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Eva Smith's Diary

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September 1910 Dear Diary, Today felt like a dream. Except this time it wasn't a dream. That same, recurring dream which left me breathless on so many nights, and now it had happened. That dream which always seemed to be lodged in my mind, yet somehow I didn't quite believe would ever happen. Even now I can't quite come to believe it. It was this dream which drove me to working so hard, which I fought to suppress through those weeks on strike. And now I start to wonder, should I have listened to that dream? Thoughts rush through my head and flood my mind, so fast I can hardly think. So many questions had been left unanswered, and now they dawned on me. And there is still one question which troubles me most, why did Birling have to sack me, along with 4 other 'ring leaders', but no-one else? Why me? I didn't see myself as a 'ring leader'. I was one of their best workers, or so I was told. I could easily argue with myself day and night, but I would only end up exactly where I started. Almost three weeks ago it started. We, the workers, had recently come back from the holidays, and we were all strapped for cash. We had already had thoughts of a strike, and we all knew that Birling was underpaying us for the amount of work we did. We were averaging around twenty-two and six each week, only just enough to survive on. We all felt we deserved more, so we could average about twenty-five shillings a week. ...read more.


I had no chance of getting another decent job. It was worse than my fears had imagined. Old Joe Meggarty had wedged me into a corner, his fat sweaty hands searching all over me. It was then when I saw a handsome, kind looking man gazing into my eyes. I caught his gaze and he knew it was a cry for help. He came over to the old man and told him some nonsense - that the manager had a call for him or something like that. He said I should never have been loitering around in a place like that, with people like Alderman Meggarty around. He rushed me off to the Country Hotel, where he bought me a few drinks and we talked. We talked for hours and hours, and it felt so incredible, just to be able to talk. Suddenly words tumbled out of my mouth like they had never done before. He asked me questions about my life, and I opened up like I had done to no one before. I answered his questions, but never have him exact details. It just seemed that he was interested and wanted to hear what I had to say. I hadn't meant to tell him so much, but I was powerless to stop myself. My name stayed as Daisy Renton, but he soon found out I was hopelessly penniless and at the time particularly hungry. So, extremely generously, he gave me enough money to keep me going for a while and managed to get me some food. ...read more.


Of course the rest of the story collapsed with the name. I had no claim to it and ended up having to tell her the truth. She had insisted before that I should go out and find the father of the child; that all of this was his fault and his responsibility. All of it was unbelievable, even absurd to me. With the truth came the revelation that I knew who the father was, and that I could never bring myself to marrying him. This seemed unbelievable to her, and when she heard my reasons for refusing both money and marriage, she had lost all patience with me. So it ended there. She used her influence so that my claim for assistance would never be allowed. My last hopefulness had dispersed like feathers in the wind. Even when she heard the truth bleed from my lips, she hadn't believed a word of it. She knew I was crying out desperately for help, but her ignorance wouldn't let her believe it. This is where it ends. This will be my last entry. Where I go from here, I do not know. I'm on the brink of suicide, whether I have the nerves to go through with it is another matter. I have nothing to live for, nothing to die for. Just a tiny little baby forming inside of me. Even if it were to live; what would it live with? No money, no home, only a mother to care for it. Next to nothing. Never again shall my mind be flooded and overflowing with thoughts...never again. Only one choice lies ahead of me now. The final decision...the end. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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