THE EARLY LIFE OF….. WILLIAM JAMES HUNT #1
A CHILD OF GOD - JESUS CHRIST
This book is about my life with our Lord God's Guidance, and how he has answered my prayers all my entire life.
I grew up in an ordinary working class family whose parents came out from London to live in a country village in Wales. In those days we did not get the education one receives in school today. We also finished our school days at our 14th birthday. My mother and father also only had ordinary education, and were Christians.
They had to work very hard to give us a good life. God expects them to give their children a better life. I did not realize when I was young how good our parents were. I was also brought up to believe in our God - Jesus Christ, and to thank them in our prayers at night before going to sleep. Also my Mother taught us to keep God in your life as all good things come to you through God and Jesus Christ.
I have never forgotten those words from my Mother, who went on to say you will never regret that. Believe me as you read through my life story you will see what a wonderful life I have received from having God in my life, I have had my ups and downs but you will find I always came out on top all through my working days and into my retirement.
Our Lord God has a purpose for each one of us if we care to find it, my purpose had taken me a long time to find what God had for me, how did I eventually realized my purpose. First, why did I have a wonderful long time memory like a computer, when I had little education as a child, and to be able to memorize all those things that happened to me from the age of 5 years old when at the time I had no idea of ever being able to write a story of all my life, and also all those conversations I can repeat over and over again. If you read through my story you will see over the years how and why God gave me a wonderful memory. Which without doubt God gave me.
I did not start writing my life story until I lost my wife who went to be with our Lord God in August 1994. I eventually started after a few time in 1995, but I had to give up to get over the loss of my wife. I did start in 1996, and at that time I only had a typewriter. When I moved down to Keremeos, B.C. I later decided to go for a Computer just to keep it in memory. I wanted someone to teach me. Then new neighbours came to live next door, and our Lord new I needed them. Beverley, she was a Christian and from our first meeting she came to teach me the computer.
I never forgot the words my Mother told me many a time in my young days to always keep Jesus Christ in your heart, and one day you will never regret that. As you read my life story you will see how those words from my Mother has been. Remember the things your Christian mother will say to you through your young years, and still enjoy your life with other friends. Also remember your Christian mother will be your best friend on earth that you will ever have. Also remember, that God and Jesus Christ know everything.
TRUST THE LORD HE WILL NOT DESERT YOU
MEMOIRS BY AN ORDINARY WORKING CLASS CITIZEN. STARTING FROM A VERY YOUNG AGE. THIS IS A TRUE STORY OF OUR LORD GOD'S GUIDANCE THROUGHOUT MY WORKING LIFE AND IS STILL GUIDING ME IN MY RETIREMENT.
This is a summary of my life from the age of five years old when I started in the infant school to the time I left school at the age of 14 years old. In those days we started working at that age, there was no chance of going to collage because everything had to be paid for, even if you passed to go, in those days money was very low, and most parents could not afford to send their children to collage. This is a true story of my early life. Whoever may read my life story may forget all the help I have received through our Lord God's guidance over me, and may forget from one section to the other. I did not realize then the guidance of our Lord God-Jesus Christ until much later in my life.
WHAT IS RIGHT
That's the strength of me all my life, God will guide you, it's up to you to carry it through, that's God's help to believe in your own life. I gave my best always, and received God's guiding hand, all through my life. When I gave my best I always ended up as a leader. That was God's reward to me. He guided me all the way to be a leader. I thank the Lord every day for all the help I have received in my whole life. (2005)
MY LIFE STORY BY WILLIAM JAMES HUNT
My name is William James Hunt. I was born in Wales in a little village called Crynant, on Thursday the 26th of August 1920, at 12:10 am. This is the story of my earliest recollections. I know the exact time I was born because my mother told me that, among many other things. My Mother also told me that I started school at 3 years of age at our local infant school, the first year was more like a play school where we simply played little games and drew pictures. After that we started to learn things.
