Pictorial blethers

By blethers

For Fathers' Day

It's always a slight problem, the punctuation of these days - are we thinking all fathers, as I have chosen to do today, or simply one? It's simpler, in a way, to be able to substitute Mothering Sunday, but there isn't any suggestion that Fathering Sunday might be anything other than an odd way of putting it ...

My father would have scoffed either way. Yes, he was a stickler for the well-placed apostrophe, but he'd have had no truck with the idea of celebrating today as anything other than his birthday, which was actually yesterday - 20 June, 1908. But I think he might have been quite tickled to see this photo of himself in Syria during the war, not in his signals truck (see what I did there?) but with a Jeep. No idea of how he acquired it - he was in the RAF, and spent much of the desert war in a truck or in a tiny bivvy over a scrape in the sand. All he told me about this photo was how cold it was.

My Dad would have been about 34 when this photo was taken, taken with his own Leica 2, which we still have. He didn't get home at all until Christmas 1944-45, and in this period of waiting for the time to pass until we can get out and meet one another properly and get on with our lives, I often think of my mother waiting at home, wondering how long it would be before she saw her husband again, wondering if she would see him again, wondering if it'd be too late, if she'd be too old to have a family...

Clearly, she did, and it wasn't.

Extra photo of the shore in the West Bay this afternoon, just because I liked the pebbly beach with the distant gulls and assorted sea birds round the mouth of the burn.

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