Sunday, 19 August 2012

Jobs I have done, part 1

Not all these posts will be in chronological order, but this one is.
The very first paid job I had was one which has been taken over by a machine.
As a family we moved to Catterall in the June of 1974.  My first paid job was in the half-term holiday and I think a couple of weekends around that time of year.
I went around to the local farm shop for some veg for Mum and was asked if I might be interested in helping get the potato crop up.  I would be paid for my work.  After asking what equipment I needed, none but my hands, and clothing, something that didn't matter if it got dirty, I said yes.
It wasn't easy work and at the end of a day spud picking I would be dirty and tired, but better off.  In those days the tractor would turn over the rows of potatoes, loosening them from the soil.  The spud picker's job was to work their way along the rows picking the potatoes from the soil.  I found that there were many lying under the surface as well, but some of the other people picking only picked the ones they could see on the surface.
My sister decided that she wanted to earn some money as well, and asked if she could come along as well. I don't remember her turning up every time.
It's not a job teenagers can do any more in this country, as there are now machines which turn the soil over, put it on a conveyor belt and the potatoes are sorted mechanically from the soil, although I suppose you can still potato pick in some less well off countries.

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