The next year we moved up to class one. One of the first lessons I can remember was to count up to ten in Welsh. I would like to show how it is done. English first: One - Un, Two - Da, Three - Tri, Four - Pedwar, Five - Pump, Six -Chwech, Seven - Saith, Eight - Wyth, Nine - Naw, Ten - Deg.
My Mother told me that, on occasion, I had been a very naughty little boy. Every time the teachers let the children out to play in the yard, I would run away and go home. The person looking after us had to come and fetch me back to school, but later, I settled down for the rest of my days in the infant school.
I do not remember much that happened in the first year, I do remember one thing because I got caught out one day. We had a few little bed mattress so that should we fall to sleep we would be placed on them until we woke up. We were getting close to Christmas, I kept thinking I would like to go on one of them, it was now our last two days before breaking up for the Christmas period. I pretended to fall asleep and I was placed on the mattress.
I was listening to the lady telling the class a Christmas story, and when she was showing them a big picture of reindeers with father Christmas, I opened my eyes to look at it; when the lady looking after us turned around to pick up another picture, when she saw me looking at it she said, "Come on you, back to your chair you're not sleeping!" I felt awfully guilty as she told my mother when she came to pick me up, and as usual she told all her friends and relations when they came to visit us, and that is why I never forgot about being naughty that time. Why was my Mother like this with me, I think she also realize God had given her a loving child.
These stories are what my Mother told me, as I grew older, before I could remember what was going on. When my Mother was expecting me, she had a friend who lived in our village who was also expecting a baby around the same time. My Mother's friend had her baby on the 25th of August 1920 at 11: 45pm. They named him Manfred Bowen. As I was born a few minutes later after 12 a.m. on the 26th of August, we were brought up together. There were at that time a lot of older children and a few older girls around our street. One day one of the girls was on her way home from the big school when she saw this little boy playing on the sidewalk. She thought it was I, so she got hold of my hand and took me home.
When my Mother opened the door, the girl said to her, "Do you know where I found him?" My Mother laughed and said that the girls face was a "picture" when she told her it was her friend's little boy, Manfred. Then of course, the girl had to take Manfred back to his own home.
When my Mother told her friends what had happened they had a good laugh. The funny thing was, it happened twice more with different girls during that year, my Mother told me when I got older. Apparently Manfred and I looked very much alike when we were toddlers. Manfred and I grew up together and were very good friends until the day I left Wales in November 1940.
Here is another thing my Mother told me. It was about the time three men were from, the next village above us, (Seven Sisters) who regularly drank in our village pub. Our bobby (policeman) would wait outside ready if the landlord needed him to turn any one out after closing hours.
Then one night these three men wouldn't leave, so the landlord had to throw them out with the help of the Bobby. One night after being turned out they waited for the Bobby to come out and "set" upon him. They did not see my Dad talking with his friend outside; they went straight to the bobby's assistance and helped the bobby to arrest them. Since then my Dad and our village "bobby" became very good friends indeed. I heard that story many a time as I grow up. The rest of my story is what I can remember personally.
These are my memoirs between five to six years old. I can assure you that it is absolutely the truth, so help me God. I had been in the infant school almost two years and learning now in Welsh words. Following is some of the easy ones, Mother - Mam; Father - Tad; Baby - Baban; Soup - Cawl; Fire - Tan; Ball - Pel; Cake - Teisen; Sweets - Taffyn; Morning - Bore; Good - Da. To say, "Good morning" in English like we say it, to say the same thing in Welsh is backward. They say. Bore-Da translating it as "Morning-Good." Lots of sayings in Welsh, to translate, are backwards. That was all we learned in Welsh in the infant school. Then the seventh year and there after, we were learning English (Welsh English), Then our time in the big school we were taught all English.
