sentence is//
M608 Mmhm. //Mmhm. Mmhm.//
M1163 //means this, so it's s- slightly different, but, you know, that's just the way it is.//
M608 Mm. You were never tempted to to kind of end up in Italy? //Cause I cause I would. [laugh]//
M1163 //[inhale] I I// I I would, I think I'd give it a bash, //but my wife's not,//
M608 //Uh-huh. No?//
M1163 she's not keen to go back. The same with my mother, she does not want, she widnae go back to Italy to stay //the full time.//
M608 //No? Why not?//
M1163 I don't know if it's maybe memories of when they were younger //and they they don't//
M608 //Oh right.//
M1163 think that it would erm, it's changes, would probably assume it's still the //same.//
M608 //The same, aye.//
M1163 But i- if you erm look at it, my mother's been over here since nineteen forty-eight,
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 you know, so even ten year ago the amount o years she's over here, she left Italy when she was, well, twenty-six, she would be about twenty-one or twenty-two. //when she got married.//
M608 //Aye, aye.//
M1163 So she's spent the bulk o her life over here.
M608 Yeah.
M1163 So my wife was sixteen, so she's spent the bulk o her life //here as well,//
M608 //Yeah, yeah.//
M1163 you know, sorry, seventeen she was. //[inaudible] So she's//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 spent the bulk o her life here, so to to to go back there, //erm,//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 my ideal scenario would be you go back to Italy maybe for three, four months in the year, //and//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 come back here, //but, you know,//
M608 //Mmhm yeah, yeah.//
M1163 she's no wanting to do that, so //that's just just the way it is.//
M608 //Yeah.// Cause I'm thinkin ahead, my wife's Brazilian, we were thinking, well, are we going to spent some time in Brazil, //some time here//
M1163 //Mm.//
M608 you know, it's it's a kind of difficult thing to try to figure out. //I think we'll//
M1163 //Yeah.//
M608 at least spent part of the year when when we retire, er us being over there.
M1163 Mmhm.
M608 part of the year //here an//
M1163 //Well, that's what I would have expected,// well, expected, I would have assumed that we could have done.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 But she's not //she's not that keen to go back.//
M608 //Not keen, yeah.// Because there are bits, I mean, bits of the south of Italy that are just gorgeous, //just beautiful.//
M1163 //Well, this is it,// but my wife says that you go back there, what can you do, //you know,//
M608 //Mm mmhm.//
M1163 you know, there's only so much you can do, erm, you've got to pay for the doctor's,
M608 That's true.
M1163 you've got to have transport, //because the bus service//
M608 //Mm.// //Oh aye.//
M1163 //is nothing like here,// you know, er all the wee bits and pieces //that are are the//
M608 //Yeah.//
M1163 problem, you go over there and you don't know anybody apart from your own immediate family //so you need to start//
M608 //That's right, yeah.//
M1163 making new friends, if that's //the word to use, you//
M608 //Mmhm aye.//
M1163 you need to start erm going about and //networking, is that the the//
M608 //Mmhm.// //Yeah, I think, aye.//
M1163 //terminology you've got to use? Whereas here// she can jump in her car and go here, go there, go and meet this yin, go and meet that yin, //dae this, dae that, you know?//
M608 //Mmhm mmhm.//
M1163 To me the ideal scenario would be, couple of months every year just disappear,
M608 Mmhm. //Aye. Mmhm.//
M1163 //you know, or even, you know, two or three times a year,// especially in days wi the cheap travel, //you know, just jump in the the plane,//
M608 //Aye, aye, yeah.//
M1163 two minutes and you're at the airport.
M608 Oh aye.
M1163 And and you're away, you know, //six hours,//
M608 //Aye, that's true.//
M1163 fae house tae house, //you know, that's us in//
M608 //Good grief, is that all it is? Aye.//
M1163 my sister's up in Milan. And it's er it's five hours, //house to house.//
M608 //Aye.// Uh-huh.
M1163 You know? So erm.
M608 Yeah, it's tempting. //Aye.//
M1163 //That's the thing, but// she disnae want to dae it so, well, obviously I don't pressurise her.
M608 No no. So you're retired now? //Is that right?//
M1163 //Er, in brackets.// //[laugh] Technically.//
M608 //[laugh] Aye, yeah, but you're very busy, aye.//
M1163 Eh, at the moment, I'm unemployed, I'm looking for another job.
M608 Oh, is that the, yeah. //Uh-huh.//
M1163 //Eh that that that's what I'm doing.// I've just filled in an application form right there for a sessional worker for a children's home.
M608 Oh right. //Mmhm.//
