Friday, December 31, 2010


It's almost 2011. I'm already hearing shotguns being fired -- an old German custom here. I can remember my grandfather doing it, but I never quite understood why we needed to shoot the New Year. I'm sure there's a reason, though.

In any event, Happy New Year! (Remember to eat ham hocks, collard greens, and black-eyed peas January 1 so you'll have good luck.)

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Snow...




It snowed at my house. All night and into the morning...





















Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas In The Foyer

I suddenly remembered that I had a little already-decorated Christmas tree and actually managed to find it amid the renovation upheaval. So here it is in the foyer being all cheerful and Christmas-y. I like it. This is much better than no decorations at all. I was considering going to Ace Hardware and buying an official "Charlie Brown" tree for $9.99, and I'm glad I don't have to -- though it certainly would have matched the decor.

Anyway, I'm feeling the Christmas Spirit now and sending it to all of you.

Merry Christmas. Happy Holidays. Happy New Year.

(Now I'm off to assemble the potato salad...)


Thursday, December 16, 2010

It's Time To Remember The Almost Christmas Stranger


It's almost Christmas Eve Eve again, the time when my mom and I remember our family's long ago "almost Christmas stranger." (My baby sister was too young to remember that night.)

Here's the link to the story if you haven't already read it. There is also the recipe for my late sister-in-law's wonderful Christmas cake.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Feeling Better...






I'm leaning more toward feeling "good" now, so I thought I'd show you something uplifting in case you're not.

Bluebirds.

In the birdbath.

I love bluebirds -- as you may already know. I had to work to ignore how very cold and windy it was when this photo was taken, though. There was ice floating in the birdbath water, but they don't seem to be wired to care as far as I could tell, keeping their eyes on the prize instead and focusing on the end result. (Clean feathers?) I must say they looked very fluffy and spiffy afterward.

I am so behind on all things Christmasy because of the "under the weather" episode. And the house is still mid-renovation. (Invisible shower leak rotted the floor.) I have no place to put a Christmas tree because of all the furniture and fixture relocation necessary to make room for the carpenter, et al. to do their work. There's a toilet in the bedroom, rolled-up floor covering, an unpacked shower door and sink in the hall. There's also a sink on the front porch (among other things).

But I'm not going to worry about it. I'll just make do with photos from "Christmases Ago." (see below)

I could put a bow on the front porch sink, I guess. Maybe a little greenery. Or a poinsettia. If the songs are correct, Santa already knows where I am without it. (I'm hoping he'll bring me somebody who'll want to "manga" my entire rights-reverted backlist.)

In any event, I hope your holiday preparations are going well, and I'm wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a decidedly Happy Holiday Season.








Monday, November 29, 2010

Oh, Bother.

Under the weather. (Blah and Ow.)

Missed Thanksgiving.

Carpenters working on water-damaged floors.

Can't find ANYTHING.

Need haircut.



Thus concludes The Official Whine Session for the day...


Thursday, November 18, 2010

FYI: RWA Pins




The apparently now discontinued RWA-PAN Pin:









Monday, November 8, 2010

Cheerleading of Yore


My recent venture into JV-Football Spectatorship (EVERY single game + scrimmage) has made me recognize how far "cheerleading" has come. Back in the day it was pretty much a matter of popularity, voice volume, and nerve. Candidates cheered before the student body and then there was a school-wide vote. AND one's family had to have a certain cash flow in order to make the honor, should it be bestowed, possible. It cost money to dre$$ the part.

It still costs money, but now cheerleading is clearly a highly skilled discipline if not an actual sport. No cheerleader could do those kinds of gymnastic moves when I was in high school, and as a result, none of them ever had to get a joint "iced" or wrapped on the sidelines as if they were actually playing the game. And rather than there being a "razzle-dazzle showtime" where fans merely watch and listen, the old cheerleading simplicity always invited serious group participation. I didn't see much of that in any of the games I attended.

I happened to find a mimeographed (you know what that is, right?) sheet of the absolute FIRST cheers for the newly consolidated East Rowan High School tucked away in one of my old yearbooks. Some of them I no longer understand, like the ones where truck-ing, and camel-ing, or Susie Q-ing is called for on the field. (What?) And there's a particular word in one of them that doesn't mean now what it meant then. Modern day cheers seem to be all about positive reenforcement. We're the absolute "BEST," even if we're down six TDs.

