16 October 2015

Baby

Our Frances is twenty seven now but I just have to close my eyes and I can remember her as a baby, as a toddler, as a little schoolgirl and as a university student. The time flies by like images you see from an express train, thundering through the countryside. The baby girl is now an independent woman making her own way in the world. I blinked and almost missed the transformation.

Working in London now, her office are organising something called  a "baby shower" for a pregnant colleague. Part of this involves a display of baby pictures. She asked me to scan two or three for her and by the magic of the internet spirit them down to her desk in Victoria House, Holborn in the dark heart of our nation's capital city.

The photos were taken between 1988 and 1990 in a world where the internet was still just a boffin's dream. Nobody had smart phones or digital cameras. If you took photos they were on film and after you had clicked your thirty six pictures, you sent off the celluloid roll to "Bonus Print" or "Max Spielmann" for processing. Now all of  that seems like ancient history. The idea of cavemen making arrowheads springs to mind.
Baby Frances on Shirley's shoulder
At two in France, wearing her Snoopy sunglasses
Later that same year with the old  mischief in her eyes.
Blessed we are to have such a lovely daughter. In fact we are double-blessed to also have an equally lovely son. To be young these days is not easy. Work and the cost of living. Rent and bills. The pressure of targets and Facebook and trolls and customer satisfaction surveys. What to eat and what not to eat. Staying fit. Having fun. Jager bombs and e-mail scammers, Islamic extremists and child molesters. Where oh where is normality? Though it seems like yesterday when I snapped those photos, in many ways the world has become a different place.

32 comments:

  1. A touching post, Neil.
    As for normality, I'm afraid all that you have listed IS normality now...
    And I wonder where your daughter gets the mischief from!

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    1. Mmm.. the mischief? I wonder.

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  2. U big softie
    Love phot no 2

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    1. Softie? I'm as hard as nails man!

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  3. Great pictures! I'm not so sure normality was all that wonderful back in the day, either, with Vietnam and Baader-Meinhof and John Wayne Gacy. I suspect the world is basically the same as it always was -- just more crowded and, hence, more expensive and chaotic.

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    1. (Admittedly, I'm going back an extra 10 or 20 years with those specific events!)

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    2. John Wayne Gacy? I had forgotten about him but then America has spawned so many mass murderers one loses track of them! I hope you are not a mass murdering US "plant" Steve, just biding your time before creating mayhem on The Tube!

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    3. LOL -- hey now, you guys had Jack the Ripper, the ORIGINAL mass murderer! I promise I am not a plant. Unless my mind has been co-opted to such a degree that even I don't know it.

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    4. All I can say is that I am glad I live with the other barbarians in "UpNorth" Steve!

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  4. Internet was alive and well in 1990. Thatcher was still alive but had cleared off. The IRA were still going at it bombing this, that and the other and you were sitting in France with not a care in the world.

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    1. The internet was "around" in 1990 but there were very few domestic users. Mostly they were in universities. When did you acquire your first computer with intenet access?

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    2. I am trying to remember. I can recall having to go to Glasgow Nautical College to get e-mails. Quite a novelty that was. Then I got a simple e-mail thing that worked from my phone. I will try and sort out a timeline on the matter.

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    3. As near as I can tell mid 90s. 97 we had satellite email on most boats. It worked through Goonhilly. Portishead had gone from dozens of radio operators to a handful.

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    4. I got our first "Tiny" home computer in 1996. Internet access was slow and it was especially frustrating when photographs were coming down the phone line. No friends, family or neighbours had home computers at that time.

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  5. As Snow White said when she sent her Kodak film off to be developed, "Some day my prints will come."

    Growing older teaches you that time flies even if you're not having fun.

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    1. Some day my prints will come! Ha! Ha!....Your sense of humour often tickles me old timer!

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    2. Hilarious RWP :)

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  6. So true YP and you wonder how they will ever be able to bring up children of their own in today's world with its global warming and Islamic terrorism. Life was so much simpler for us. That's if they have children of course, mine aren't making much progress in that department !!

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    1. Perhaps they need to see a demonstration!

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  7. No doubt she's still "daddy's little girl"! I am, even though I'm 40 years old and that will never change.

    Every girl deserves a great dad growing up, and I'm sure Frances adores you!

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    1. The feeling is mutual Jennifer as I am sure it is with The Jennifer Daddy.

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  8. Indeed, every girl needs a dad or a fatherly figure in her daily life. My theory was that if that special man gave that wonderful girl a hug and kiss every day and listened to all she wanted to tell him, then it would be a long time before that girl would feel the need for hugs and kisses from any other man.

    Lovely pictures. That must have been a good camera also, Mr. Pudding.

    I think the world has definitely changed drastically, especially for young people. But, I don't think that the love and caring and worry of most parents for and about their children will ever change. Neither of my children want children of their own. Looking around the U.S. and indeed the world, I can't say that I much blame them.

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    1. But you would make an excellent grandma MT! And Big Bear could have had the little ones riding on his back - across the kitchen floor. It is sad when the bloodline hits a wall. It might happen with us too.

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  9. A wonderful post, Yorkie.

    The years, like the seeds of a dandelion flower, are carried off with the wind, and as quickly and as difficult to catch.

    Far too soon our children are adults, for parents it must seem like a blink of an eye. It makes me so angry when I hear about those who don't realise how special their children are and don't cherish what they have.

    Both you and Shirley are lucky to have two beautiful children...and they're always "children" to you...and they are very lucky to have you both as their parents.

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    1. Thank you for reading this post Lee and for responding with such humanity.

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  10. My kids are 44 and 46 . It's hard to believe that they both wear bifocals or that they were infants.

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    1. At times what happened years ago can seem like chapters from somebody else's life. Do you feel that too Red?

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  11. What a wonderful photo - the large, bright pink sunglasses with Snoopy in one of his favourite poses.
    Children whose parents have provided a loving secure, family environment have the best chance of coping with life’s problems when they leave the nest. So, you and Matron Shirley should not be too concerned about how Ian And Frances will manage, their life-managing foundations will have been well laid.


    Ms Soup

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    1. Thanks for that reassurance Alphie. By the way, I still can't see any more activity on your blog! Don't be so slothful young lady! Let me know when you post again.

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  12. She is certainly your girl YP. Great pics!

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  13. By 1998 my children were almost leaving school: the child photos long past. Lee made the point that they are always children to us. I realised that my relationship with my younger son had changed (our older son died before that happened) when I was hill climbing with him and he, having just done a winter climb on Mont Blanc, was the one who was making sure that I was ok.

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