The Moo and the Dougalist

To this day, I can’t actually tell you what The Moo looked like. I was very very small, and I was so terrified of it that I always ran inside and hid until it had gone past. It was a hideous monster, like the panic-inducing hoover (vacuum cleaner) which reared up with a terrifying roar every time my mum leveraged it on its back wheels to turn it.  The Moo was much much worse than the hoover, because it was truck-sized with enormous tubes that made an even more scarily deafening racket as it lumbered up our street.  Of course now I know, thanks to Google,  that it was a cleaning truck that aspirated muck through its tubes: a vacuum sewer cleaner to be precise.

But what about the dougalist (pronounced doogalist)? To this day I don’t know what a dougalist ‘really’ is: it’s a sort of twisty pointy sticky-up thing that I would see on churches and cathedrals in northern England.  Dougalist,  in some way I couldn’t (and still can’t) explain, embodied what for infant me was the essence of, well, this twisty pointy thingamajig.

What words did you make up when you were small?

Manchester Cathedral with dougalists

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