Friday, 31 January 2014

A Virgin Case - Sepia Saturday


I struggled to find anything appropriate for association with a suitcase until I remembered a story, 'A Virgin Case,' written about my journeys to Mexico some years ago. Let me introduce you to Anita, the case in question.

'Anita' Antler
This isn't actually Anita but a more recent model. Not that Anita's shy; it's just that I can hear her sobbing inside her black plastic bag up there in our loft. Her sobbing is not so loud as it used to be before the extra 4 inches of insulation was added to aid to reducing our energy consumption

My acquaintance with Anita began when I was looking for a larger case in which to carry Mexican training course material. She was to replace a smaller relative who had done sterling service in Europe and the Middle East. As you can see Adam is looking rather tired as a result.

Adam Antler

The last thing Anita was told before she left a North East department store was to beware of anyone trying to undo her zips!

She was to share her trips to Mexico with Sam Sonite, a small shoulder bag.

Sam Sonite

Sam was always bragging about his superiority which earned him the right to travel in the warm cabin of the planes while Anita had to resist the attentions of loads of luggage down in the cold hold.

These days Sam would have been accused of sexual harassment for all the things he said he would like to do to Anita when he got her alone

On early morning in a Mexico City hotel bedroom the earth moved for Anita. 

No - not due to Sam; just a little 'trembolo,'  an earthquake to you and me.

Note: 'A Virgin Case' is much too long a story to tell in full. You will just have to be satisfied with what appears above.

In case that is not enough then I suggest you take a look at what other Sepians have to say this week at Sepia-saturday-213.



Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Threesies - Thematic Photography




I've fooled about a bit today to meet Carmi's 'Threeies' theme. This Tuesday  is when our recycling  bins are emptied and there at the bottom of our drive were the empty containers for everyone to see.

Recycling containers
Blue box for glass; white bag (on side) for newspapers and on the right the larger white bag for cans, plastic and cardboard emptied every two weeks if you remember to put them out by the kerbside early in the morning.

The local fields are full of pregnant ewes; it will soon be lambing time. I see them every day when I walk to fetch a paper.

 A threesome in waiting

I have to pass the village playing field on the way and it has a colourful threesome on show.

Playground threesome

When my wife arrived home from the shops I found a threesome threesie among her goods. It didn't photograph very well.
Three threesies
If you could read the labels, reading left to right for each column, there is a threesie for £10 and two threesies for £6.


I decided I'd better be more serious for my next two threesies and return to Tresco on the Isles of Scilly.

Tresco Abbey Gardens
Statue of the Dorien-Smith children, symbolic of the freedom of the islands
This permits me to finish with a threesie of our own.

Adrian, Andrew & Rachel, Cromwell's Castle, Tresco 2008
So you have eight threesies to pick from here and I'm sure you'll find lots of others via Thematic-photographic-279.


Sunday, 26 January 2014

Landscapes - Sunday Stamps

I had a number of stamps to chose from for Viridian's geology/landscapes theme this week but finally settled for a set from 1966.

Great Britain - Landscapes, 2 May 1966

As is often the case in sets like this there is one from each of the countries - England, Ireland, Wales and Scotland. Somehow, to me, a castle seems out of place in a set like this.

For other scenes you should amble over and check out the links at Sunday-Stamps-155. 


Friday, 24 January 2014

Snow Conditions - Sepia Saturday

I guess we have been lucky so far this winter as conditions have not been right for snow - plenty of rain however. 

Despite working for nearly ten years in Norway I never made it to the ski slopes as I would have need to have done to have any personal shots to match this week's prompt.


So I went looking for appropriate pictures from the past. I even managed to find one from Norway.

Skiing in Strandalen 1924
(County Archives in Sogn and Fjordane)
I have tried my hand a sledging but not as long ago as this.

Sledding & Skiing in Frognebakken (Oslo, Norway) 1903
(Anders Beer Wilson 1865 - 1949 - Norwegian Museum of Cultural Heritage)
Before I went to Norway we had snow in the UK of course and our children were please to pose with (on) the beginnings of a snowman (or was it just a large snowball?)

Andrew, Rachel & Adrian (early 1970s)
It seems to me that the snow was much deeper here in the USA.