M1163 //You know, erm,// //I-I- I'm on the Children's Panel, in South Ayrshire, I do the Children's Panel,//
M608 //Mm mmhm.// //Oh right, okay.//
M1163 //you know?// Er and since I was doing that I've really enjoyed
M608 Mmhm. //It's been interesting, yeah.//
M1163 //E-e- enjoyed's not the right word, but I've en-, you know it's been interesting.// And I'd like to do a bit more, //for for for children at that side,//
M608 //Mmhm mmhm.// //Mmhm.//
M1163 //you know,// so the children's home is somewhere that you can have a wee bit o an input.
M608 Yeah.
M1163 My problem is that I left school at fifteen,
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 er I've got I think I think I've got a great [?]not[/?] of, a lot of knowledge,
M608 Aye.
M1163 I do not have this piece of paper
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 telling me that I've got an O level, I've got a Higher, //I've got a degree, I've got this or that.//
M608 //Mm mmhm.// Yeah.
M1163 So, all the jobs nowadays is //your qualifications,//
M608 //Aye, it's difficult, aye.// //Aye, aye.//
M1163 //and if you don't have any, you've had it, so// //that's just the way the cookie crumbles.//
M608 //That's a that's a difficult one to begin with.// How did you get involved with the er, you've been working with the [CENSORED: companyname] Group?
M1163 Yeah.
M608 Yeah, how did, how did you get involved in that in the first place?
M1163 It was a friend o mine, when I when I finished up wi [CENSORED: companyname]. //[CENSORED: companyname] got closed down.//
M608 //Mmhm.// Oh that's right.
M1163 because their Australian parent company decided they would erm, [tut] legitimately, I'll I'll need to be careful what I'm saying if it's going onto //the tape here,//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 legitimately take away a lot of money out of various funds that the [CENSORED: companyname] and the other companies had,
M608 Aye. //Mmhm.//
M1163 //erm back to Australia, so they closed them down.// So when my friend heard that I was looking for something, he'd mentioned, "Look there's a job going in [CENSORED: town name], it's only three days a week. It'll maybe suit you until you get something else."
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 So I made a few phonecalls, got the application form, went to this interview, and got the job.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 [tut] And it's just it's been there. And I I enjoyed it, //and it//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 it was it was ideal because [cough] I'd started to reach the stage where I'm saying to myself, look do I need this pressure in life, //an//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 do I need this and that? because I I've worked hard, and I'm doing this. [says goodbye to a man leaving the room] That's just my son going to work.
M608 [inhale]
M1163 No a bad time to //start, yeah, half ten.//
M608 //No no bad, half ten.//
M1163 [cough] Aye, he works in the machines in the pubs and hotels, //you know, the//
M608 //Oh right, uh-huh.// //Oh okay.//
M1163 //pool tables and// gaming machines and that, //so//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 they cannae go into pubs till this time, //you know, like that, so there's nae//
M608 //Oh of course, aye. Mm.//
M1163 point they were up any earlier. But anyway, [cough] because I'd worked hard earlier on in my life, erm I could able to sort o step back a wee bit fae the five days a week.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 You know, humdrum or six days a week //and//
M608 //Yeah.//
M1163 got bills to pay here and bills to pay there. I'm saying that very nicely, //I'm not//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 not bein ignorant when I say that.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 But, you know, because you work hard one way, you don't have the fun the other way.
M608 Yeah.
M1163 Er and because you do that and if you if you look after yourself and after your finances,
M608 Aye.
M1163 then, it's thingwy, and so at the present moment, [cough] I'd like to get a job three or four days a week.
M608 Aye.
M1163 You know? But I I don't have any erm necessity shall we //say, tae//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 go and take the first job that's //coming so as I need to//
M608 //Coming to you.//
M1163 pay my bills.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 You know, at the moment I've got a wee //bit o savings that I//
M608 //[cough]//
M1163 can use to to to pay my bills and //just look//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 for something that I'm, I'd like to do. Something that I can enjoy doing.
