Friday, 27 May 2011

Monday, 16 May 2011

Family history :
Do you remember way back in February when I moved house ? I’m sure I told you that I had grand plans for the garden... My lovely dad has been staying with us this week, creating a wonderful deck  for us using reclaimed timber. I intend to give you a full update on that, with lots of before and after pictures later on in the week, but before that I tell you about something else we’ve been up to...
My aunt in Canada recently scanned some of our old family photo’s and put them on a cd. Dad and I have had a few late nights looking through them and recounting the stories attached.
The pictures span the period from the early 1900’s up to the 1960’s.
This is the earliest of the photo’s,  and shows my great-grandparents Annie and Aaron (in about 1910), with their two eldest children.  If you look carefully at Aaron, you will see that he is missing his right arm.  He was the unfortunate victim of an industrial accident in a sawmill when he was only twelve. Luckily for him, the family had a little bit of money set aside and were able to send him to university, as he was no longer able to work in the sawmill. He spent the remainder of his career as a teacher.

The second picture in the series shows my grandmother Marie, at her graduation in 1925.
She had a distinguished career, firstly as a district nurse in the extreme north of Canada (undertaking her rounds by a combination of dog-sled, horse and bush plane).  With the onset of the second world war, she worked in England, caring for the injured in London’s hospitals.
The pictures below (taken later on in her career) shows her in an interesting combination of clothes, wearing her district nurses uniform (including shoes, cape and wide brimmed hat), with leather riding chaps over the top.

J’s record of the week :
‘Everything stops
for tea.’
Written by
Al Hoffman

After deciding to feature my old family pictures in the blog this week, I just had to choose a retro song for my record of the week. My grandmother, Marie would have been 107 this year. One of my favourite memories of her, is reminiscing about her war time experiences, when I was about ten. The upshot of which was in her teaching me the words to this song – one of her favourites  ! It was written by Al Hoffman in 1935 for the film ‘Come out of the pantry.’  Thanks Marie ! Jerushah X

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Going Underground

Non-flattened fauna :
Well... While most of the country were poised in front of the television waiting for Will and Kate to tie the knot, what was Jerushah doing ? Making the most of the extra day off and driving to Cornwall of course !
The journey down was for the most part uneventful, but with two notable exceptions... At approximately 11.20pm a very skilful badger managed to dash out in front of me on the A303, pick the exact spot in between my front wheels, stay there for a split second then dash out from between the wheels on the passenger side of the car – I saw his little white tail disappearing in my rear view mirror.
At approximately 2.15am, when I was approaching our first stop in Calstock, I saw two glowing eyes in the distance on the road. I realised it was quite a large animal as the glowing eyes were about three feet off the ground... ‘Is it the beast of Bodmin ?’ I asked myself, to which I replied ‘No silly - you’re on Dartmoor, not Bodmin Moor!’ As I came closer, I could see antlers and realised it was a deer – wandering very lazily across the road. Perhaps he was returning from a night out on the tiles ?

On the way home it was a bit sad to see that there were many, many animal casualties on the roads as a result of the extra bank holiday traffic. Obviously as an environmental scientist, I am all for recycling, but being a vegetarian of many years standing, I can’t really encourage any ‘recycling’ of animal road casualties. However, I recently read a newspaper article featuring a man who likes nothing better than badger sandwiches :
All I can say is I am really glad our badger lived to tell the tale !

Going underground :
In addition to our mandatory amount of sun, swim and sand, we did something equally Cornish and spent a large proportion of Sunday poking around in a tin mine. Knowing it was likely to be rough going, ‘S’ and me wore our best wellies and waterproofs. It was good thing too, as it was raining on the surface and there were waterfalls from the roofs of the tunnels – there was so much water that some sections of the floor had to be pumped out before we entered them, as the water was too deep to walk through.  It was a shame that no one had told the lady in front of us though, she was wearing a very swanky leather jacket and expensive looking leather boots !

J’s record of the week :
‘Going underground’
The Jam

As you know, I’m usually more of a soul, R&B and reggae aficionado, and apologies in advance for the rather dodgy link, but this week I’ve chosen ‘Going underground’ by The Jam. I don’t quite know why, but I found myself subconsciously humming it as we crawled through the dark dampness of the mine ! I remember this song getting to number one when I was only five, and playing along to it with an upturned biscuit tin and two wooden spoons ! Enjoy ! Jerushah x