Thursday, 29 September 2011

Polo - Sepia Saturday

Alan's picture this week reminded me that the nearest I have got to polo is the mint with the hole in the middle. The first horse on which I was offered a ride threw me off when it's owner, a girl who I don't think liked me, gave it a swipe with her whip.
Pictogram of Olympic Sports - Polo
 (by Thadius 856 - SVG conversion, & Parutakupiu  original image)

Staying with polo and the Olympics this image shows a tournament in progress at the 1900 games in Paris. Only four teams took part - Great Britain, United States, France and Mexico - the gold medal being shared by Great Britain and the United States.
Polo tournament at the 1900 Olympic Games
The game was first played in Persia (Iran) from the 5th century BC, or much earlier, to the 1st century AD and originated there. The modern game though popularised by the British military derived in fact from India.

In India polo was just one form of hockey that was played in the originating state of Manipur. Ladies hockey is known for it skill; mixed hockey for its brutality as ridges on my shins can testify. If you should come across  a St Trinian's type like this - run!
Jolly hockey sticks!
 Thanks to India, the second largest country after China to have a stock of bamboo I'm able to switch to a childhood friend of my daughter. You may have seen him before.
Bamboo at home.
 However to come back to horses, another riderless one, here's one I found at Yarm earlier this week.
 You may catch him if you can and ride to to see what others have found to show at Sepia Saturday 94

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Ketton - A Village in Rutland - Thematic Photography

Carmi's theme this week is "It's in the details." What we post is up to us, so I thought I would take you to the village where I was born. Ketton is in Rutland, England's smallest county.

People who know will say I'm not into religion but the details of my post are about the village church.

St Mary's Church, Ketton
The entrance to the west end of the churchyard is down the lane on the far left. But there are more formal entrances.
The Railway Inn and the church lychgate
The lychgate has the cross on top. Further down the road on the right the church comes into view.
South door and west end
 The elevated path from the lychgate runs between the wall and the gravestones. The west door is hidden by a gravestone under the branches of the yew tree on the left.
West door (Norman style arch)
Perhaps I should say that the church is mentioned in the Domesday Book. Can you see the small hole in the protruding column to the left of the door at roughly the same height at top of the arch. Let's take a look in more detail.
Gnomon hole
A gnomon is the projecting piece of a sundial that shows the time by the shadow it creates. You should be able to see two of the radial graduations below the hole.

Inside the porch of the south door, the main entrance into the church, are notice boards and two rolls commemorating personnel from the village who served in WWI and WWII. I hope you will be able to make out their names.
WWI Roll
My father and one of my uncles appear on this list, my brothers on WWII.
I think that's enough detail for now, so I'll end with a shot of the east end of the church.
St Mary's Church, Ketton
For more details of a myriad of things please visit others participating in Thematic photographic 164 - It's in the details.

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Sunday Stamps - Out of Africa

With over 40 countries in Africa to chose from this week's theme of stamps from African and the Arabian peninsula made it hard to chose.

The fossil finds in East Africa in recent years have confirmed Darwin theories on the descent of man. Many of the hominid findings have been in this region and that's why I chose to start with stamps from the countries that used to be in British East Africa.
Kenya & Tanganyika
Uhuru means freedom I believe and these stamps were issued in 1963 when the countries became independent.
These counties along with Uganda issued common stamps for a while.
Kenya, Uganda & Tanzania
Tanzania was formed by the union of Tanganyika and Zanzibar in 1964.
It was the uprising in Tunisia that began what is today being called the Arab Spring.
Egypt has thrown out its President too, but it was a kingdom until 1953 with the gentleman on the right, King Farouk in charge.
I was going to show a stamp from Libya too but in the process I discovered that the one stamp I have is not from there but from the Lebanon.
I've settled instead for stamps from Zambia. Why? 

'Z' ends the alphabet and these stamps are the last in my World Album.