M608 Yeah.
M1163 But erm at fifty-six years of age, it's it's a young, you know //it's no time to//
M608 //Yeah.// //Yeah.//
M1163 //to retire, there's still a few years left in me yet.//
M608 Oh aye.
M1163 But in the same respect, I'm no lookin to work seven o'clock in the morning to seven o'clock at night, five, six days a week,
M608 Aye.
M1163 you know, it's fortunate, thank //God for that, that I don't have to//
M608 //Mm mm.// //Mmhm mm.//
M1163 //to go doon that route, you know?// //So.//
M608 //Can you tell me a bit more about// the kind of things you've been doing with the [CENSORED: companyname] Group, cause my Mum tells me a bit, //but//
M1163 //Aye.// Erm I started off wi the, being a volunteers' coordinator.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 So you'd to go and look for volunteers, that would go into people's homes, or take them for a wee drive, or take them for a walk in the summertime or that,
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 [cough] So you had to erm select the people, meet them, go through a sort of screening process,
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 pick out the ones that you felt would be suitable,
M608 Aye.
M1163 then drew up a training package, //trained them,//
M608 //Mmhm.// //Aye, yeah.//
M1163 //put them through that, done the Disclosure Scotland,// //all that, yeah, you know,//
M608 //Got, everybody's gotta go through Disclosure now, haven't they, aye.//
M1163 match them up wi the person, take them oot to meet the people, let them see if you like them, they like you,
M608 Aye.
M1163 and then arrange a time that suits.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 And you just keep erm keep record o their visits, ask them to fill a form out,
M608 Aye.
M1163 after every visit, //send their expenses in on a a regular business and pay their expenses.//
M608 //Mmhm mmhm.// So you were working more with the volunteers than with the Alzheimer's patients //themselves, yeah.//
M1163 //Yeah, yeah, that was my initial// //remit.//
M608 //Aye, uh-huh.//
M1163 And they had [CENSORED: forename], [CENSORED: forename] [CENSORED: surname], she's the service manager, she had an idea o group work with them, //you know?//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 So, well she's very football //orientated,//
M608 //Okay.//
M1163 you know, and I mean football orientated.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 Erm so she thought about a football reminiscence group, //erm,//
M608 //Ah right.//
M1163 she asked me if I would take it, and I //said yeah I would//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 take it, and it's just snowballed frae there.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 And we've had, we got a bit in the Scotsman about it,
M608 Uh-huh?
M1163 [cough] and then we got a phonecall from a woman down south in Northampton,
M608 Okay.
M1163 it was, a bit was put in the Physio-, Physiotherapist Weekly, or //something, the magazine for all the physios, and//
M608 //Oh right, mmhm.//
M1163 she was asking a few questions about it.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 And at the end of the questions, she says "And how long do they play in each half?"
M608 [laugh]
M1163 You know, and I says, "Well", I says, "considering we're talking about people in their sixties and their seventies and //their eighties and//
M608 //Aye, aye.//
M1163 that, you know, and quite a few of them are not erm mobile tae tae tae walk a distance, never mind play football." "Oh, I thought yous played football as well". I says "No, we don't play football."
M608 [?]Silly[/?]. //Aye.//
M1163 //So that's what it's been an// now [CENSORED: forename]'s got a new job, she's leaving, //erm, at the end o the week.//
M608 //Oh right, yeah.// Mmhm.
M1163 And we don't know what's happening. //The new manager's//
M608 //Oh right, okay.//
M1163 be put in place and it's up to the new manager to decide what she's wanting to do.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 We'll need to a- advertise for a project worker as well,
M608 Oh right.
M1163 because the manager runs a service in Irvine.
M608 Okay.
M1163 And she won't be able to have the time to run this service,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 so she'll need to, well [CENSORED: business name] will need to advertise for a project //worker.//
M608 //Aye, aye.//
M1163 And because they're looking for a project worker, they'll be looking for people with qualifications an //an SVQs an//
M608 //Yeah.//
M1163 what do I no have? //You know? So that just the way the cookie crumbles.//
M608 //Aye, qualifica-, yeah, aye, aye.// Do they not er count experience against that though, I mean, no? //Depends.//
