American Cream Soda (2,500 words, 10 minute read)

This little tale has been lurking in the back of my mind for years. It is based on a family story told many times by my father, Jack, who did indeed cycle out to far flung building sites, in all weathers, his yellow cape and sou’wester his only protection against rain, sleet and snow, often returning home frozen to the bone.

At that time, building trade workers were paid ‘travelling time and expenses’ and, with ‘overtime’ at ‘time and a half’ for weekday evenings and ‘double time’ on weekend days, every extra penny was welcome in our single end at 84 Greenview Street, in Pollokshaws.

(To read a bit more from this period, before the re-development of Pollokshaws under the slum clearance programme, try searching on this website for ‘The Go Between’.)

When Writers’ Circus set a challenge to write on the topic of ‘rubbish’, I decided to try to write it down. Yes, the link is tangential but it was the best I could muster.

The title of this piece?

My Mum was a tea drinker, Betty the Tea Jenny. Like Granny Bremner, Mum was teetotal all her life. Her tipple was American Cream Soda.

So, read on, delve back into the past. Nostalgia never dies.

Many thanks again to Kareth my Editor, who hoes tirelessly through my output of drivel to correct all sorts of spelling, logic and grammar errors and meticulously ensures necessary ‘commas’ are added while battling to eliminate my penchant for the spurious ‘that’ word!

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