Cody (or Scout) - Michigan 2011
The most snow I remember was in the winter of 1947 when the Rutland village where I lived had that much snow that the boys were able to hack out large caves in the snow. Unfortunately no-one had a camera so you will have to take my word for it; it was the snowiest winter since 1814 and I don't believe there has been one like it since.



For other snowy conditions you should plough across to Sepia-Saturday-212.



Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Greyish - Thematic Photography

We have had some winter fogs the last two days but there is no sign of one today when Carmi gas set us a 'greyish' theme. So I looked back to January a few years ago and this is what I found.

Not fog, but snow blotting out the sky.
However there was sufficient fog to ground helicopters when we visited Tresco on the Isles of Scilly in August 2008.

Hill fog - Tresco, 2008
And enough to distort the shape of rocks on the same day.

A 'beast' in the mist

The foggiest shot I have taken for a while I posted late last year in another of Carmi's TP themes (here when you scroll down).

For other greyish views check out the links at Thematic-Photographic-278.



Sunday, 19 January 2014

Pets on Sunday Stamps

I bought two sets of stamps this week from my local market trader. One was the set of George Stubbs paintings featuring dogs - but I will save that for another time. The other set was just right for this week's theme of 'Pets.'

Great Britain
The set commemorated the 150th anniversary of the Royal Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in 1990.

Here are the other three that make up the set.
Great Britain
Pick your favourite and guess which one is mine before you check out other pets, including one of the dogs painted by Stubbs, at Viridian's Sunday-Stamps-154.


Thursday, 16 January 2014

Memorials - Sepia Saturday

You might describe this post as a work in progress. I do not have a photo of a soldier from WWI like the one in this week's prompt.


I know that my father and at least one of his brothers took part in that 'war to end all wars.' I know this because of the Roll in the porch to St Mary's Church in the Rutland village of Ketton.

Roll of those who served in His Majesty's forces in the War of 1914-1918
Enlarged section
My uncle Stan (Scotney HCS) was a Sergeant in the Bedfordshire Yeomanry; the first brigade fought at the Battle of the Somme in 1916. I do not know whether my uncle was there, but he would have been 21 at the time. Stan never married and died in the early 1960s. He  left me £149 in his will which we used to buy our first car.

My father, Charles William Arthur Scotney, was a Private in the Army Service Corps (ASC). Born in 1897 he would have been 17 when the war started. I'm sorry to say that is all I know at this time as I have still to find his (or his brother's) war records.

There are no photos of him that have survived from his life. The ASC was the Corps responsible for getting supplies to the armies. A lot of the transport in those days was drawn by mules or horses. My grandfather had been a saddler and harness maker by trade and I know that my father had learnt the skills from him. I like to think that he would have been able to put these to use when in the ASC.

If you look back at the Roll in Ketton church you will see names in a different colour at the top. These are the 38 men who did not return. Counting names on the Roll cannot be completed from the photo but I estimate about 150 survived the bloodshed.

As far as I know there is no war memorial in Kirklevington, the village where I now live. The village is quite small with a population of 1295 in 2001. However is does have a village hall.

Kirklevington and Castlelevington Memorial Hall
The hall was opened and dedicated in December 1954 as a war memorial to those who died in the two world wars. The structure at the front has since been replaced by a new building in 1983.

The town of Yarm, about three miles away, has some special events scheduled for 2014 as part of the commemorations of WWI.

Yarm War Memorial
When you look at the inscriptions this is what you can see.

Yarm War Memorial - those lost in WWI (The Great War)
Lives lost in WWI
I have counted 56 names in these two photos. The population in Yarm in 1914 was 500/600 people. (8674 in 2001). On Remembrance Day this year it is intended to display a wall of poppies on the town's buildings projected over a map of Yarm  showing each of the soldiers names and where they lived.

I just might be there, with a camera at the ready.

To see who others are remembering march over to Sepia-Saturday-211,

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

In Another City - Thematic Photography

These photos were taken during a visit to Denmark in 2007.

The Amalienborg Palace consists of four palaces located round an octagonal courtyard; they have identical facades.

Amalienborg Palace, Copenhagen
If you are lucky you may get a shot of a sentry marching up and down.