M1163 //Depends.// It's like everything else in life, //if it suits,//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 it does, and if it doesnae, //it doesnae.//
M608 //Aye.// //But you've got experience//
M1163 //Aye.//
M608 on the ground with the people already? //Aye.//
M1163 //That's, that this is the thing, but// will that be taken into consideration,
M608 Aye.
M1163 that a a a manager, //er, it's human nature,//
M608 //Yeah, yeah.//
M1163 if you you know somebody that would be good at a job, //you can interview people//
M608 //Aye.// //Aye. Uh-huh.//
M1163 //and you can manipulate them, I'm saying that nicely,// the the the the interviews with the people for that person to get the job, //you know?//
M608 //Oh aye, aye.//
M1163 So if this new manager comes in and she knows somebody that she wants to be put in place as her project //worker,//
M608 //Mmhm mmhm.//
M1163 then that's what it'll be, //you know?//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 And again because of the circumstances at the moment, I don't think I'm in in the running for //it, even if I did get//
M608 //Mm.// //Yeah. Mm.//
M1163 //an application form.// And even if I did get an interview. //Cause I don't have the bits//
M608 //Aye.// //Aye.//
M1163 //o paper, and everybody's all running scared the noo.// //I don't have any//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 qualifications, yo- you know, if something happens, you're this, that and the next thing. //You know?//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 If I get the opportunity, I'd, I'll definitely do it.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 But I I'm definitely not holding my breath, //you know?//
M608 //Uh-huh, yeah.// //Mmhm.//
M1163 //And that that's a fact o life, that's just the way the cookie crumbles.//
M608 Yeah.
M1163 You know?
M608 Yeah. One of the things I found, I I attended a carers' group for Alzheimer's with my mum, and it was just in- incredible the, for me, er to see what people were coping with in their everyday lives. //Cause it kind o opened up my eyes, really, quite//
M1163 //Aye, it's// //It-it- it's it's huge.//
M608 //quite quite yeah.// //Yeah. Have you been organising things like//
M1163 //It is.//
M608 pub quizzes for them, or or quizzes? //Quizzes. Uh-huh.//
M1163 //We do quizzes at the the lunch club,// //you know?//
M608 //Aye, how does that// how does that go, cause that struck me when I first heard of it, it's a kind of strange thing to be doing with Alzheimer's patients, with people with memory problems, doing quizzes with them. Do you find that works, or?
M1163 Well, a certain person on your left-hand side can either shake her head or //nod up and down to say it works or not works.//
M608 //[laugh]// //Yeah.//
M1163 //You know? [third person in room laughs]// It works because erm, [cough], I I just pitch the questions, //it's not, it's not a a//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 a brainy level, shall we //say.//
M608 //Uh-huh.// //Aye.//
M1163 //I'm saying that nice-, you know obviously// there's some fun in it, there's some joking in it.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 Erm but the majority of people, they can remember back, I don't ask what happened //yesterday or last week, it was//
M608 //Uh-huh.// //Oh aye.//
M1163 //sort of five year ago,// ten year ago, twenty year //ago, what//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 what's this, what's this capital, what's //that?//
M608 //Uh-huh.// //Uh-huh.//
M1163 //All the different// things, and if they want a wee help, instead of getting a point, they'll get half a //point, but I'll gie them some//
M608 //Uh-huh.// //Aye.//
M1163 //clues.// And some of them can be quite funny as well, //[inaudible]//
M608 //But you choose your questions carefully, do you?// //Aye, aye. Aye, aye.//
M1163 //Yeah, oh aye, oh you've go- you've got to, you know, it's just// erm just go through the Internet and pick out bits, pieces, here, there and just cobble things thegither, if I see something interesting in the newspaper, or I was speaking to somebody the other day, and "Oh that's a good idea", I just go back home and type it into the sheet and
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 use that at the next quiz.
M608 Yeah, yeah.
M1163 You know, this is, it's just all, it's all, [cough] because I've been dealing with the general public, I think I've got a fair idea of wh-wh- what's needed and what's required,
M608 Aye.
M1163 and erm [tut] [cough] without blowing my trumpet too much, it seems to have worked. //because I I I think the causes are//
M608 //Oh aye.//