For more African adventures and some tales from the Arabian Nights please visit Viridian at Sunday Stamps 37

Friday, 23 September 2011

Sandwell Chare - Hartlepool

Earlier I put up this postcard of Sandwell Gate in Hartlepool's town wall. The eagle-eyed among you will see that the wording on the card says, 'Ancient Water Gate Sandwell Chare Hartlepool 1908'.
Sandwell Gate & Sandwell Chare
It checking other details about Hartlepool I came across this photograph taken from the other direction.
Sandwell Chare looking towards Sandwell Gate.
This photo comes from the Museum of Hartlepool's Flickr photostream. It is from The Pattinson Collection (Hartlepool Museum), a group of images taken by the Reverend James Whitehead Pattinson during the latter years of the 19th Century, in and around the Hartlepool and Bishop Auckland areas.

Thursday, 22 September 2011

To sleep; perchance to dream

Ay, there's the rub.

With Alan's Sepia Saturday photo this week being of a man asleep I was reminded of a not so private joke in our family. As I've grown older there has been a greater tendency for me to fall asleep in the evening. Hence someone saying, "Bob, you're tired. Go to bed."

I maintain that this is what inspired my daughter to send me this photo taken a few years ago on a trip to Washington DC.

I've been on a few red-eyed flights in my time but always managed to avoid travelling by sea. Perhaps as well because I don't think I would have appreciated  sleeping arrangements like this,
Steerage aboard SS Great Britain
Travelling on business can be a bit of a dog's life. I've always envied the way a dog can lie down and dream - presumably about the the finer things in life.
Tired Golden Labrador Pup
Some people of course may sleep for ages - Rip Van Winkle springs to mind. However Britain's oldest known poet has been asleep for quite a while.
Memorial to Caedmon, St Mary's Churchyard, Whitby, North Yorkshire
(By Richard Thomas - CC A-S A 2.0 license)

Cædmon is the earliest English poet whose name is known. An Anglo-Saxon who cared for the animals he was attached to the double monastery of Streonæshalch (Whitby Abbey) during the abbacy (657–680) of St Hilda (614–680), he was originally ignorant of "the art of song" but learned to compose one night in the course of a dream, according to the 8th-century monk Bede. He later became a zealous monk and an accomplished and inspirational religious poet. (ex wikipedia)

As Cædmon cared for animals I decided to end with a dreamer of the future.
Sweet dreams.
 For more dreams that hopefully won't require you to go to sleep, please visit Sepia Saturday 93l

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Eating Vegetables

Carmi set us a theme this week that I thought I would be unable to match until I remembered that Yarm, voted by the BBC to have the best High Street in England a few years back, had a greengrocer's shop. Mind you it now has to compete with three supermarkets all within easy reach.

The shopkeeper was most surprised when I asked his permission to take photos inside his shop. So take your pick - there's no chance take you cannot meet the recommended five a day if you buy your vegetables here.
Greengrocer's shelves

Fancy that bag of Brussel Sprouts?
A further selection
I f none of these take your fancy please feel free to check out others at Eat your veggies!

Monday, 19 September 2011

Fleamarket Postcards - Sandwell Gate, Hartlepool

The Heugh a peninsula or headland in the North East of England is familiarly known as Old Hartlepool. It may have been an isolated tidal island in prehistoric times. Excavations in the 19th century unearthed trunks of trees believed to be the remnants of an ancient forest. Antlers and teeth  recovered indicated that deer inhabited the area in those earlier times.

The Anglo-Saxon name for Hartlepool was Heret eu or Stag Island. This refers either to the shape of the headland or indicates the presence of forest deer. Heret eu later became known as Hart, a district covering the Heugh and the nearby villages of Hart and Billingham. The word ‘pool’ was added to distinguish the headland from Hart,

In the 13th century the port and fishing town of Hartlepool was fortified by defensive walls built round the headland. Some parts of Hartlepool’s ancient wall remain, including Sandwell Gate.
Sandwell Gate 1908 (unused postcard)
 Photographer Alfred Price

A modern photo from Flickr shows the gate in recent times:
Sandwell Gate
 (ex flickr - by twiggles - CC BY-NC 2.0 license)

The postcard appears to be one of a series of local Heritage Prints by Alfred Price (1890-1912)

Sunday, 18 September 2011

South American ABC - Sunday Stamps

With South America as this week's theme I thought I should start with the alphabet.