ANYWAY, here are some of the antiques -- and don't laugh. I mean it:

E H S

E H S

East Rowan High School,

Yes, Yes, YES!!!!!


BLUE RED WHITE

Let’s go Blue

Lets go red

Let’s go white

Let’s fight, fight, FIGHT!


1 2 3 4

1 - 2 - 3 - 4

Who you gonna yell for

M-U-S-T-A-N-G-S

Mustangs, Mustangs

Fight, fight FIGHT!


WITH A V WITH AN I

With a V with an I

With a C, T, O

With an R, with a Y

With a GO TEAM GO!

All hail VICTORY

VICTORY, VICTORY is our cry

V-I-C-T-O-R-Y

We will win it

You doggone right

East Rowan Mustangs

Fight, Fight, FIGHT!


FIRST YOU BOOGIE WOOGIE

First you boogie woogie

Then you truck on down

East Rowan is going to town,

Susie Q to the left

Susie Q to the right

Come on team

Fight, Fight, FIGHT!


WE’RE FROM EAST HIGH

We’re from East High

And we couldn’t be prouder,

If you can’t hear us now,

We’ll shout a little louder.

(Repeat 4 times)


And in closing, the original and probably long-forgotten school song:


EAST ROWAN HIGH SCHOOL SONG

Our school all cheers for Mustangs

Yea, we hail thee

To thee we will be true,

Cheers for Mustangs

Yea, we hail thee,

On to victory.

The Mustangs, yes, they are the greatest

They fight right to the end!

We will always raise our banner

For DEAR OLD EAST ROWAN!!!!!


And THAT is all for this time. (Tell me you're not laughing.)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Found History (963rd Field Artillery-WW II 1944)

My late father had a number of photographs taken while he was a cannoneer in the 963 Field Artillery during World War II. Most of them have been lost in the shuffle of time.

But I found two the other day, two he had sent to my mother while he was overseas. I can't imagine how he managed to get film developed in the middle of a war, but he apparently did. I believe these were taken sometime around the Battle of the Bulge. He was twenty years old and he hadn't heard the news yet that he had a baby girl. Both photos are labeled.



"Loading the gun" this one says on the back. I believe he's the one on the right helping with the ramrod.





And this one says: "Firing the gun." He may be the one kneeling with his head turned away from the noise.




Both notations are written in unfaded blue-black ink. He had a very nice handwriting, my father. I'm struck by this because I've seen very few things he'd actually written. None of his letters survive. There are the brief captions on the backs of these two photographs, and a note in a velvet jewelry box containing a gold locket embellished with mother-of-pearl and an real-looking enameled violet with an amethyst center he'd given my mother during their wartime courtship.

It said simply: "To the one I love."









Thursday, October 7, 2010

THE MUSIC BOX

BOOK NEWS: A Reissue

THE MUSIC BOX, formerly a Silhouette Special Edition titled TENDERLY, will be released in April 2011. It's currently available for pre-ordering on amazon.com and Barnes & Noble and Borders.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

More Fauna

I've been wondering how tree frogs manage to get inside the house. Apparently they knock and wait for somebody to answer:







Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Rilke's Book of Hours I, 59...



God speaks to each of us as he makes us,
then walks with us silently out of the night.

These are the words we dimly hear:

You, sent out beyond your recall,
go to the limits of your longing.
Embody me.

Flare up like flame
and make big shadows I can move in.

Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.
Just keep going. No feeling is final.
Don't let yourself lose me.

Nearby is the country they call life.
You will know it by its seriousness.

Give me your hand.
Rilke's Book of Hours, I, 59

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Rose in The Jelly Jar

Still test driving the camera. This is one of the roses I rooted last year (or was it the year before?).

Anyway, the cutting came from my late mother-in-law's very antique rose bush. The best thing about it? It smells like a rose. And it definitely does a lot for a jelly far. Oh, and it's sitting on a desk my grandfather made for me when I was a little girl.


Monday, September 13, 2010

Trying Out A New Camera

If you've read this blog for a while, you are aware of the difficulties I've had taking digital photographs. So now I'm try a new and different camera (Happy Birthday to me) and you get to see the first results.

