Step back in time…

I want to start this post by thanking Sandra, a real world friend and email correspondent for sending me these incredible, historical artifacts. Thank you!

Now, take my hand and let’s start with something all Australians will recognize – the Sydney Harbour Bridge:

Building the Sydney Harbour Bridge

Historians will love this old black and white news footage, but baby techies like me will be astounded to learn exactly how such a huge, single span was built. I literally could not believe my eyes. [If you don’t want to watch the entire eight minute video, click the red ‘play’ line at about 75%].

The next few images prove that history is cyclical. Or perhaps they just prove that humans never change:

Noses exposed? Really?
Now that’s what I call serious protection!
Everything closed until further notice…
See the modern tech?
Old school social media…
The bullet Australia has missed…so far.

I decided to include the following, more recent image because I wish we had something like it today:

Circa the 1950s?

Imagine if, instead of having to order online and get someone else to pick your produce for you, mobile shops would drive through the suburbs, ringing a bell or something, like the old Mr Whippy icecream vans.

Remember them?

For those who don’t know who or what Mr Whippy was, you can see pics and read all about it on Woorillacaught’s blog: https://www.woorillacaught.com/mr-whippy/

We’d still have to wear masks and gloves, and keep 2 metres apart, but wouldn’t it be nice to be able to pick your own fruit and veg? Maybe have the baker’s van bring fresh, crusty Vienna’s to the corner of your street. And ice cream! I do miss the Mr Whippy van. ๐Ÿ™‚

The past was anything but a golden age and yet, there are things from my childhood that I really do miss. What about you?

cheers
Meeks

About acflory

I am the kind of person who always has to know why things are the way they are so my interests range from genetics and biology to politics and what makes people tick. For fun I play online mmorpgs, read, listen to a music, dance when I get the chance and landscape my rather large block. Work is writing. When a story I am working on is going well I'm on cloud nine. On bad days I go out and dig big holes... View all posts by acflory

36 responses to “Step back in time…

  • Sue

    The mask wearing for I’m guessing, the 1918 pandemic is interesting. I haven’t seen anything about that.
    The fact that it particularly struck the young in that case. Odd how these viruses select a certain section of community.
    And the relics of the civillian war? I had half a parachute made of silk, that was kept for underwear and dresses and some black out curtains that were used for my childhood fancy dress. And to my surprise the other day when ironing realised a linen pillowslip had the utility mark in it. Still good to use.
    But despite going round the twist at the moment with the life limits I remember seeing a posting ‘We have been called to our sofas – we can do this’…… which compared to the war where you could be without a house and 1918 crisis we really have got it easy passing the time.
    Loved seeing the photos and remembering life a lot easier and slower.

    Liked by 1 person

    • acflory

      Hi Sue and welcome! I’m a 50’s baby so much of this was new to me. The only thing I remember reading about the war years, WWII, was that silk stockings were like gold – needed for parachutes perhaps? And that ladies would draw a dark link down the back of their legs to mimic the ‘seam’ in silk stockings. No idea how the coped with the cold!
      And to your point about privation? Yes, ordinary people have had it much worse in the past. I think we’ve forgotten how to be resilient. And how to make do.
      The one good thing out of this pandemic is that many people are relearning old skills – like cooking and baking.
      I’ve always thought they were ‘survival skills’ so this pleases me a lot. ๐Ÿ˜€

      Like

  • daleleelife101.blog

    I hope our new normal adopts some of aspects of historical normal that although it became outdated did so at the hand of commercial interests. I love buying local veges, meat, honey direct from the grower, small independent stores. I have fond childhood memories of the baker delivering bread with a beautiful horse and cart. We could get our milk delivered but rarely did as my grandparents had a dairy farm. And yes, I was a big fan of Mr Whippy. I believe many are beginning to see with fresh eyes the value of scaling back from more, cheaper, bigger to enough and better.

    Liked by 1 person

    • acflory

      Yes! When I was a kid, my Mum would go to the greengrocer for fruit & veg. Lovely little Italian man would pick out beautiful ripe fruit and veg – actually just perfect, not something that was hard as a rock and about as tasty – and he’s put it in paper bags.
      Paper somehow stopped things from getting manky.
      And this ‘scaling back from more, cheaper, bigger to enough and better.’
      I hope that one of the things everyone learns from this pandemic is how good fresh bread tastes, real bread not plastic bread shaped slices from brick shaped plastic bags.
      -fingers crossed-

      Like

  • Pondering Time Zones | Myths of the Mirror

    […] (acflory) from Meeka’s Mind and I were emailing about time zones relative to my launch. Our discussion made me think of this old […]

    Like

  • anne54

    The Bridge video was fascinating. It was such strong symbol of progress.
    However, in that video my thoughts were turning to health and safety. The conditions looked appalling, and I wonder how many workers were killed and injured.
    On a lighter note, have you seen Grace Cossington Smith’s powerful painting of the construction of the Bridge?
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Bridge_in_Curve

    Liked by 1 person

    • acflory

      Yes, I know! No hard hats or any of the gear we take for granted now. Life was cheaper back then. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

      I hadn’t seen that painting. What a shame it wasn’t considered ‘good enough’ for exhibition. I wonder if this is why female artists are so under represented in the history of art?

