101 candles on Irene’s cake

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Ron Smith Care Centre resident Irene Watson celebrated her 101st birthday on 8 September.

Irene was born in 1921 in County Durham, England. Her father Richard was a farmer, while her mother Harriet assisted the local midwife.

“My first job was in the counting house of a huge department store. To transfer money, we put it into a tube and into a special shoot, where it would go whooshing through to its destination,” she says.

Irene met her husband Reginald at a dance in Darlington and they married as soon as the war was over in 1945.

After Reginald got a job in Bulawayo, Irene travelled by ship with her two young children, for 15 days, from South Hampton, England, to Cape Town. “Then we travelled by train for two days to Bulawayo,” says Irene.

She enjoys listening to light music on the radio; and loves the lake, trees, flowers, gardens, birds and ducks at Ron Smith Care Centre. Irene also enjoys her visits with her daughter Fiona Martin.