Owen: What about the farming life: that, has that changed a lot, too? I mean, that was what you grew up in, isn't it, you know?
Josie: Yeah. Och, there's, is, is, is, there's not much farming round here. It's all cattle, mostly.
Owen: Aye, and has that, that, that, that, that's been a tough enough life, hasn't it, in recent times?
Josie: In recent times, that's right.
Owen: Aye, not easy.
Josie: No. I remember when we lived on the island our old man used to start lovely potatoes. You, you'd the nicest potatoes in the county – lovely – and lovely, lovely vegetables. And quite good ground, not, uh, no manure sewed on it, like, what, like nowadays, you know.
Owen: Do you know a lot of
Josie: There was no, uh, the food was real good. And one didn't think that at that time till now, till you know, till you see what you're eating now.
Owen: peop, peop, peop, people've said that to me, you know, they said, uhm
Josie: Oh, sure the Lord! We had
Owen: food just doesn't taste as good.
Josie: Nothing tastes any good; there's neither taste nor smell of anything. There's not indeed.
Owen: Is that because the way it's, it's grown now, d'you think, or?
Josie: It is. Sure, there's more chemicals put into things to for, for, force it on too much.
Owen: Aye, people are talking about this genetically modified food.
Josie: Aye, well, even before that a-sort-of-thing. Sure, the milk there that you buy: I mind long ago when you'd milk, when it went sour, you could drink it. If, if you liked it; some wouldn't like it, but, uh, you, the milk was lovely for to keep for to make bread – lovely bread. And nowadays, uh, uh, uh, the milk doesn't go sour at all; it rots. That's what it does.
Owen: When you were a
Owen: Sorry, go on!
Josie: And, and, and, and, and the potatoes I mind long ago: a potato when it'd be boiled'd keep for three or four days and it wouldn't be, it wouldn't go bad or rotten, but now, uh, uh, uh, the second day, mine tend to be left over there for a day or two and you can then, then, they'd be forgot about. And the stink of them!
Owen: When you were a girl
Josie: That's right.
Owen: When you were a girl, what, what kind of stuff would your mother've made for you? What, what would've been the
Josie: Well, used to make porridge; made porridge and then you had a cow and you had, uh, cow's milk. You drunk plenty of milk, too. And, uh, porridge and, and rice I remember; plenty of rice; then we had some potatoes and vegetables, which was good. And one, uh, didn't appreciate them that time, for, for, forbye the old things we're buying now.
Owen: Life for women's changed, too, you know, the, the, we've got all the gadgets in the home now, but at one time, you know, wash day and things would've been a big day of the week, wouldn't they? And women would be scrubbing away, you know.
Josie: Yeah. Oh, uh, that, that, that was hard work, cause the water had to be all carried. Sure, before we got the water I carried from the river down there
Owen: You must have strong arms!
Josie: and it, aye, and you'd be queer and thin, now I'm big and fat and soft.
Owen: [inaudible] 1
Josie: Well, i, i, i, it was the, uh, same on the island here with the, we, we had about the same journey to carry it. And there was two orchards where we lived. The same, uh, uh, uh, not just as big as that one there; that was an orchard, too, but the apple trees is all about gone to two or three as you can see there. That was, that was full of apple trees that were set about, uh, about eighty years ago or ninety years, eighty or ninety years ago there was a man come round and uh, uh, uh encouraged the people to set orchards. So we, we had two up in Bleanish that time and there was one here. And there was lovely apples and you, you'd be, I mind wading through that orchard, well, thirty-five years ago and there, there'd be piles of, uh, apples lying under the tree and they'd be rubbing round your ankles, you'd be walking through them – lovely big apples – and there was nothing as nice I remember long ago in Bleanish as uh, uh, as getting two or three or four apples and put them in front of the hearth fire and, and, and, and the beautiful wholesome smell and money, money wouldn't buy it today.
Owen: In the war year
Josie: It was lovely!
Owen: Aye, aye. In the war years, you know, in somewhere like Belfast, you know, there, there wa, there was so much rationing and things like that; it didn't affect the country in the same way, cause you were growing your own food, really, isn't it?
Josie: Aye, well, s, some was and some, some wasn't, but it, it was a good help.
Josie: It was a good help.
Owen: And people were enc, were actually paid to, sort of, grow more, weren't they? And
Josie: They was right enough.
Owen: some of the farmers, aye.
Josie: That's right.
Owen: Aye. Aye.
Josie: That, aye, it was a help that way all right.
Owen: Aye. I suppose this scene here, though, you know, that we see in front of us, that, that can't have changed at all, can it? It must look exactly almost as it did when you were a child.
Josie: Oh, i, it is. Well, uh, our old man, when he was young, uh, I went and you, uh, wait now, uh, our old man, when he was young, he lived here on this end of the island. Ah, you can't see the house here in the bushes there; you can't see it at the minute, with the bushes. But he went to Drumlone School out there; that's, uh, about three mile away, walk that time. Course there was no road hardly that time for a, a mile out the way of that, but, uh, what was I going to say? Och, I went off my chat.
Owen: I was, was saying that that, that, that view must've looked pr
Josie: Oh aye. Well, uh, that time the country was full of young people. Sure, there was only one for every three that time. And that time he could go out to the, to the top of that hedge there along that, that, that's known as a water-meadow. And he used to go out to that hedge and blow the whistle or give the ball a kick and he'd have, he'd have eight or nine neighbours over for to play football. Now you'd, you, you, you could, you could whistle for, for two years and you wouldn't get one. Aye.
Owen: It's sad that, isn't it?
Josie: Aye, he would, he could go to the top of that out there and blow the whistle and, see, the boys'd be about somewhere and they'd hear him and then they'd know “Th, th, that's the football; we'll go now."
 [inaudible] indicates a passage or phrase where the speaker’s exact words are unclear.