My last post mentioned the ink monitor at Stepgate’s. He used to fill the little china ink wells on the desks, it must have been an onerous job, taking a lot of his play-time.
It soon came to the notice of the ‘Apache’ boys—anyone living round about Cowley Ave were called ‘Apaches—don’t ask me why.
The ‘Apaches’, always looking for ways to outsmart the teachers, soon realised if you were very good, neat, clean, and enthusiastic, you were rewarded with a job—more like punished— like filling ink wells, keeping an eye on the little milk bottles or sweeping up shavings after wood-work. That is why we were all so scruffy, and had lots of time in the playground……I could have just made that up.
The kids from the top of the town—any where that was not a council house—had their own pens, and bottles of Quink for their Parker or Swan fountain pens, these even had gold nibs! We just had a stick with a steel nib stuck on the end. No wonder the teachers couldn’t read our writing.
I have to apologise to my friend, Alex, the milk monitor. As I sometimes mention him in my stories, he says he can’t go out in Chertsey without being accosted. Sorry Al. Ha, Ha, Ha.