Saturday, January 19, 2013

Sepia Saturday 160 : At Peace With The Parrots


I am on the beach again this week for Sepia Saturday, although the focus of attention is not just on those in the forefront of the photograph. The possible themes for SS160 include what is going on in the background of pictures and people facing in different directions. My chosen photograph comes from the collection of my Uncle Frank Fieldhouse : and yes, the good news for all of her many fans from around the world, is that it features Auntie Miriam (front, right behind the girl with the big bow in her hair).

Being one of Uncle Frank's photographs, I have a mass of information about it. The album page is headed "We went a few times to Caister On Sea but it is only a small place" and it is dated July-Aug 1948.  As you can see, whilst they were at Caister they met Mr and Mrs Parrot from Mansfield - and one assumes the little parakeet with a bow in her hair. The original photograph is only 3 inch by 2 inch, but a good scanner can bring out so much detail from a photograph.

Look at Mr Parrot with his bowler hat, the very picture of a bank clerk or a public drains inspector on holiday. Look at the thick coats slung over the back of the deck chairs, protection against that wind blowing in from the North Sea I spoke about last week.


But look at the background : people going to the left and people going to the right. People reading books and people gently nodding off in the afternoon sun.


It all looks so long ago, another time in history, so long before we came into this modern world. But the Frankian precision of the dates allows me to say that, just as this photograph was being taken, a young lad was coming into this world in a grim mill town, some hundred miles to the north of here. One day that young lad would browse through the dusty albums his Uncle Frank left him and wonder to himself, what was going on in this photograph?

You can see how other people from all around the world are interpreting this weeks' Sepia Saturday theme image by going along to the Sepia Saturday Blog and following the links.

22 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. I wonder what the book was? (Wow! Not A Kindle in sight!) What they would have thought of being viewed (around the world here!) !!!
    Alan, I remember (vividly)being lost on Blackpool Beach when i was 5 years old/having to go to policeman who found my Mum&Dad....Maybe somewhere in Sepialand a photo exists?
    Now,there's a thought.....

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  3. Seems really weird that people sat on the beach in their Sunday clothes, but that's exactly what they did.
    It's great that you will go through these photos and share them.

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  4. Even in the sunshine, Caister On Sea can warrant a thick coat. I visited there once in July, and couldn't believe how chilly the wind was.

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  5. They tell me that the good thing about Caister On Sea is that on a clear day you can see The Netherlands :)
    I was disappointed to read that Mr and Mrs Parrot were from Mansfield and not from Bolton.
    Looking forward to more of Uncle Frank's pictures!

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  6. While Uncle Frank and Aunt Miriam, et al were enjoying Caister on Sea, I was not even a consideration. My parents were leading their then-separate lives, both probably getting their clothes and books together to head off to college the next month.

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  7. I've been on holiday at Caister more than once in the 1950's. We alwasy needed a windbreak for protection even if you found a spot in the dunes.

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  8. welcome to tina´s picstory! :)

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  9. I enjoyed seeing Aunt Miriam and the rest of the family. There sure was a lot going on at the beach that day!

    Kathy M.

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  10. The cosmic synergy inside a photo always increases with the amount of information attached. Without Uncle Frank's date stamp, we could speculate as to the year and never know for sure. If he had used the latest digital camera we would know the time to the millisecond and the exact latitude and longitude. Probably the temperature too.
    But a Parrot is still a Parrot.

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  11. The beach scene was pretty active for what looks a cool day to a Californian. I wonder what moved Uncle Frank to make such detailed notes about the photos? Thank goodness he did.

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  12. What a great time to be at the beach! Send me your sunshine and warmth please! Do you ever wonder what folks back then would think of our beaches today? I'd really love to see those reactions!!!

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  13. We are in the middle of a heatwave in Australia, so there will be plenty of activity on our beaches. However, I can almost guarantee that there won't be a thick coat in sight!

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  14. We have a very cold and strong wind blowing in here right now. It's definitely not beach weather.

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  15. I have to say I think that hat's a homburg or a trilby - not a bowler in sight. One chap at back right has his hat on his head, risking its imminent departure in that stiff wind.

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  16. A fascinating unusual angle on the prompt.

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  17. Was it really that cold in the fifties, or was I simply spoilt by the tropical climes of the South Coast?

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  18. Looks like a fine day at the beach. Right now I can't seem to take "Park" off my mind after reading 'Mansfield.' Probably too much Jane Austen in my head today.

    Hello to Auntie Miriam. Thanks for dropping by my nook and for the warm welcome.

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  19. The more I see of Auntie M the more I notice the family resemblance Alan.Something about the eyes I think. I too have a similar beach photo (and of similar size) where the family are arrayed in deck chairs and for some reason my mother is the only one wearing sunglasses!

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  20. I love that you share your photos, their stories, and your reflections with us. And I have become quite inexplicably fond of your Auntie Miriam!

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  21. I cannot remember one time at the beach where people were wearing coats unless it was winter and they were ice skating or ice fishing. In August of 1948 I was still an only child and 2 years old living in Springfield with no ocean in sight.

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  22. Formal dressing on the beach seems a little excessive to me,
    but one can't account for the mentality back then.
    Going to the beach means experiencing the elements,
    not hiding from them. That's how I see it anyway.
    I guess they didn't have the sunscreen we have now!!!
    :D~
    HUGZ

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