'A' is for Argentina, and it so happens that this country has a stamp that shows the whole continent.
The second largest country in South America, Argentina gained its independence in 1816 and issued its first stamps in 1858.

'B' is for Brazil, the largest country in the continent; independent in 1822 Brazil became a republic in 1889. The Amazon flows from its source in the Peruvian Andes 4000 miles through Brazil to the Atlantic.
'C' is for Chile which lies between the Andes and the South Pacific. Chile's Juan Fernandez Islands are supposed to be where Robinson Crusoe was shipwrecked.

Chile (my one and only stamp)

'E' is for Ecuador which became independent in 1822. Ecuador includes the Galapagos Islands so I'm pleased that I have a stamp of its fauna, a splendidly named bird on a 1977 stamp.
If like me you don't know Spanish, the bird is a Red-legged Boobie.

I  had only one stamp from other countries on the continent and so had to give Guyana (formerly British Guiana), Paraguay, Peru and Venezuela a miss and settle for the letter 'U'.

'U' is for Uruguay, the smallest of the South American republics which borders on the Atlantic; its first stamps were issued in 1856.
I understand that 'encomiendas' means 'parcels' 

For other stamps from down South America way you need to visit Viridian at Sunday Stamps 36

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Off My Trolley

You may think that I am behaving in an extremely unusual way or doing something very silly as I decided to pick up on the trolley in Alan's picture of the London & North Western Railway office. Trolleys are my theme for the week.
World War I Daily Mail Official War Photograph, Series 21, No. 121, titled "One of our monster guns".
On the back it said, "Passed by Censor" and "One of our monster guns with which we are hammering our way forward is seen travelling on a railway trolley".

If war is not to your taste then how about Harry Potter?
Platform 9.3/4 at Kings Cross Station
( by Matthewedwards at en.wikipedia - CC A-S A 3.0 license)
with a trolley disappearing through the wall between platforms 9 and 10.

This lad is no apprentice magician but he is proud of the trolley he rides,
Karrawang woodline, south west of Coolgardie, Western Australia, May 1928. (CC A 2.0 generic license)
 This photo comes from the W E Fretwell Collection  -Photographs of  William Edward Fretwell (1874-1958). The boy in the photo is H N Fretwell who wrote of this photograph:

"These woodlines used to supply timber to the mines and Kalgoorlie Power House. The lines were moved about to follow the salmon gum forests. The rails were leased from the W.A. Govt. Railways by the Timber Co. and once a year this trolley had to be run all over the line and spurs to measure the distance. H.N. Fretwell on Trolley. Timber cutters were nearly all Yugo-Slavs."

However my trolley search ended much closer to home.
Blackpool Balcony Car - by Dr Neil Clifton -1 Aug 1959
(CC A-S A 2.0 generic license)
Abalcony car seen near the Tower.  By 1959, traditional trams like the Blackpool Standards were considered very old-hat. They had been removed from almost all British cities, and the last few remaining in Blackpool were felt to be an embarrassment - but on very busy days they had to be brought out. Car No 40, still retaining its open ends, was not an object for Blackpool to be proud of. It is seen here reversing at a point which, in those days, was called 'Central Station' (that railway establishment nearby still remained open). Note the conductor with his long bamboo pole for reversing the trolley arm.

You will not need a bamboo pole to get back on track. Just visit Sepia Saturday 92

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

A Frog in the Spotlight - Thematic Photography

Let me introduce you to Rana Clamitans, the American Green Frog. I've posted about him/her twice before but I have only just realised that the series of shots I took would also meet Carmi's theme of 'light.' I can't say this was intentional but this series of pictures was taken on the same day over a short period of time and there may be more than one frog involved.

For other tricks of the light visit Carmi at Thematic Photographic 162