Yesterday once more

I start today with a link to a Flickr image. This shot is by Cath Walker and what made it different was the poem she added on growing old. The poem is not by Cath but she posts lovely images and it is worth having a trawl through her Photostream.

When we were very young my father did not have a car. He could not even drive until he was in his early to mid 40s and that meant we travelled by train or bus. The typical trip was either a bus from Hereford to Llanbradach, changing at Tredegar or a steam train down to the Valleys. It is probably hard for people today, who can travel on a magalev at 400kph +, to understand what the attraction is of steam trains. They were relatively slow, dirty and uncomfortable. I think you have to take a journey on one to understand. The noise, the whistles, the steam………… they were a bit like a rough comfort blanket. The poem lays out some of the things a woman wants to do when she grows old. A host of minor rebellions such as run my stick along the public railings.

Why are only children allowed the licence to do these things? We grown-ups “ought to know better”.  I will start a list of things that I shall do when I am retired. Oh! But I am retired. I need to start rebelling now! Time to go and drop some acid perhaps. I know something to

… give us those nice bright colors 
… the greens of summers 
Makes you think all the world’s a sunny day, oh yeah!

Luckily perhaps for me that’s Kodachrome and not LSD. Maybe I’ll stick to that just a little bit longer. Digitally reproduced sadly. Your ideas on growing old disgracefully gratefully appreciated.

Here – to make the connection – is a shot from yesterday that supposedly gives the effect of Kodachrome 25. it is the yellow iris again. I have reworked yesterday’s shot a couple of times thanks to some helpful suggestions from Steve Gingold but I’m still not sure which I like best. This is a different plant.


And here, by popular demand is a broad shot of the Smartie bugs, or as my wife described them the traffic lights.


And finally, because I am starting to get a thing about bark colours and textures, a tree detail from LNEC.

Bark detail - LNEC

Bark detail – LNEC

Now I need a nap. I’ve been working for almost an hour and we retired folks need our rest. Morning siestas? Oh I am such a rebel.

12 thoughts on “Yesterday once more

  1. The tree and the iris are simply beautiful. You really worked some magic on the iris. So much talent and you are not even aware of your ability to tackle just about anything and the project is mastered.

    As far as growing old- well you are just a spring chicken as we say in Texas or maybe elsewhere as well. About that old subject. I can tell you all you would want to know and perhaps not. I’ve been there and done that, again we say over here. I’m referring to the old thing. I hate growing old. There are so many things that I want to accomplish before I leave this green earth and I hope to live to 95 but my MD casually said I’d make it to 86. Oh well.

    Now the Kodachrome thing. Moons ago I shot Kodachrome- lots of it and loved it. Pics were beautiful. I used Ektachrome too- lots of that as well for slides, I believe. I hope I’m remembering that correcty. So many slides that I would like to put to disc, if possible. See, that is just one of the things that I want to do. I have looked at some of them and the color is still good. They go back to the 70’s and 80’s. You were just a snip of a kid then.

    • Im still hoping to see some of these slides one day, Yvonne but I understand the size of the task. I too have thousands of slides stored away.

      Growing old is tough. No escaping it. But a friend of mine had a father who lived to 101 and looked after himself up to 99! My paternal grandmother went on to be 97 and had all her faculties until a very short time before she passed away. She was badly crippled with arthritis in her hands but still tried to write the odd (short) note to us. It is the male side of the family that doesn’t do so well so I’m trying to make the most of it. Yes, I am a spring chicken in some respects but based on the track record of the male line I am into my last decade. But you never know. I may be the exception and go on a lot longer. It is the quality of life that matters. We all wish you better times and more pictures.

      • Thank you Andrew. I see no reason that must succumb to whatever the men in your family did. Take really good care of yourself and stay with frequent check-ups with your doctor. Don;t begin believing that you will have departed by the time you’re 60 years old. There is no reason you can not live to 70 or even beyond. Your heart and kidneys are dependent on keeping your blood pressure low. I’m talking 130 or 140 at the most. Diastolic should be at about 60-70- and no higher than 80. Just do not indulge in ETOH it does affect the BP. Do some of those stress relieving exercises, physical and mental. I want to know what your BP is doing. Cholesterol and triglycerides? sp? Send an email if you prefer.