M1163 are good and, you know, some people are looking forward to it more than others.
M608 Well, certainly my Dad enjoys //it, aye, yeah.//
M1163 //Aye, there's a lady from Troon,// erm er she's the carer for her husband,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 you know, er [CENSORED: forename] and [CENSORED: forename].
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 [cough] "You're no havin a quiz?" This was at the the last, erm, //lunch club,//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 in December. I had arranged for a keyboard player to come in,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 erm and just play some songs and have some c- dancing, just to //have a thingwy.//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 "You've no quiz? That's no fair. I was looking forward", and she's so so much looking forward to these quizzes. //She's very competitive,//
M608 //Aye.// //[laugh]//
M1163 //you know?// So what I dae wi wi [CENSORED: forename] is erm I always have a sheet wi some tough questions,
M608 Aye.
M1163 because I know her and her husband are, you know, //they're a wee bit educated better than me.//
M608 //They've r-.// //[laugh] Aye.//
M1163 //So I make sure that I've got some tough questions in there, because if they start// you know, if they're running away wi the quiz, //[cough]//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 you just give their team a few tough //questions, you know, to just//
M608 //Questions, right.//
M1163 bring them back again. //Because I always just//
M608 //Aye.// //Aye, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.//
M1163 //there's only usually a point, or something, two points at the end of the day, so that's what it's all aboot, it's having a bit o fun, but again,// because you sort o realise just what's going to be, //you've got to be prepared for it.//
M608 //Aye, uh-huh.// //Aye.//
M1163 //There's another// family, they they've been in a few times in the summer, especially when the schools are on holiday. They bring their grandchildren with them,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 you know, and erm I personally didnae like that, //because er//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 it's no for kids, //you know, but they all [?]need tae[/?],//
M608 //Yeah, yeah.//
M1163 so that was [inaudible], so again I was doing the same there, I was bringing in some tough //questions,//
M608 //Questions, aye.//
M1163 you know, because one of them, he thought he knew everything.
M608 Aye.
M1163 Well, y-y-, I'm I'm no being disrespectful, but you had to put him in his place, //you know, because//
M608 //Aye, aye.//
M1163 it was this, that and the next thing, and you know if they're running away wi the quiz, well //you know, it's no fair, and and somebody's got to turn round and say//
M608 //Aye, no, it's no f-, it's no fun for anybody, aye aye.//
M1163 "But how come, you know, they had their grandchildren with them, so //they knew this, that and the next thing."//
M608 //Aye, mm.//
M1163 So again you've got to be //prepared, for//
M608 //Prepared, aye.// //Yeah.//
M1163 //for for what to do and that, you know?//
M608 Is, are pub quizzes something you do yourself outside then, no? //Cause, just when you were saying//
M1163 //N- never.//
M608 today you were preparing for "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?"
M1163 Aye, that's just for the, for Christmas, because my my son just got engaged the other week there, //[cough], so his//
M608 //Oh right.//
M1163 future in-laws to be are coming down. [cough] so erm I just got that, because [CENSORED: forename], [CENSORED: forename]'s her name, she wanted to play it.
M608 Oh right.
M1163 [cough] So we had to do, so we just //trying to make sure I've seen some of the quizzes, be prepared.//
M608 //[laugh]// //Aye.//
M1163 //You've gotta be prepared.//
M608 Aye.
M1163 [tut] But erm, och that's what it is. //But I don't go oot//
M608 //Mm.//
M1163 last night I was oot, that's the first day I've been oot for months and months and months. Was only oot for a couple of hours,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 for a, you know, I just don't go oot and socialise.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 A, I'm no uised to it, //because//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 when you're growing up you're in a pub environment, you've had enough o that. //[cough], B, I don't//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 I d-, I take a a drink but //it's just a social drink, I don't, you know?//
M608 //Mmhm mmhm.//
M1163 Erm, and C, I grudge the money //that you pay in pubs nooadays.//
M608 //Mmhm aye.//