(COMMENT BY KEITH---My Dad did not learn to speak the true Welsh language. His parents were from London - true "cockiness" [within the sound of Bow-bells] and did not speak Welsh. Today Welsh is taught in schools, to preserve this very ancient language. As the Welsh like to display on things you can buy in their stores; "Welsh is the oldest living language in Europe." Indeed it is so. The Welsh language is akin to ancient Hebrew; there are no vowels used. Hence no one can read Welsh unless you are taught by someone who knows how the words are to be pronounced. The name "Hunt" is Anglo-Saxon; in fact one of the oldest Anglo-Saxon names on record. The "Hunt clan" lived on the border of England and Wales, hence a mixture of Welsh and English blood - Keith Hunt)
These are the things I can remember while in infant school. I did not understand actually, what was happening at the time, but my Dad was not working then, and he and my uncle Tom used to come passed the school every afternoon, when we were in the play yard to see me. I did find out much later, however, that there was a big strike occurring all over the United Kingdom around the summer of 1926. I was then almost six year old. I remember my Dad coming down passed the school each afternoon. (as my uncle Tom lived by our infant school). At the time we were playing outside in the play yard, and always giving me a penny to buy candy. We had a little shop near the school, which was on the way home, and I have never forgotten that. By then, the strike was a few months old. We had what we called a soup kitchen, which was in the church hall just above the infant school. We had to cross the main road with our teacher, and once in line she would leave us alone there.
The trouble with me was, once it was known what was for dinner and I did not like it, I would run home to my mother and she would share her dinner with me. Then she would take me back to school. I did this a number of times, but she never did tell my Dad about it. My uncle Tom and my Dad looked after the fires, for the ladies cooking for the soup kitchens.
I was four and a half at the time. I remember this tale about a gypsy. I was hanging around my Mother's skirt, like most of us did at that age. My Mother being a Londoner, was a very superstitious person, I found that out as I got older, especially when it came to dealing with those gypsies. They used to roam around the country, staying for a few months in each place. This is how they lived. They had a caravan pulled by a horse, and they parked on waste ground. They lived by making clothes pegs that were used to hang their washing out on a line in the back gardens.
The men did this by taking little branches off trees. Then their
wives would come around the doors selling them, they were really very good pegs in those days, "especially made by hand." The men would finish them off by using sandpaper that was used for smoothing the pegs off and nice to use; today similar pegs are machine made. I still have the hand made pegs. Even today, they lasted a lot longer then the machine pegs of today, it is really unbelievable how good they made them, especially with the little tools that they had around in those days; then they knew the very best trees with the strongest wood.
My Mother would never turn a gypsy away, as she believed they would place a very bad spell on your home. She would always buy a dozen pegs whether she needed them or not. Then she would always ask them if they would like a cup of tea and a biscuit. She would never have them in her home. We had a three-foot brick wall between our home and our next-door neighbour. It was a nice place to sit waiting for my Mam to bring it out on a little tray, then while the gypsy was eating and drinking my Mam would stand by the front door talking to her. I am still hanging around my Mother's skirt like we all did in those days.
I remember the conversation that followed. Remember I was four and a half at the time this took place. The gypsy said, "Is this your youngest boy?" My Mam said, "At the moment," (I, at that time did not know what that meant, but I eventually found out a lot later). And this is what the gipsy came out with, "He will have a very long life, but will always suffer with his stomach all his life." I have suffered with a very sensitive stomach, with the discomfort of Heartburn, how true those words from that Gipsy turned out to be. Until new medication came out at the end of year 2001. I do not have heartburn still I have a sensitive stomach. I can still enjoy eating the food I once had to eliminate from my diet with this new medication. (Prevacid).
Why do I remember what that gypsy said that day, you may be thinking, how could he? My Mother repeated that tale over and over again to all the family and her friends for a very long time. After about twelve months, it eventually was forgotten, until I got to the days when I left school to start my working life at fourteen years old (I will come back to the reason later) after starting working in the coal-mines.
