Mrs Pearson was our landlady and I think she must have been nearly a hundred years old. She lived downstairs with her stout little dachshund who was the only dog I wasn’t terrified of.
She liked modern things but really, it was a long time ago when they were modern.
Mrs Pearson fascinated me and even though I knew I wasn’t supposed to disturb her, I loved to go down to visit her sometimes. She didn’t actually mind being disturbed, and she would show me her treasures which were very colourful costume jewellery pieces that smelt strongly of stale perfume.
On a pedestal in the hallway, stood a black bakelite telephone with an old silver dial that still had letters as well as numbers on it. A few times, my parents asked if they could use it and Mrs Pearson said they could.
In the laundry out the back of the house, there was a washing copper with a gas boiler underneath to heat the water. Not quite a modern washing machine but I didn’t mind because I loved the smell of the soapy boiling water and best of all, I loved it when my mother let me turn the handle to squeeze the clothes through the wringer.