M1163 Cause there last night it was f- nearly six quid, five pound fifty or five pound sixty for two gin and tonics. //[cough]//
M608 //Aye, I know, it's-.//
M1163 A couple of rounds of drinks and you could be able to buy a bottle of gin and half a dozen bottles o //tonic, you could have//
M608 //Aye, that's true.//
M1163 sit in your hoose for a week, //well, the way I drink it could be a fortnight, having a couple o gins every night,//
M608 //Aye. [laugh]// //Aye, aye.//
M1163 //you know,// I I just //grudge it, you know, I'll go oot//
M608 //Grudge the money, aye.//
M1163 occasionally, wi wi if somebody asked me, that's fine, but I just don't go oot on a regular //basis.//
M608 //Yeah.//
M1163 I'd rather go to Aldi's or Lidl's or somewhere and //buy//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 a dozen bottles o cola, //something and//
M608 //Mmhm.// //Yeah.//
M1163 //just sit in the hoose and get the same satisfaction.//
M608 So you've got a big family celebration planned for Christmas then wi the //engagement?//
M1163 //[cough] At the moment there's only thirteen// //coming,//
M608 //Ah, thirteen. Mm.// //That's, uh-huh.//
M1163 //which is a wee bit disappointing. Usually there's// a lot more than thirteen,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 you know, but again, people grow up //and, you know, other//
M608 //Oh aye.//
M1163 you know, and relations have other things to do and that, //you know?//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 Supposed to be getting my sister over fae Italy, but her husband has got some overtime //that he didn't expect to get.//
M608 //Oh okay.//
M1163 And it's quite good overtime he's getting, //so//
M608 //Mmhm.//
M1163 that's three that are no coming. They're just going to stay in Italy. //[inaudible]//
M608 //Okay. So she lives in Italy now?//
M1163 She stays in Milan.
M608 Ah right, okay.
M1163 I had a brother, he's over in Phoenix, Arizona, and //my sister, she's in Milan.//
M608 //Oh okay.// //Uh-huh. Is that permanent, there in Phoenix?//
M1163 //You know?// Oh aye, he's been there for thirty year.
M608 Aye.
M1163 Aye, he worked wi Motorola //then//
M608 //Oh right, okay, aye.//
M1163 well he went to Zambia initially, when he //qualified as an accountant wi//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 Coopers Lybrand I think //it was at that time.//
M608 //Uh-huh.//
M1163 He was in Zambia for a couple o year.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 Then he came back to Yeovil, and then he moved up to East Kilbride,
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 through Motorola. [tut] And at that time they were looking for people to to go to to Phoenix. //So,//
M608 //Aye, a change in climate anyway!//
M1163 oh that's it, and er he's been there ever since.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 Erm but, that's just the way it goes. So we we go there, we've been there the last few years for a a couple o weeks. //over tae Phoenix, as well, aye, it's//
M608 //Yeah, how do you like Phoenix? I've never been there.//
M1163 erm again it depends if you like, well obviously it's desert, it's //a it's a valley,//
M608 //Mmhm mmhm.//
M1163 you know, so you're guaranteed the heat.
M608 Mmhm.
M1163 Erm and again there's no public transport, so you need a car. You go to a shopping mall because it's //too hot tae tae walk aboot ootside, an//
M608 //Too hot, aye.// //Aye, it's a different kind of life.//
M1163 //it's a// well, [cough], I I wouldnae like it.
M608 Aye.
M1163 It's, were you brought up in it, you know, //you- you've got to//
M608 //Aye.//
M1163 life in it, then that's fine.
M608 Uh-huh.
M1163 You know, but he's been there for thirty year so he's used to the way o life and his kids are used to the way o life as well, obviously. But I took my wife over, the first time we went over and she said "Don't like it" and the second time we went over she says "Don't like //it",//
M608 //Mm.// //Yeah.//
M1163 //you know, and to me it's// //great for a holiday, it gets you away and//
M608 //Yeah.//
M1163 you see something different, you know, I've been to the Grand Canyon, //and I've been to//
M608 //Aye.// //Aye.//
M1163 //Tombstone, I've been to [?]the galas[/?],// you know, you can see things, and that's what I like, //to see different things.//
M608 //Yeah, yeah.//
M1163 But it wouldnae be my //cup o tea to stay for for, you know,//
M608 //No.// //No.//
M1163 //a a home, shall we say?//
M608 I'm the same. My sister lives in the States, but, it's great visiting her, but //I don't see myself ever living there, no.//
M1163 //Mm, aye, no,// //for some reason, it's just never appealed to me.//
M608 //Yeah. Mm.//

