Meanwhile, back in Barnsley
You’d be amazed at some of the things I find in my collection of memorabilia. Quite how it came about that I am the custodian of hundreds of photographs, letters, newspaper cuttings, books and so on, I’m not exactly sure. But every time I go to explore amongst the boxes, I find something I’d forgotten about – such as the telegram pictured here.
As you can see, this is the telegram that Eric Jackson sent home to Yorkshire from Cape Town.
Nowadays, it seems strange to think that a telegram was the way we used to get news about my dad’s exploits. Despite what people may think, we were relatively civilized in the darkest, deepest depths of Barnsley. We’d stopped painting ourselves with woad quite a few years back.
Nevertheless, it’s hard to remember that in those days, telephone calls between Africa and England were difficult – and remarkably expensive (and you know what they say about people from Yorkshire when it comes to saving a bob or two). Cellphones weren’t around, of course. There was zero contact from my dad when he was on his trips. He had sporadic contact with Ford Motor Company, of course, and as Ford would have probably only contacted us if there was bad news, no news was good news!