Jean grew up in Chelmsford Street Newtown and was part of an extensive family network. On his return from the First World War her father's health was broken (he had to scrape around for a living because his health was so bad). The Depression years brought further misery, but her Dad had a horse and sulky and sold rabbits, coal and wood. Jean and her friend Kathleen wandered around Newtown and Erskineville and one of the great joys was sneaking up into the gods at the Majestic Theatre and watching the vaudeville (They used to leave the door open so we could; they never locked it deliberately, they knew there were kids there) or eluding the sexton from St Stephen's in a maze of tracks through the blackberry bramble that overrun the cemetery (we thought that was hilarious). Jean provides a warm and colourful account of family life as a child and into early adulthood which saw her employed by the Navy at Cremorne draughting charts as part of the WWII war effort.