The other problem I had with the gypsy and my Mam, which I did not understand when I was only four and a half years old, was when she replied to the gypsy question, "Was he her youngest son?" she said, "Yes, at the moment." At that time I was too young to know the date. As I got a lot older, and I was asked how I knew my age, I realized later what my Mam meant by saying "at the moment." I have a younger brother who is five years younger than me. He was born in August 20th 1925. My Mam was not expecting a baby when she said that to the gypsy. Now I hope everyone will believe me what I have said in my life is absolutely true, and believe me our good Lord knows it is true; there were many a time I can remember things that happened during the time I was in the infant school.
We were brought up to go to church from a very young age. I also did send our son to Church and my grandchildren when they were with us in 1974. As I was growing up I believed that you did not have to go to church every Sunday to be a Christian. I was so glad my Mother was a believer in the Lord! I have never forgot what my mother told me to this very day.
I lived next door to Glyn, who was about three years older than I. He used to take me at the weekend to play with him. He had no one his age on our street to play with. One Saturday morning, we went a little way down to the end of the village, we played on top of the cuttings that the new road went through. We were having fun that day when along came his mother and his sister. They were walking to our largest nearby town (Neath and the strike was still on.)
His mother called up to him to tell him about the key being left in a 'secret place' that only they knew in case he wanted to go home. After we played for a few more hours, Glyn decided to go home and get something to eat. Away we went and he took me in with him. After our eats, we played hide and seek. His mother came home and the place was all turned upside down. She went mad. I happened to be under the table hiding. She dragged me out and gave me a good going over and then she realized it was not her son Glyn, but it was I. She was so sorry when she realized her mistake, I had a "right face," believe me. She took me home and told my Mother what had happened and how sorry she was. I can tell you, for a few days after the incident I had lots of goodies from her.
As the years went on, her son Glyn went to collage, he was a very well educated boy; he was the best in the whole of our street. In the following years I did not see much of Glyn he was busy studying for his collage exams. But I did enjoy the little time I had with him and he taught me a lot of things, he was a very nice boy and I will never forget that time at the weekend he had taken me to play with him.
It was not long after that incident that his father, who was a fireman in the coal mines, had a very bad accident, and got burnt very badly over all over his body. The "shot" (explosion) went off accidentally and he never did go back in the mines.
I would like to explain what a fireman's job is, in the mines. It is a very important job, and he is the only person that is allowed to fire the shot when we need to drill a hole in the coal or stone, some times we have to wait for the fireman to get to our place of work. He is responsible for checking all gases before firing the shot. It is a very highly paid job after passing all the necessary exams - this was in the year 1926.
At that time I still had Glyn taking me on the weekends to play with him. I only had one more year in the infant school. The biggest thing that I can remember is embedded in my memory. The strike had now been running for almost five months, this meant we did not have any public buses and we had to walk everywhere. I was coming home from our school one afternoon and was crossing the bridge. I happened to look across to the village "square" where there was an official stop for the buses. There was a bus parked there! So I got excited, and ran all the way home to tell my mother what I had just seen. She told me that the strike was over. This meant there would be no more soup kitchens. Oh boy! I was pleased, because I used to hate going to them.
We finished school for the summer holidays and when we return back to school in September. I was six years old. After this year it will be my last in the infant school. We move up to class one next year, I'm not looking forward to it, I loved it in the infant school. That year went much to soon. We were learning English the last few years. I did not get into any trouble all through the rest of that year. Again all through the rest of our school days we did not learn any more Welsh, it was English only.
We once again had lots of fun during those six weeks holiday. Our parents could not afford to take us anywhere on holiday in those days when we were young. We still enjoyed our time and found lots of things to do every day in the country village. We did have small sports day and I still remember all those happy days.
