Perhaps I had ambitions to be an MP - or an undertaker!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

I suppose I had assumed that my old wooden giraffe had been thrown out many years ago. So I was delighted when Fiona told me that she had it. It would be early in the 1930s when it was given to me, and I was told that it had been made by a little black boy.

That led me to think about other toys I had when I was small, and then I remembered an interesting story I had read in a newspaper some time ago.

After the death of her husband Dewi, Brenda Rowland was going through his possessions and eventually came to his precious garden hut. Over the years he had kept a locked wooden box there and had refused to tell her what it contained.

So rather reluctantly and with some worrying thoughts, she decided to open the box. She was astonished to find it was full of old pre-war toys, obviously things he had played with and loved when he was a boy.
Lined with a 1937 newspaper, the box contained ludo, snakes and ladders, building bricks, skipping ropes, a little farm with animals, zoo animals, lead soldiers, a yo-yo, a wooden alphabet, marbles, a clockwork train.
With no children to pass them on to, he had kept them all those years, and I wonder if perhaps he sometimes opened the box and handled those precious things which had been so important to him as a boy.

This story brought back many memories for me - the games and toys that I had, and of course those that our daughters had. There were Chad Valley toys, Corgi cars, Hornby train sets, Meccano, dolls (but not for me of course), games like tiddley winks, lotto. And one thing you won’t find in shops nowadays - a golliwog!


"Brothers and sisters have I none,
But this man's father is my father's son."
Who is the man in the photo? 

I remember being puzzled by this question when I was a boy, and I was interested to find from the many websites and forums dealing with the problem that people still can’t agree!

Here are a few puzzles that were new to me. I give the answers at the end of the blog.

1) John's mother had four children. The first was April, the second was May, and the third was June. What was the name of the fourth child?

2) What is it that can run but never walks, has a mouth but never talks, has a head but never weeps, and has a bed but never sleeps?

3) What is light as a feather, yet even the strongest man can’t hold it for more than a few minutes?

4)What’s full of holes but still holds water?

5)You’re driving a bus. Seven people get on, four people get off, then eight people get on and five people get off, then six people get on and two more get off. What colour were the bus driver's eyes?


"The Great Dictator" was a Charlie Chaplin film which created quite a stir when it was first shown in 1940. Written, directed and starring Chaplin, it satirised the Nazis and Hitler.

I remember being quite disappointed when I saw it, because the Charlie Chaplin on the screen wasn't the one I had come to see.

This clip from the film is certainly different!


My new blog A TOUCH OF CULTURE will be updated tomorrow 8th October when I'll be having quick look at some ballet.


Answers to the puzzles - 1) John. 2) a river. 3) his breath. 4) a sponge. 5) the colour of your eyes, you were driving the bus.

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