First we have the transplanted mulberry bush sapling in the back yard. It was touch and go for a while, but it finally seems to be happy in its new location. Now all I need are some silk worms:




Next:

Scenery along the way while waiting patiently in the "Car Rider" line to pick up Grand #3. If you time it right, you never have to sit in the sun. If not, you bake:






And this one? I think it must be Glinda's ride. (The Good Witch of the North?) (sigh):


(I didn't say I was getting any better. I just said I had a new camera.)

Friday, September 10, 2010

Thursday Night Lights


Yes. Well. It was that kind of game. ::sigh::

I did get to see Grandson #1 play, and that's about the best I can say of the experience. I am learning, though. About football. Not about taking photos with a digital camera. (I really should go to some kind of digital picture-taking class.)

So what am I learning? I'm learning that JV football is not the sport of gentlemen. Hickory Ridge High School, the opposing team in this instance, rode to victory in a hale of personal penalty fouls and one for unsportsmanlike conduct. I was not happy with this, but the dh assures me that the point is to win, not to "play nice." I see.

I'm learning that old loyalties run deep. The dh wanted to sit on the Hickory Ridge side because the visitor side was far, far away. Good heavens, no. This old Mustang could not do that. (The dh was a Boyden "Yellow Jacket," so he wasn't seeing the problem here.) I had to sit with my own kind, even if it was a hike and a half to get to the visiting team bleachers and even if I was a Mustang WAY back in the day.

And, I learned that when one's team is seriously losing, minutes turn into dog minutes. It was agony, I tell you. Or maybe it was the Old Mustang Hip Joints On Metal Stadium Seating. (Ow) Suffice it to say it was a...long...evening...

That's it for this time.

Friday, September 3, 2010

At The Game... (Or Where Is He?)


The JV Mustangs played their second game Thursday evening. The weather was nice if a bit muggy, and the heaviness of the air was not helped by the overuse of cologne among some of the nearby spectators. Still, it seemed to have kept the mosquitoes away, so that was good.

As you can see in this photograph, the cheerleaders were cheering, and so were the football persons. The question was where was my football person? He always seems to disappear about the time I snap the picture. I'm not sure, but I think he's approximately under No. 71's elbow.

Re: the game itself, I thought the team moved the ball nicely -- lots of those "downs." As for the final score, neither I nor they want to talk about it. ::sigh::

Friday, August 27, 2010

IN THE BACKYARD...



...there is a pecan tree. As I've mentioned before, my late father started this tree from seed. He liked to do that with lemon trees, orange trees, avocado trees, grape vines, and of course, pecans.

The tree is loaded with pecans this year. See? He'd be very pleased, but as I've also mentioned before, I never get to eat any because of the squirrels. Their policy apparently is to harvest early and often. They've already started their bite and toss assessment operation, which will continue until the nuts are mature enough to suit them, at which point it's every squirrel for himself and the tree gets picked clean.

The best I can do is take a picture. (Sigh)



Sunday, August 22, 2010

LIST: 10 UPLIFTING MOVIES (Maybe)














Do I agree with the list? Are these movies "uplifting"? Well, let's see:

UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN: Yes. Very. I have the DVD and watch it often. It's one of my favorite movies mostly because it follows one of my favorite writing themes: The making of a family where no family existed before.

TOOTSIE: I can't say I remember being "uplifted." What I remember is Dustin Hoffman's amazing acting ability. Uplifted or not, it's a movie worth seeing for that alone.

SOUND OF MUSIC: Well, here's the thing. I love the song "My Favorite Things." (I have a musical globe that plays it.) But I never liked the movie. I know I'm supposed to. EVERYBODY loves SOM. But I didn't. I think it was "the Captain." He was a very scary man, and I never got over it.

SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION: Yes, on the "uplifting," and yes, on the complex and riveting plot and the stellar acting. I should get the DVD. I don't know why I haven't.

LOVE, ACTUALLY: Yes. I love this movie and I have the DVD. I make a point to watch it around Christmastime. Love the father-son relationship.

IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE: Okay, I'm not crazy about this movie, either, and for pretty much the same reason. I saw it when I was too young, and James Stewart when he was Mean Father and Husband scared me. I still don't like to watch it, even though everything turns out just fine in the end and he's not mean anymore. I'm just not the least bit "uplifted."

BABE: Yes. "Babe" is a sweet movie. The sequel, not so much.


