Friday, July 28, 2017

Like A Bridge Over Troubled Waters (Sepia Saturday 378)


I am taking a short break from my "Standing Around" series in order to bring you someone who is "sitting around", and - more importantly - sitting in a rowing boat under a bridge. The bridge is important because it is my slightly laboured link to this week's Sepia Saturday theme image, which shows a picture of Taft Bridge in Washington DC. It must be admitted that Taft Bridge is a far grander structure than the bridge over Stanley Park Boating Lake in Blackpool, but a bridge is a bridge wherever it may be. My bridge forms part of a photograph taken by my Uncle Frank, and, because it is a Frank "The Cataloguer" Fieldhouse photo, I can tell you it was taken in Stanley Park, Blackpool in 1940. The importance of the date is clearly indicated by the next photograph in the album: Uncle Frank had swung the camera so that the lens was pointing to the sky and way up above you can just make out a warplane on patrol. He captioned that particular shot "Just A Reminder", and the two photographs together should, if nothing else, remind us of the importance of bridges.


Bridges join people and places together and allow relaxed passage for all. I always used to think that one of the great achievements of my postwar generation was that we had successfully constructed bridges following the madness of twentieth century wars. But as I watch some of those bridges being demolished and insularity coming to the forefront, I find myself questioning the value of this legacy.




16 comments:

  1. I give high praise to those who labelled photographs and/or album pages. (My mom's family -- mainly her older sister Josie, I believe -- was very good at that during the 1920s-1940s.) It's so much easier to keep track of people and places for those of us who still care about such things.

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  2. I'm struggling to see any war plane there but I agree with you about the destruction of metaphorical bridges.

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  3. I have a lovely memory of being in a rowing boat with my father. It was a hot day and we went on a day trip to a local lake. Lots of grass and trees around the lake and lots of Germans enjoying the lakeside. I must have been six. Sadly no photographs commemorate this wonderful day out.

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  4. I am so glad someone labelled some early photos, and I know I often just chucked them into a box, not having time from my busy life to do labels. But at least there were photos taken of good times. Me too, Jo, can't see the war plane. I sure found lots of specks on my screen though!

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  5. Blogging is bridge building exercise of a kind, Alan. Something you are extremely adept at.

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    1. Such words from you Martin are indeed a compliment.

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  6. There is a bridge built like yours and the one in the prompt that I crossed often when I was living in Detroit to get to the park on Belle Isle. Unfortunately there is not 1 photo of that happening nor of my parents and their families crossing the bridge. A sad lack in my otherwise very complete family record in photos.

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  7. It looks like a lovely Sunday afternoon of boating and drinking lemonade yet war loomed. Was the bridge destroyed during the war?

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  8. As a Blackpudlian, for me you rekindled many of my memories of Stanley Park. I remember being out on a boat with my parents and once you were under the bridge and away from people on the Lakeside paths, it was so peaceful and you seemed miles away from the hustle and bustle of Blackpool.

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  9. I also had an Uncle Frank who took many, many photographs, and labelled them all! A treasure trove of family lore (from before I was born). Unfortunately I have none of them.

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  11. An example of unintentional art by Uncle Frank, with a kind of sepia watercolor effect. The skewed viewpoint adds a modern abstract quality. My eye was drawn to the boy on the bridge. He seems poised for the rowboat's approach no doubt with a handful of pebbles.

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  12. We certainly take bridges for granted sometimes . We certainly miss them if they disapear .I'm thinking especially of Elland Bridge after the Flood.

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  13. And what will become of the chunnel with Brexit? Though I've never been through it, I imagine now the border crossing on each side will be a pain. You're right that people keep knocking down "bridges" these days. Perhaps the US is the worst of them. I know I'm embarrassed by all of it. Well, embarrassed is my second emotion. My first is pure seething anger.

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  14. If only all old photographs were so well labelled. The 'just a reminder’ seems almost unnecessary.

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  15. Blogging is bridge building exercise of a kind, Alan. Something you are extremely adept at.


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