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Thursday, 3 April 2014

The years of living dangerously

There are lots of photographs to be found online of  workers in dangerous positions, particularly in the construction industry in the days before health and safety precautions were given any consideration, for example that iconic shot of the men working on the Rockefeller Center in 1932, which may have been staged but was still a real photograph, or one of painters on the Sydney Harbour Bridge working without safety harnesses in 1949, but as I haven't come across anyone in my own family albums looking precarious while peering down from great heights, I thought I would just offer a few photographs from the point of view of living dangerously, which can be the case even when you aren't aware that you are doing so.

This photograph shows my grandmother Mona Morrison seated on a horse in 1957 near Blenheim NZ. Both Mona and the horse look reasonably calm and happy, but appearances can be deceptive and Mona then aged 60 was no horse rider. In fact I think this may well have been both her first and last time, because the caption below the photograph reads: "Just before the horse bucked!". As a result poor Mona fell and landed painfully, suffering a back injury that would unfortunately plague her for the rest of her life. Horse riding is definitely an inherently dangerous activity, even for those who are experienced, and no doubt Mona regretted ever having agreed to try it!

My mother's family albums include numerous snaps of us children living dangerously in Canberra in the 1950s and 60s, by playing on the kind of metallic swings, slippery dips, see saws and other standard playground equipment located on hard ground, which these days are just not deemed safe for modern kids.  Here are some examples:

Hang onto your hat, little brother!
That's right, hang on!
And make sure you get out at the same time, or that see-saw will topple over on the one left behind
My sister aged about 2 or 3, no doubt itching to get onto that climbing  frame seen in the background

The local playground to which  we were allowed to head off and play unsupervised

If you fell off and hurt yourself, you just made your own way home

Somehow we survived childhood with no broken bones and only the odd bruise or scrape!

That's it from me for a few weeks, as we are shortly off to England to make the acquaintance of our new granddaughter, but time permitting I might try to prepare a blog on the upcoming gardening prompt before I go and then post it later, as I have a few good photographs to share on that subject.

Now, take a wild ride over to Sepia Saturday 222 . Best to strap on your safety harness and helmet first though, in case there's no soft landing awaiting you!