Tuesdays of Texture : Week 12

St. Declans Well, Lismore

Ruins of an old church

This old building, St. Declan’s Well in Ardmore, Co Waterford, is still standing after a few hundred years, and you can see from all the old stonework that it is a very interesting wall, full of texture.   The doorway seems to be quite small, maybe earlier generations were shorter than this one!

Linked to Narami’s Tuesdays of Texture

Weekly Photo Challenge : Tiny

For this week’s Photo Challenge, let’s go back to the Model Railway Village in Clonakilty, West Cork.   We had such an enjoyable day there in the summer, not only did we see and get a ride around the town on the old train, but we also got to see the models of the surrounding towns, showing life in the 1940s and 1950s  in Ireland.

Model Village, Clonakilty

Market day long ago

Above is a scene from an old market day, with produce, cattle, sheep and pigs on display to the highest bidder.


Model Railway Village

The model railway station shows commuters waiting for the train, as a goods train passes carrying new cars.

Midel Railway Village

My ‘giant’ grandchildren!

Looking down on the tiny houses!

Model Railway Village

Linked to WPC : Tiny

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge : Metal and Wood

Window on the world

Window on the world

We came across this quaint traditonal old farmhouse near Kenmare, Co Kerry, that has been renovated to the style of the 50s,  and we enjoyed a cuppa and pastry in this room.   On the window along with the teapot and candlestick is what looks like an old meat safe, which would have been used for storage of perishables, and placed in the coldest part of the house.   I think the picture fits perfectly with Cee’s challenge for this week.

See some more entries here:

Photo 101 : Day 17- Glass

Old telephone box

Old telephone box

The old telephone box, pictured above, is something that is not seen or used very much anymore, with practically everyone now having their own mobile phone, which makes communication so much easier. I can remember spending lots of time in telephone boxes when growing up, or queuing outside one while the person in the box holds a long conversation with their friend/lover/parent or whatever.   Even worse was the frustration of finding the right change, walking to the nearest phone box, only to find that it was out of order or worse still, that the handpiece was missing or broken….Oh the joys of the olden days!!!

I took this photo last night, but I didn’t check inside the booth, so I am not sure if it is still a working telephone, or just there as a reminder of things past.

Meeting Places 2 : The Threshing

I had already submitted a post in this theme, but reading the entry of a fellow blogger, Le Drake Noir, I was reminded of a great social event, and meeting place from over 50 years ago, growing up in rural Ireland.

This was the day when the threshing machine came to our farm to ‘thrash’ the corn , wheat and  barley,  to separate the precious grain from the rest of the crop.   Not all farmers had a threshing machine, as they were large expensive pieces of equipment, so the one machine would be hired out among all the farmers in the area, and all the neighbours would turn  up to help  on the day, knowing that everyone would return the favour when it was their turn to have the precious machine.

All the neighbouring children would come along to this big important day as well, and we had a ball,  the highlight of our day was playing in the chaff,  (the husks of the grain)  ducking and diving and making sure to keep out of the way of the pitchforks as the men worked hard and stacked the straw before it was put in the barn over the cowshed, and used during the winter as bedding for the cows.

All the women from the neighbourhood turned up as well, spending the day in the kitchen, baking bread and cooking up big meals for all the workers – probably a huge pot of spuds (potatoes) and bacon and cabbage – one of the most traditional of Irish meals.

The work would go on late into the evening until all the grain was safely bagged, and as a reward the  farmer would supply a barrel of porter to quench the workers’ thirst, and often someone would produce a musical instrument like a squeeze box, and  there would be singing and dancing to round off  the night, and finish off the dregs of the barrell!

Old threshing machine


Linked to Ailsa’s Travel Theme

An Irish Dresser, and Other Pictures from My Kitchen.

One of the pictures in my kitchen is a big framed poster called ‘An Irish Dresser’ and it’s a picture taken in an old Irish kitchen, of the dresser, or sideboard, which held everything from a needle to an anchor!   This picture is typical of rural Irish life in the 50s, or early 60s, and everything in it has some significance.

At this time, cooking was done on an open fire, on a range or on a paraffin cooker; in any case, the work was very hard, with the cleaning and lighting of the fire often taking place before first light, and with no labour saving devices anywhere, or even thought of.  Water was heated in the same way, over the open fire.  There was no television, and those who had radios powered them by means of batteries.  Light came from oil lamps and candles. and water was drawn from a well, or a pump, and in our house that job fell to me when I was old enough to carry a bucket without spilling half the contents on the way to the house!

This is an overall view of the dresser:

An Irish Dresser (Sideboard)

An Irish Dresser (Sideboard)

It is made of a dark wood, nicely carved, there are 4 open shelves, with 3 drawers underneath, and then some closed shelves at the bottom, and you will see from the open door, that this is where pots and pans were kept.   The bottom open shelf holds a weighing scales with brass weights, a jug of kitchen utensils, fresh bread and fresh eggs (probably newly laid) an almost burnt out candle, a few bottles of beer, a radio, an  iron, a teapot and a tray, and an oil lamp.

The other shelves hold such an assortment of household bits and pieces- knitting, the alarm clock, pictures, more teapots, postcards from America (that was where most Irish people emigrated to, some of them never to see home again), a bottle of cherry brandy brought back from Spain, photographs, the ‘good’ china teaset which was only brought out for special visitors, such as the local priest,  a big bunch of keys, rosary beads, holy pictures, a picture of the Pope, a St. Bridgids Cross, which is made of rushes, and is said to protect a house from fire…. this was a very Catholic country, and religion meant everything to the Irish people 50 years ago.

So much stuff – the kind of things one might find in an antique shop today.

Some of the detail on the shelves

Some of the detail on the shelves

The little red hen wanders in looking for crumbs.

The little red hen wanders in looking for crumbs.

I also have in my kitchen some framed photos of a spice market in Uganda, showing bags of chillies and spices in one photo, and limes, lemons and passion fruit in another photo, such colour and variety, and one can only imagine the different aromas everywhere in the market.

I wonder, in 50 year’s time, will my grand-children write about my kitchen as I have done right now?

Linked to Begorrathon 2015

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