Now the time had come to go back to school after the holiday. This will be the last year in the infant's school, 1927. We had a good year and after school we had plenty of our usual games, and climbing mountings when we set off for picnics. If we had nice weather we would go up the mountain to use the farmers sheep dip pool that was the only place we had for swimming. We knew no better way then being able to enjoy ourselves, and that was our life in those days. The pool was only three foot deep at one end as it was made by the farmer, and the stream had clean flowing water. The farmer only used it every spring time, and then let us use it for a little dip.
Once more it was time to put our enjoyment away and back to school. I was now seven years old. We went back on the Monday 3rd September 1927. It didn't take long for my teacher to notice that I was not showing any interest in the basic schoolwork that we were being taught, so my teacher called to see my mother to tell her. I got a good talking to, but I just wanted to stay in the infant school. My Mam told me that I could not go back to the infant school, and if I did not settle down my Mam would have to talk to my Dad. I knew what my punishment would be and no way was I going to miss out on my entertainment again. The rest of my time I soon settled down until we left school on our 14th birthday that was the age we finished school in those days.
We did not try to go to collage as we knew my family could not afford to send us, because in those days they had to pay for everything plus a special uniform and bus fare to go to Neath collage. There were three sisters in our family that left home and went to live in London, I did not blame my Mam and Dad, they always saved to give us a good Christmas and I now appreciated my Dad for doing odd jobs around the village after working all day, so that he could give us a good enjoyable time, and I will never forget how wonderful they were. The rest of my family never appreciated how good they both were.
My Dad did not give us the strap, however, he always punished us by stopping our "goodies" and so believe me I tried to be good. We did the same to our Keith when he was growing up. I must say we did not get much trouble from him. I wonder if this would work today?
Eventually I did settle down again, according to my Mam. My school days after that was concentrated on sport, but I still got into trouble many a time, for not concentrating on my other schoolwork. As time went on, I did learn many other things. I did not realize in those days how important it was to have a good education and today they do not leave until they are eighteen years old, that's if they do not pass to go to higher school; we did not get a chance in our days; the education has improved a lot since my time.
In those days we had nothing set up for us. We had to create all of our own entertainment. We had no fields to play in, but the farmer had plenty of fields. We used to go and have some fun there. However, if the farmer caught us, or the village bobby caught us, we were in big trouble. The bobby would go and tell my father and that meant no "goodies" or "pictures" (in Canada "movies") for a few weeks. If the bobby surprised us we would get a smacked bottom from him. He never did take it any further, I did not get many smacked bottoms because as I said, I was a very fast runner - the bobby seldom caught me.
My Dad was friendly with the bobby after that incident when he went to his aid; he always let me get away with my pranks. When my Dad came home from the pub one night, the bobby was off duty and was having a drink with my Dad. I was in bed and I heard my Dad say to my Mam, "The bobby had said 'George, that son of yours is so fast that I can never catch him.'" My Dad must have told him to give me a smacked bottom.
When we were in the year 1931 Thum ("Tommy" in Canada) and we had a new chore to do every afternoon before going back to school. This was because our brothers had now started working and we had to take the job over of collecting milk from the farm. I must tell you about one bad thing my friend Thum and I did. This happened when we were 11 years old. We had to go home for dinner because there were no meals in school. We could have taken sandwiches and eaten them in the cloakroom, however we only did that if our mothers were out for the day.
One of the jobs the older boys had was to go to the farm for the milk. Thum and I had the job of going for the milk to the farm across the way after we got old enough to work. Of course, inevitability in the first few weeks we got ourselves into "bother" because we used to drink a little of the milk before we got it home. Naturally my mother noticed that she wasn't getting a full pint when we first started, and she asked me if that is what we got from the farmer. We both said "yes." She must have got in touch with the farmer, because the next day he had us both in his house and eventually, we told the truth (after bribing us with candy, that was). He also said he would not tell our mothers so long as we did not do it again, and we never did. As you now know my Mother was a strong believer in the Lord above, and always told us to say our prayers before going to sleep every night. I would always asked God to forgive me if I did wrong!
TO BE CONTINUED