UP, THE BLIND SIDE, and BREAKING AWAY, I haven't seen these -- but hopefully I will. I can always use a little "uplifting." Hopefully.










Saturday, August 14, 2010

We're the Mustangs, We Can Win!

What a sensation -- seeing my grandson play football for the same high school where both his dad and I went. Same field. Same bleachers. Not the same Cheryl, however. (I forgot how hard stadium seats are. Yikes.)

Want to see him? He's Number 51 (dark blue). (Go Mustangs!)


video

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

SEPTEMBER






I first remember reading Rosamunde Pilchur's work -- her short stories -- in GOOD HOUSEKEEPING magazine. I didn't read any of her novels until much later, and I confess that I completely missed her Mills & Boon-slash-Jane Fraser period.

The later novels are the ones that fed my appreciation of her work. For one thing, I like "cozies," i.e., family sagas that make the reader care about what happens to the story people therein, sans the car chases, explosions, and gratuitous s-e-x.

And I like to "travel" when I read, to be transported "Somewhere Else," to feel that I'm actually there and learning new things, all the while being completely entertained.

Finally, I like the Cornwall roots, I think because of the Cornish miners who emigrated here to work the mines in Gold Hill. (As I've said before -- maybe -- two of my great-great grandfathers had dealings with with gold mines -- one as an owner, one as a miner.)

I loved THE SHELL SEEKERS, and I read WINTER SOLSTICE while keeping a vigil at my late sister-in-law's bedside.

But SEPTEMBER is the one that speaks to me most, simply because of this one passage:



"...Death is nothing at all. It does not count. I have only slipped away into the next room. Nothing has happened. Everything remains exactly as it was. I am I, and you are you, and the old life that we lived so fondly together is untouched, unchanged. Whatever we were to each other, that we are still. Call me by the old familiar name. Speak of me in the easy way which you always used. Put no difference in your tone. Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow. Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes that we enjoyed together. Play, smile, think of me, pray for me. Let my name be ever the household word it always was. Let it be spoken without effort, without the ghost of a shadow upon it. Life means all that it ever meant. It is the same as it ever was. There is absolute and unbroken continuity. What is this death but a negligible accident? Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight? I am but waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere very near, just around the corner. All is well."

From SEPTEMBER © 1991 by Robin Pilchur, Mark Pilchur, Fiona Pilchur and Philippa Imrie.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Cheryl's Food Awards, Fast and Otherwise


Kent Bernhardt, a popular local radio personality, gave out his "Foodie" Awards recently. Since I didn't agree with any of them, I thought I'd do My Own.

Cheryl's "Foodies" go to:

Darrell's in Rockwell: The Small Hotdog, All The Way (Slaw, mustard, chili, onions)
Darrell's in Rockwell Again: The Hamburger Club Sandwich
Darrell's in Rockwell Again: The Hershey Cake (Yum!)
Darrell's in Rockwell Again: The Banana Pudding (Likewise)

Captain D's: Hushpuppies (They taste like real, oniony hushpuppies and not cake.)

Richard's in Salisbury: The fries
Richard's in Salisbury Again: The Small Hotdog, All The Way (Slaw, mustard, chili, onions)

The Farmhouse in Salisbury: The Farmhouse Burger, No Cheese
The Farmhouse in Salisbury Again: The fries

The Cookout in Salisbury: The BLT
The Cookout in Salisbury Again: The Hotdog All The Way (Slaw, mustard, chili, onions)

McDonald's: The Southwest Salad

Zaxby's: The Roadhouse Salad
(I used to like their chicken salad, but apparently they decided it would be better without garlic.) (No)

Johnny's in Rockwell: The iced tea. (Fish and crustacean-eating people tell me the seafood there is excellent. I wouldn't know.)

Taco Bell: Their original taco (Please. Don't try to "improve" it.)

I'm am a big barbecue fan and a number of these restaurants have barbecue. Unfortunately, the barbecue isn't consistent. Sometimes it's great, many times, not so much. Ergo, nobody get's Cheryl's "Foodie" Award for barbecue. Maybe later.

Cheryl's "Eeek, No" Award goes to Wendy's New Apple Chicken salad (It's the cheese. Strong blue cheese does NOT belong on that salad), Subway's Orchard Chicken Salad Sub (I won't go into detail), and Taco Bell's New Cantina Taco. (It's the wrap. And the filling.)