      • Yvonne, my BP is nice and low and I have high “good cholesterol” and low “bad cholesterol”. But they told my father that and he dropped dead gardening at the age of 65. Hey ho – always look on the bright side of life! I have 2 excellent doctors who look after me and I am sure I am in good hands. I live in hope.

  2. Those little Smartie Bugs are amazing. And your wife’s name for them is hysterical (and accurate!). I’m big on texture photography and your image of the bark is beautiful.

  3. Dont fall for the rest during the daytime syndrome, else it will be “all downhill from here”!

  4. The Empress is on her knees….LOOOONNNGG day and run out of puff but wanted to let you know that these are great and I shall be bouncing back here tomorrow with a proper comment. Sorry to be so brief. Lottie 😀

  5. The poem was good. Although I think it epitomised rebellion and individuality at any age rather than ageing.

    My parents had a car from ever since I could remember. Usually large and preferably Rover three litres. Nearly as a big as a steam train.

    You must be older than I thought. My partner never got on a steam train in his life in the valleys.

    Maybe they weren’t there or maybe he was walking, running or cycling because he couldn’t afford the fare.

    I rebelled more than ten years ago. I’m afraid the phrase ‘Who ever said: I wished I had spent more time in the office’ on their deathbed, seriously influenced me.

    When I chucked my job to travel the world in my twenties I was met with surprise and shock. When I chucked my job in my forties, I was met with envy that I was moving to southern Europe.

    My worries will always be financial but got to go sometimes where your heart leads. Rattling railings is small in the scheme of things.

    To me there is a difference between a photographic record of the moment and an artistic interpretation that has been created. About which, of neither, I can lucidly add a comment.

  6. I’ve read that poem before and was quite happy to be reminded of its wisdom. As I am already a bit daft, I don’t think anyone will be shocked at my “demise”. 🙂 We all need to keep a bit of our child alive as we age. Those who don’t miss too much of the life about us.

    As I mentioned in our emails, I really like this Iris image quite a bit. Although I do tend to isolate blooms, the addition of the foliage as you have framed here is really very pleasing and I will keep it in mind when the Yellow Flag here is in bloom. Imitation and compliment. 🙂 Your smarties are gorgeous and Shirley named them well. Nice bark study too.

  7. Bouncing back! Let’s start with the link and the poem. I know and love that poem well as a good friend sent it to me a few years ago – I can’t think why!! The photo of the train was excellent and I enjoyed hearing about your travels as a bright, young thing. My Mother didn’t have a car for years either so she used to bicycle everywhere – she was very stylish and wore a long brown cape and suede boots – the Fransiscan monks who lived in the monastery in our village loved her, she was their pin-up! anyway the result of not having a car meant that she had to rely on our local butcher who only sold pork, weird eh? I dont’ think I tasted beef or lamb until I was about 7/8 when she then got an ancient grey mini van that we all rattled around on the metal floor in the back. I remember it being very hot to sit in the summer as the metal floor heated up and in winter your bum froze to the floor on the way to school.

    The Iris is most impressive – it’s almost 3-D it jumps out at you like a clown producing a bunch of flowers from his sleeve or pocket – the colours are so vibrant. I guess this is the closest we are going to get to daffodils over Easter!

    I’m very fond of your bark shots and I think they work well but then I like abstract stuff and I love texture in pictures – the bark shots capture my imagination.

    The Empress is going to put the kettle on for her first cup of coffee of the day – wanted to write this first thing so that I didn’t forget 😀

    • Good morning Empress. I am going off with my camera for a few hours today 🙂

      It is strange how things stick in your memory. Our first car was a Morris 1000 (what else) and then we had a green Wolesely 1500 – 504 ATX followed by a small Singer Chamois, GCJ 469D. After that I don’t remember. I think the Chamois cost 600 quid and my father thought it was incredibly expensive.

      I love the image of your mother as the monks’ pin-up. Very evocative. Must dash – the ferry to the island goes soon and Mrs. Ha will drop me off. Toodle pip.

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