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Thursday, 31 July 2014

A pair of Dutch postcards





I generally try to keep my posts to matters that relate to family or family history, and as a result I didn't feel I had anything to contribute this week, but then I remembered these two sweet little postcards that my mother sent me from the Netherlands in 1954, when she and my father had a week there and in Paris, having left yours truly aged 18 months in the care of kind family friends back in Cambridge. Mum then retrieved and saved these cards in a scrapbook documenting our year on England, so at least the the origin of the cards is family history related.


In the first card the children are clearly up to mischief, trying to feed their pet dog some motor oil. The Dutch caption reads
                                                                    "Ergen dan zijn eigen pijn 
                                                                     Vindt Fik deze medicijn"

  I think this translates roughly to something like 'Fik will find this drug worse than his own pain'. Any suggestions on a better translation are welcome! 


I've included the second card of this matching pair for its caption, which says:

 "Wassen, plassen, boenen maar,
 we zijn zo in een wipje klaar"

In English this seems to be 'Wash, splash, scrub, but we are so in a seesaw'.  Again, a better translation or explanation of this would be much appreciated. Does it mean they can't get off the 'seesaw' of washing, splashing and scrubbing , or would they rather be enjoying a real seesaw? I'm not sure, but no doubt my mother thought I would like the cute little characters, as I'm sure I did. Anyway, it looks like I was having fun with my little friend David Norman and his parents while Mum and Dad were away, and hopefully I didn't play any tricks on this little fellow. I seem to be holding a can of what used to be Bird's Custard Powder, presumably empty, and definitely not containing motor oil!  I wonder what became of David.

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To see more postcards, mischief makers and whatever else might take the fancy of other Sepians for Sepia Saturday #239,  just click here

17 comments:

  1. Those are pretty little cards, but I bet the animal rights activists today would be in an uproar over a picture of a dog being fed motor oil. Mischief, indeed!

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  2. Cute cards, strange captions.

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  3. The postcards are just beautiful. We have to be grateful for our mothers for the way they saved these nostalgic bits and pieces.

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  4. I think plassen means pounding, but other than that your translations are as good as anything I could come up with & I have several translation aids since I correspond with a Dutch familie! You were certainly a cute tyke. Love your sun bonnet.

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  5. I expect David is causing mischief of his own somewhere. A charming photo Jo.

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  6. A perfect choice of postcards and photo. I think the early postcard publishers discovered that cute children always sell more postcards. Still true today too.

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  7. Those are adorable postcards.

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  8. I wonder if that second card means that as they wash and so on, they make more mess and it becomes a bit of a merry go round of ceaseless washing/play. Lovely cards and bang on theme.

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  9. You had such a beautiful sun bonnet. Very cute cards.

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  10. The photo of you is definitely a 'butter wouldn't melt in her mouth' photo

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    1. Yes, I do hope I was a well-behaved little house guest for that week with the Norman family.

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  11. They are lovely postcards - fine examples of a style that I remember from my own childhood.

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  12. The cards are very cute!

    When we were in Germany visiting my husbands family, they would be joking but when I asked for a translation, I didn't find it funny. I think the joke got lost in translation!

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    1. yes, and I think different nationalities/cultures can have different senses of humour too.

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  13. Very sweet and naughty children, cards that might well have been meant just as your Mom used them, to give children a laugh and tell them they were being remembered while relatives were away. As a Mom, I always missed my kids (or pets even) whenever I had to be away from them.

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  14. Love the cards and can easily imagine an illustration of similar nature being made from your adorable photo.

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    1. Hmm, I wonder what the caption would be?

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