People I love

Friday, 17 February 2012

Lady Ophelia and the Male voice choir

Week 7 0f Darcy's Postcard Challenge finds us in WALES.

Now Wales has many "items of interest", but I decided to use a major news item of the time for my story.
Get this!

In February 1895 the United Kingdom was in the grip of a vicious winter. After an unseasonably mild December(1894), the end of January into February was cold to the extreme(sounding familiar??). The cold spell that hit in February was cruel and deadly, with temperatures dropping to -20 and below. The river Thames was inaccessible as the estuary froze, and people could walk from one side to the other.
Further north, the ice was accompanied by heavy snowfalls. The canals, the main transport for industry, froze solid and people where put out of work. Pneumonia and chronic chest complaints ravaged the populous. The freezing conditions didn't relent until the last week of February, and this is the backdrop to my story today....

"Dear Miss Lillian,
I hope this reaches you, and that you are safe and well. I can't believe I am so close to home yet unable to visit. We were supposed to dock in London and take the night train north, but the Thames was frozen solid, and the Captain took us around the southern route to WALES! Apparently this was the safest place to come ashore. I tried to get passage across the Pennines, but to no avail. I hear Yorkshire is one of the regions most affected by this horrendous weather.
It isn't quite so bad here in Wales. We went for a stroll along the new pier at Penarth. Not as grand as Brighton, but pretty all the same.
Last night Richard was quite short with me and called me an "ill-mannered snob"! I hadn't meant any offence, still not sure what I did. We had been listening to a magnificent concert given by the men of the local mining community. I only commented that I didn't understand why men with voices like angels would want to grub around in the dirt all day!
Yours affectionately
Effie XXX"
" EFFIE!
PLEASE tell me you did not say that to the choir themselves??! These men do not WANT to work in such a dangerous environment as a coal mine, but there is little other work to be had. I for one would be most grateful for a delivery of coal right now. I am fortunate to be living on your families estate, and that there is a plentiful supply of wood to burn. The people in the towns and cities are far less fortunate. Since this "Great Frost" began it has become impossible for the railways to deliver coal to fuel the factories, and the canals from Manchester are frozen solid. So many are out of work, starving and cold. So cold that they are dying in their beds for lack of coal to warm them.
I am not the least bit surprised Sir Richard was offended by your flippant remark. He is a wise and honourable man, and you should watch his demeanour when dealing with those less fortunate than yourself, young miss! He was right, you do still have much to learn.

Your disappointed, but ever-loving Governess
Miss Lillian

P.S. Nor am I enamoured with your constant habit of shortening two words into one by the use of the apostrophe"

Pictures on my page, Penarth pier and the river Thames full of ice in 1895(you can see Tower Bridge in the distance)
The flower is of course the Daffodil :D XXX
Photobucket

35 comments:

  1. Fab card and great story.Interesting history about the cold snap of 1895, it must have been very difficult without todays modern heating systems. A xx

    ReplyDelete
  2. Always so much to learn! Our canal was frozen the other week too - mind you I didn't fancy testing it with my bodyweight - throwing a stick or stone or two was sufficient!! My friend dressed up as a daffodil this week.... in support of the Welsh rugby team! I look forward to your cards every week - such fun. Miss Lillian must despair...

    ReplyDelete
  3. wonderful flower. loved the weather history and your story

    ReplyDelete
  4. Love your choice of images, the daff is gorgeous! Great story, very cool Mx

    ReplyDelete
  5. Wonderful instalment of your story! And your choice of images is perfect. Can't wait for next week.
    Hugs xx

    ReplyDelete
  6. Great flower-love the historical information

    ReplyDelete
  7. Just right, as always! ♥
    Is shortening words seen as an American habit perhaps? Why is it wrong?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Using slang terms or shortened words was seen as the behaviour of the lower classes, so one would not say wouldn't would one :D

      Delete
  8. aw the daffodil I carried in my wedding flowers <3
    Anyways frozen River now that's cold

    does this mean I'm a "lower class"? lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. unless you actually have a crown and live in a castle I think we all are nowadays lol

      Delete
  9. Fabulous card, your drawings are always superb. Is Miss Lillian incorrect using the words "your families estate" when I was taught to write "your family's estate". Have I caught her out? Ha ha.
    Brilliant work as always.

    Janet xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. haha...hadn't spotted that lol :D

      Delete
    2. though I could have said that she lived on an estate jointly owned by Sir Richard's and Effie's families :D

      Delete
  10. a great postcard, very good history information, we are learning much lot from this challenge.. a good story line.....

    ReplyDelete
  11. loving the backstory..that poor girl she is always in trouble lol

    ReplyDelete
  12. Well spotted Janet. I do love the historic details in your story, it is so interesting. i think by the time the story ends, hopefully Miss Ophelai will be a wiser lady. Caz

    ReplyDelete
  13. well, I am "hooked" on your story!!!!
    I also chose daffodils which are covering my front yard right now!!!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Tut tut Effie. I do love your story. Think I might be nervous of writing to Miss Lillian, spelling never my strong point through the grammar not too bad. lol! Lovely daffodil drawing and page.
    Jen x

    ReplyDelete
  15. Aloha Gina...love Miss Lillian for keeping everyone in line...I have a lot to learn from her wisdom...another FABulous Carte Postale...
    That 'icy' frost stuff is toooo much for me too! burrrrr!

    ReplyDelete
  16. So lovely! And I love how you tied in the history. So fun!!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Such a pretty flower! Love all the background history, very interesting.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I am loving the history lesson I receive each week with your story. The daffodil is beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  19. How incredible that history is repeating itself. How wise of you to have made that connection. Amazing! YOu story is a joy to follow and I LOVE the daffodil. Enjoy your weekend! K

    ReplyDelete
  20. So intriguing, love the history lesson too.
    hugs {brenda} xox

    ReplyDelete
  21. Beautiful card. Really good daffodil. Your story is so fascinating, I love the history and Miss Lillian is absolutely splendid.

    ReplyDelete
  22. what a beautiful daffodil! so pretty and it looks really perfect.

    thank you for the comment on my post x

    ReplyDelete
  23. Wonderful back story to your fabulous postcard story.Beautiful daffodil too! I am still chuckling at Miss Lillian dispproving of contractions. I must be a snob because I prefer "do not" over "don't"! (And I'm Amercan! haha)

    ReplyDelete
  24. love your daffodil on the postcard...and ahhh there I found another peace of your worldcard with the nice red marine-ways ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  25. I am so ashamed of my card now! your daffodil is amazing great story x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Debbi...stop knocking yourself down girl, there are plenty of lowlifes around to do that for you! Your work is wonderful...enjoy it!!!" :D

      Delete
  26. Wow, fabulous daffodil and I'm chuckling over Miss Lillian's slap on the wrist to Effie both on her unfortunate comments and the use of the dread apostrophe. (do not tell me if I have made any mistakes, my excuse is old age and fading memory !)

    ReplyDelete
  27. Wow... How funny and of course a beautiful daff!

    ReplyDelete