That's it for this time. Happy eating...

Friday, August 6, 2010

Into The Photo Archives (Again)



I've been poking around in the Reavis Family Photo Archives again and I thought I'd show you this one. This is the Reavis home place where the dh grew up. His late mother loved irises and roses, and she filled every possible space in their back yard with them. This was before my time, so I never got to see the iris-rose garden in its heyday, but I'm told people used to ride by in their cars on Sunday afternoons just to see them when they were in bloom.

She was a strong woman, my late mother-in-law. Widowed young and left with a toddler boy and two teenage daughters, she held the family together. She worked in the cotton mill, took care of her children, and she still found the time to do this. I wish I'd told her how much I admired her...




Saturday, July 31, 2010

...Tiger, Oh My...

The latest Beloved Critter, immediately post-suturing in MawMaw's ER. (Detached muzzle, it was.)

It was all very traumatic, but as you can see, he's definitely smiling.









So what else is new? I finished reading Maggie O'Farrell's AFTER YOU'D GONE. Stayed up WAY too late doing it, but it's that kind of book. I just had to know WHAT ALICE SAW.

It's written in much the same style as THE WIVES OF HENRY OADES -- transition-free "soundbite-slash-tweet" prose only with more head, and verb tense, and time and place hopping. But it was immediately compelling and stayed that way. The writing is visual. The writing is emotional -- sometimes gut-wrenchingly so. And I very much appreciated Ms. O'Farrell's respect for her reader in that she didn't resort to the almost obligatory, literary "gotcha, you blockhead -- didn't see that coming, did ya?" plot twist at the end. (You know who your are. Okay, yes, I'm thinking of ATONEMENT. And maybe THE MAGUS, though pretty much all of that had the "You Blockhead" feel.)

Anyway.

The bottom line is that I truly enjoyed AFTER YOU'D GONE. I'm glad I found it. My only complaint is that I read it as an Adobe Digital Edition downloaded from the North Carolina Digital Library, and there were a significan number of typos.

Other news: My FAVORITE HOUSEGUEST is here. Once again, I'm working hard to keep him fed. He's way past the needing a Beloved Critter sutured stage ("Dot," the Beagle, that would be), but well into the Bottomless Pit one. (How can fifteen-year-old boys EAT so much?)

Till next time...

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Silly Banz


You're probably familiar with the shaped rubber band craze -- though I'm not sure they're actually made of rubber. My granddaughter is certainly into them. Her arm often looks like the one above.

But I saw something yesterday that made me smile. And elderly man dressed in an impressive dark gray suit, crisp dress shirt, silk tie. He looked very "uptown."

But what really caught my eye? Peeping below his sleeve was single, blue Silly Banz. It was so incongruous and so cute -- and immediately suggested that somewhere in his life, there is a little girl who loves him.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Already?




In forty-five minutes of so, No. 1 Grandson, a.k.a. Favorite Houseguest, will turn the big 1-5. I can't believe he's almost driving. Tempest does indeed fugit. (Or however that Latin phrase on the grandfather clocks goes.) All I know is he was toddler just the other day. (sigh)

See?




Saturday, July 17, 2010

For Your Amusement


There is now an online amusement for writers and non-writers alike called I WRITE LIKE... where one submits a sample of one's writing and it is immediately assessed to be "like" whatever writer's writing it decides your sample resembles.





My first submission revealed that I write like Stephen King -- which I don't mind.


My second submission revealed that I write like Dan Brown -- which I do.










Yes, I know the man has made millions. I'd like to have his checks -- it would help my assorted loved ones to no end if I had a cash flow of that magnitude -- but I do NOT want to write like him. I can say that I admire his storytelling, i.e., the unusual premise of his Da Vinci book. But his way with words? Not so much.


You can click on the above link if you want to give it a whirl.



Friday, July 9, 2010

(Sigh)


I just read where the Roy Rogers Museum in Branson MO has been closed, and they're auctioning off all the Roy Rogers-Dale Evans memorabilia. Apparently all his (and her) fans are too old or too dead now to come to the museum, and they couldn't keep it open any longer.
(re-sigh)

THE WIVES OF HENRY OADES -The Book With The Incongruous Cover


Don't let the dreamy lady on the cover fool you. She has little to do with the content and suggests nothing of the unusual and often journalistic-slash-Dragnet"Just the facts, ma'am" writing style, i.e., prose which is highly readable, perfectly suited to our "sound-bite" conditioned brains.