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Information about Document 1613

Conversation 42: Man from Ayrshire, with Italian background, talking about Italy, jobs and Alzheimer's support work


Audio audience

Adults (18+)
For gender Mixed
Audience size 2

Audio awareness & spontaneity

Speaker awareness Aware
Degree of spontaneity Spontaneous

Audio footage information

Year of recording 2006
Recording person id 608
Size (min) 32
Size (mb) 156

Audio setting

Recording venue Front room of private house
Geographic location of speech Prestwick, Ayrshire

Audio relationship between recorder/interviewer and speakers

Family members or other close relationship
Known via mutual acquaintance
Not previously acquainted
Speakers knew each other No

Audio transcription information

Transcriber id 718
Year of transcription 2007
Year material recorded 2006
Word count 7659

Audio type



Participant details

Participant id 608
Gender Male
Decade of birth 1950
Educational attainment University
Age left school 17
Upbringing/religious beliefs Protestantism
Occupation University Professor
Place of birth Ayr
Region of birth S Ayr
Birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Country of birth Scotland
Place of residence Bridge of Weir
Region of residence Renfrew
Residence CSD dialect area Renfr
Country of residence Scotland
Father's occupation Insurance Broker
Father's place of birth Auchinleck
Father's region of birth S Ayr
Father's birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Father's country of birth Scotland
Mother's occupation Dental Receptionist
Mother's place of birth Ayr
Mother's region of birth S Ayr
Mother's birthplace CSD dialect area Ayr
Mother's country of birth Scotland


Language Speak Read Write Understand Circumstances
English Yes Yes Yes Yes In most everyday situations
Portuguese Yes No No Yes When trying to communicate with my in-laws
Scots Yes Yes Yes Yes In domestic/activist circles; reading literature


Participant details

Participant id 1163
Gender Male
Decade of birth 1950
Age left school 15
Upbringing/religious beliefs Catholicism
Occupation Presently unemployed / retail, hotel trade, insurance, social work
Place of birth Newmains
Region of birth Lanark
Birthplace CSD dialect area Lnk
Country of birth Scotland
Place of residence Ayr
Region of residence S Ayr
Residence CSD dialect area Ayr
Country of residence Scotland
Father's occupation Retail - self-employed
Father's place of birth Johnstone
Father's region of birth Renfrew
Father's birthplace CSD dialect area Renfr
Father's country of birth Scotland
Mother's occupation In business with father: pubs/hotel/chip shop
Mother's place of birth San Biaggio
Mother's country of birth Italy


Language Speak Read Write Understand Circumstances
English Yes Yes Yes Yes
Italian Yes Yes No No Basic