Shirley Graham-Paul

Born: Not given

Kingston, Jamaica

Date of interview: 6th June 2006

Map showing where Shirley Graham-Paul came from

Can I just take you back...So Cyril was your husband?

Yes. Children's father.

Anyway, got here and ... started to go to Reading Technical College ... and ... I wanted a part-time job, cause I had my youngest baby then. I didn't want to leave her so ... when he's home and I could go ... and do a part time job, when he's home I can go to college in the evenings. So I went to Boots. Boots had advertised for [pause] [coughing] an assistant ... and I went and asked for the manager and this very smart man came to the door and 'Yes'. And he wouldn't even ask me in. So I said 'You've advertised in the paper for this assistant ... and I'd like to apply. He said 'Actually, the job is taken'. I looked in the paper again and it was in the following week. So I went back and I said 'You're still advertising for the job' and he said 'Oh I'm sorry, they didn't take it out but it is taken.' Then I thought great, no problem. 'Cause the way I was brought up and that's me, my father was a man of principle, you develop a lot of the upbringing.

And then another friend, she were going to college and she was here and I said 'You know something, I would like to do nursing, I want to go in the nursing profession.' She said 'Are you sure' and I said 'Yes, ... they need nurses, they won't say no.' So I applied to do a nurse training and yes, I went for my test and what have you and passed. So ... when I was in what we call PTS then, you know, Pupil Training School. And one day I was going into Reading and I went and then I asked to see this manager again at Boots and I had my uniform on ... and I said to him 'Thank you for not letting me have that job because I'm now being trained as a nurse.' He never said a word. [laughing] Yes, just let me go back and show him. He did me a favour ... I thanked him.