Soldier on Duty at the Amalienborg
Staying on the theme of palaces, I wish I could remember what was on here at the time.

My wife crossing the moat to Rosenborg Palace
Rosenborg Palace, Copenhagen
But visits to cities do not have to just to take in buildings; there is some wildlife too.

Grey-headed Crow
To see what other cities have been crowed about this week just fly over to Carmi's Thematic-photographic-277.



Sunday, 12 January 2014

Auto Legends:The Workhorses - Sunday Stamps

Last year I posted the set of British Auto Legends which showed 6 famous cars. Accompanying the set was this sheet depicting the 'workhorses' of the times.

British Auto Legends: The Workhorses
From left to right:

  • Morris Minor Van used by the Post Office
  • An Austin Taxi Cab
  • Ford Anglia Police Car
  • Land Rover Defender used by HM Coastguard.
These first class stamps were issued on 13 August 2013. I have never seen one used in anger on an envelope.

To see what others have chosen this week just cross over to Viridian's Sunday-stamps-153.

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Photo Archives - Sepia Saturday.

The prompt this week is just the thing to lead me astray; do I concentrate on books or photos or both?


I have found several books which you might classify as old in one way or another, but they did not contain any loose photos - sepia or otherwise. However I do have a box file (not a cardboard box like Alan's) in which are stored sepia photos, postcards and my newest book.

'Sepia Saturday' Box File
The photo on the left has been annotated on the back, "Is it you, or is it me? Mick" My wife is convinced that this is her elder sister Mick when she was young.

The one on the right is the old ferry at Hartlepool.

I left with a bit of a quandary. How do you judge the age of a book - by when it was written or when it was printed? Here's four to illustrate the point.

Chaucer - The Canterbury Tales &
John Bunyan -The Pilgrim's Progress
Chaucer was born about 1340 and died in 1400. He is buried in Westminster Abbey.
Bunyan, born in 1628, died 1688 lies in the Bunhill Fields Cemetery, London along with Daniel Defoe and William Blake.
The Penguin Classic, The Canterbury Tales was first published in 1951 - note the price of 5/-
The New American Library's edition of The Pilgrim's Progress appeared in 1964 at $1.75.

I noticed that the book in our prompt had the text in two columns. I can match that with our copy, a wedding present from 1958, of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare ( baptised in April 1564, died 23 April 1616).

Shakespeare' s The Winter's Tale
The last of my books is The Pickwick Papers, the first novel of Charles Dickens published in 1836.

The Fat Boy Awakes - The Pickwick Papers
What's special about this book for me? Just look at the inscription.

Form Prize at Stamford School 1949
Having been carried away by books I turned back to archives and this file of:

Prospekt Kort (Postcards)
This is the file put together by my daughter while I was working in Norway between 1979 and 1988. The cards are those I sent to her during that time - some have appeared on Sepia Saturday before.

In my archive search I came across some 'old' albums.

I wonder what happened to them
But when I turned the page, this is what I found.

Honeymoon(?) on the left in 1958; our two sons in 1960s
The second album contained more photo's, all in colour.

Cutting Our Wedding Cake
Finally I opened the top drawer of the desk in our lounge and found the largest collection of all.

Photos, photos, photos!
Now I need advice. Do I throw them all away when they are all stored here,


and on the Internet?

For other Sepians' views check out the links on Sepia-Saturday-210.

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

More Favourite Photos of the Year - Thematic Photography

Carmi has continued the 'favourite photo' theme for a second week, so here are another six from 2013 - three from Michigan and three from our Yorkshire garden.

Michigan Deer
And another shot of that grasshopper that appeared in my previous set of favourites.

Grasshopper in the sun
While on a walk from my daughter's home we came across a colourful postbox.

Red Cardinal Postbox
Back in my Yorkshire garden I soon had a helper when I turned the soil.

Female Blackbird waits for worms
This is what a butterfly bush (buddleia) attracts.

Small Tortoiseshell Butterfly
When I opened up our compost bin this came out the bottom.

Garden Frog
Hope you like these further favourites of mine. To see what others have selected just check out the links in the comments at Carmi's Thematic-photographic-277.