Mrs. Wilson sets a brisk pace and we walk steadily for some time. The cold air hurts my lungs. I’m gasping for breath when Mrs. Wilson finally stops and says, “Here we are. This is my wee cottage.”
The stone cottage has two windows in the front and a chimney at either end. Stone steps lead to a central door covered by a small extension of the roof. Inside, one hearth is in use for cooking. There’s only one room.
“Ah. I know what you’re thinking,” Mrs. Wilson says. “Ye want to know how we all fit. The lasses have pallets for sleeping. You and I will share the bed.”
“Your sons aren’t here then?” I ask.
“Not at the moment. They both work at farms in the area and sleep there. They visit every few weeks.”
I take my hat off. I’m perplexed. “I thought you came back so your sons could attend school.”
“Aye. But when classes end for the summer, they work to earn money for the following year. We canna pay their tuition if they dinna work,” Mrs. Wilson says in her thick Scottish brogue.
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