      Like

  • tidalscribe

    Ferries things of the past – luckily ferries survived

    Liked by 1 person

  • Bette A. Stevens

    Wonderful video and great photos from another pandemic, Meeks! I do love the 1950s truck and remember mobile deliveries like that when I was a young girl. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • acflory

      I must have been in my teens [?] because I can remember getting up at 5am [summer] to go outside and watch the milk cart go by our house. There was a dairy only a couple of kms away and the milkman delivered fresh milk, in glass bottles, from a cart pulled by a horse! And this was in 1960s suburbia. Thinking of that horse and cart still brings a smile to my face.
      So glad this post brought back some good memories for you too.

      Liked by 1 person

  • HonieBriggs

    Fantastic! I enjoyed the video clip, especially when the narrator suggests the size and weight of the bridge building materials had never before been contemplated in engineering. He forgot to say, “Since construction of the pyramids.” It never ceases to amaze me how we can completely discount historical records of human achievement. Thanks for the reminder.

    Liked by 1 person

    • acflory

      God yes! And in fact, even the technological achievement of the bridge has been conveniently forgotten! Yet it’s less than 100 years old. If history is a form of societal memory then our memories are all short!

      Liked by 1 person

  • Widdershins

    I miss riding my bike (bicycle) all day and not being completely exhausted the next day!

    Liked by 1 person

  • roughwighting

    What goes around comes around… somehow that quote seems appropriate for this post, although it is confusing. Should we have known we’d be doing this quarantining all over again? The experts say yes. Personally, I’m thankful that this time around, I can order on-line, like this morning, when I ordered at 7:30 a.m. and the groceries arrived at 9 a.m. Wowee – better than in the past. However, if an ice cream truck came swinging into the neighborhood, I wouldn’t be the least bit upset. In fact, I’m come screaming out “Ice cream ice cream we all scream for ice cream” – with a mask on, of course.

    Liked by 2 people

    • acflory

      Wow! Our online ordering is ‘next day’ at best. But then I think the US has been getting behind online shopping/ordering for a lot longer than us here in Australia. I do envy that speed of delivery. ๐Ÿ™‚

      -grin- I can just see all of us adults social distancing as we queue in front of the truck for ice cream. And the kids going ‘but Mum/Gran…there’s ice cream in the freezer!’

      Liked by 1 person

      • roughwighting

        ๐Ÿ™‚ And those poor kids who don’t realize that ice cream from the truck is SO much better than the ice cream in the freezer.

        Liked by 1 person

        • acflory

          Yes! It was miles better. I remember. ๐Ÿ™‚

          Liked by 1 person

          • Sue

            We still get the odd ice cream van. I still want to go outside and get one when I hear it. I can remember arguing at home with the ‘can I, can I, can I’ and still don’t really understand why I couldn’t
            Also riding on the milk van, great fun. Knowing I was working the milkman would put the milk under the shrubs to keep it cooler. That’s service! The dairy was in town and big bowls of yellow clotted cream in the window………there is nothing like the real thing. The stuff in supermarkets is dire. Fortunately I can still buy farm cream.
            And deliveries? There’s a small group of houses in a village near me but no shops so a veg van goes round twice a week, the fish van and the mobile library. I so wanted to live there.

            Liked by 1 person

          • acflory

            Where I live is on the very fringe of Melbourne – almost country but not quite – and a great big mobile library comes around once a week for people on my street. I prefer my Kindle but my neighbour loves paper books and makes good use of the mobile library.
            I guess the 21st century very of the mobile shop may end up being a drone that delivers to the door. I think I’d prefer the van!

            Like

  • ChrisJamesAuthor

    Wow, loved that video of the bridge. Back in the day when Brits used to be able to build things.
    I do miss the days when freaks and nutters were restricted to their own social circle instead of being able to blurt their trash out to the whole world *sigh*

    Liked by 1 person

    • acflory

      Seeing really was believing for me. If you’d told me that’s how these massive bridges are built, I would have said you were pulling my leg! And yes, there is a yin for every yang…or something like that. lol

      Liked by 1 person

  • CarolCooks2

    Interesting photos my mother told us about the gas masks which luckily they didn’t have to use…Ahhh Mr. Whippy and creamola foam I loved both ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

    Liked by 1 person

  • Neil Rickert

    Those masks in the second image (women pushing a pram) were (I think) gas masks used in WWII, in case there was a poisonous gas attack.

    I remember seeing them, growing up in Perth. I’m glad we never actually needed them. By the time I saw them, they might have been war surplus after the war had ended.

    Liked by 2 people

    • acflory

      I did wonder about those masks! I had a vague memory of seeing a picture of a soldier with something similar but wasn’t sure of the vintage. Thank so much for the info. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Like

  • robbiesinspiration

    These are such interesting photographs, Meeks. I recognised those gas masks. My mom had one as did all her family. Luckily, the civilian population didn’t have to use them.

    Liked by 2 people

    • acflory

      Hi Robbie. So they were WWII leftovers. Neil said the same thing. We actually have masks used by firefighters. My sprinkler system was designed by a very knowledgeable guy who helped save his own house and that of a neighbour during the Black Saturday fires. He sourced them for us. Eerily, they don’t look all that dissimilar except that the filter is on the side rather than in front.

      Liked by 1 person

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