And neither does Cover Lady hint at the grittiness of the ordeals of the young and ambitious Henry Oades and the women he married or the subtle historical detail deftly inserted to add texture and a compelling verisimilitude. So forget the cover. It's the plot and the unemotional It-is-what-it-is delivery of it that's the thing.

I read the first half of the book in one sitting, it's that intriguing. It fit my criteria for a "good book." I like not to be able to anticipate the plot and I like to learn things as I go (I knew next to nothing about New Zealand's indigenous people and nothing at all about California's having had the death penalty for the crime of bigamy in the late 19th century) -- but I don't want to feel like I'm learning. I still want to be entertained. And for someone who likes poking around in history, the fact that the book is based on a possibly true incident is -- pardon the cliche -- icing on the cake.

The Wives of Henry Oades does lose some of its highly sustained momentum at the end, but it is still well worth your time. I definitely recommend it.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Farewell, ATWT




I was going to show you a video tribute to ATWT in honor of its September demise, but once it was embedded into the blog, it went all "Sorcerer's Apprentice" and wouldn't turn off.

Click on the above link if you want to see it on their website.

Regarding the cancellation, let's just say that I don't know quite what I'll do to fill those five hours a week. I do know I won't be watching a game show. Never did like those things...


Sunday, July 4, 2010

HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY


The Flag is out. The morning is a cool and breezy 67 degrees. Lovely.


I notice that Barnes & Noble is offering FREE eBOOK DOWNLOADS, i.e., "AMERICAN CLASSICS" until tomorrow, Monday, the 5th, at midnight. Here's the link if you happen to be interested. There is a CATCH, of course -- you have to have an account or you have to create one. Creating an account will involve giving them your credit card number. (Very sneaky of them, I say.)


Do have a safe and happy Fourth. I'm off to read the Sunday Salisbury Post...

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Cheer Up, Baby Boy

(There has to be a good job out there SOMEWHERE...)




Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Poking Around In History Again


Sometimes the most interesting part of an old photograph is what's written on the back. This one, for example is a "carte de visite," a photograph of a young woman circa American Civil War, I would guess, by the style of her clothes. It was made by the "G. W. Minnis Photographic Gallery, 9th and Main Street, Richmond, Virginia.

I found it at the big monthly flea market at the Metrolina Fair Grounds in Charlotte a number of years ago. I'm not going to show you the actual photograph because of what is written on the back in a spidery feminine hand:

"This is an indifferent picture but I send it as it is the best I have. Don't show it to strangers."





I don't know why she didn't want people to see it. She's no great beauty to be sure, and she could use a good shampooing -- but she wouldn't, as we say here in the South "draw warts on a washtub." Of course, being my inquisitive self, I do wonder about it, and I wonder who she sent the photograph to -- a beau? a brother? a sister? a friend? Who kept it safe all this time?


This next one you will probably be able to read yourself without a transcription, but I'll tell you what it says anyway:

"Grounds for divorse (sic). If you look closely you can see them hugging each other."






Well, no, you can't. I thought at first that whoever had written this was just kidding around -- because if they weren't, I fear they had a pathologically suspicious nature.

I'm not going to show you this photograph, either, because the people in it might be recognized. I'm going to tell you about it instead.

The picture is of a man and woman, neither of whom is particularly attractive. He looks older-- I would say late 40s, early 50s. They are standing in a yard in front of a bush. Both of them are looking directly into the camera. He has on a suit with pinstriped trousers and a dark jacket -- it reminds me of the Monopoly board game for some reason. She has on a suit, too. The skirt is narrow and falls well below the knee -- which makes me think circa 1930s -- and it looks like it might be tweed. She is smiling; he just looks...I was going to say "pleased," but that's too strong a word. "Pleasant" is a better word. He looks pleasant -- like someone who would be easy to get along with. And, yes, they are arm-in-arm. But hugging? No. His hand is resting just above her elbow and not on her torso at all where the touch would be much more intimate. And he's not squeezing her. She's just standing there. I can't see where her hand is, but I don't think it's up to any mischief. If anything, these two people look father-daughter or niece-uncle.

The bigger question for me is who wrote on the back of the picture, her husband? his wife?

And boy, do I wonder what happened next...