The subject for the Daily Photo Shoot for Saturday, 23 February 2013 is twofold:
1. A Happy Birthday Shout-Out to my best friend, Sandy-from-Iowa.
The two photos above were taken during our last trip to England in 2002 when Sandy came with us for two glorious weeks in the land of our hearts and souls. Top, Sandy is standing in front of a thatched cottage that was moved and reassembled again and put into the Ryedale Folk Museum in Hutton le Hole, North Yorkshire.
The bottom photo was taken by our friend Don Burluraux (who lives in Skelton, N. Yorkshire) of us at the picnic table outside our self-catering cottage in Rosedale Abbey, N. Yorkshire. From left to right, sitting, Sandy, Bex, Paul, and standing is Jean Burluraux, Don’s wife. We were off for a full day of tooting all around North Yorkshire with Don and Jean, and what a day we had.
So Happy Birthday to you, Sandy! You know how much you mean to me…
~ ~ ~ ~
2. A Small Tale of Three Chargers (or is it Four?)
Before we went to England for the first time in 1986 on our honeymoon, I didn’t even know what a “charger” was except that it might be something you plugged a gadget into to recharge its batteries! But I found out the year we were visiting Yorkshire and stopped into a little gift shop in Reeth in the Yorkshire Dales.
Reeth has always been a destination for us on all our trips to the UK. Lovely little village, a kind of meeting place for all sorts of folks. We stayed two nights in a B&B in Reeth on our honeymoon, and I can remember it like it was yesterday. The B&B owner, when we came in and introduced ourselves as “newlyweds,” ran upstairs and was gone for a few minutes and came back down and showed us the only room she had available. It had twin beds and she’d gone up and pushed them together, putting the little bedside table that had been separating them over in the corner, and she hoped that it would be OK for us! She was so sweet and funny! We assured her that twin beds were fine and not to worry!!!
Anyway, we stayed there that night and the following night and got to really get to know Reeth and ended up in a little pottery/gift shop on the edge of the village. The money made from the sale of all the items in this shop went to charitable places, for instance the New Roof Fund for the local church. I found these three “chargers” way at the back of the shop, sitting in a corner, not really displayed or anything, and they were a little darkened and not cleaned up at all.
Aren’t they super? Of course, I cleaned them all up once I got them home.
When we were purchasing them, the lady at the counter asked if we wanted to know who donated them, and we said “Yes, of course!” She told us and even wrote down the lady’s name and address so I could drop her a note once we got home. Her name was Muriel H. and she lived in Wakefield, West Yorkshire. I wanted to take a picture of the chargers once I got them home and put up on the wall so she’d know they went to a good home. And so I did. She was thrilled to hear from us and wrote back a very interesting and newsy type of snail-mail letter. We kept in touch over the years following that, but alas I think she has died and I never heard back from her after a while.
And the rest of this small tale is that shortly after we got home from that trip to England, I was shopping at a “flea market” here in Salem one Sunday and found this:
This charger has to be almost 2 feet across, maybe a little less. I bought it I think for $40 and took it home and cleaned it all up. It’s lived in various spots in the house but now acts as a fireplace “screen” of sorts. I used to have it hanging over the fireplace in the dining room before I put up a large wood-framed mirror there.
Large charger over fireplace
Smaller chargers on stair wall
So you see, they move around. The dining room has made a few major transformations over the years. We wallpapered it early on and loved it but finally got tired of the busy-ness of wallpaper and took it all off and painted it two shades of brown, like so:
…and we had the old oak wood floor in that room sanded and restained and finished…
We had torn apart the old staircase leading upstairs:
…to finally end up with a new paint job, a new/old floor/ and new stairs:
Here was our beautiful girl collie dog, Whitby, overseeing Paul’s stair project:
So that was a long story rather than a short tale, wasn’t it? Sorry! I get carried away with the photos… It is fun to see progress photos when you do major renovations, though.
So that’s the story of the chargers. I love them and will always enjoy remembering the story of where they came from, etc. I miss Reeth, too. It’s been almost 11 years since we were last there in Yorkshire, and except for some miracle happening with my body, I can’t see us getting back there in this lifetime. But we have our memories, and our photos!