Slip Sliding Away

Posted by at 13:23

The show is almost over, dear readers. This is the last of the series in which I try to ascertain the location of the slides I inherited from my father. Previous editions saw us hopping from Spain to Mexico and Sweden, and from France to Turkey and Greece. Here’s hoping the four pictures below will take us even further afield, to new continents and countries, or will simply serve as a celebration of one man’s perspective on a bygone age.

These debonair gents are probably my father’s clients or business partners. Could they be Italian or Spanish? Maybe this photo was taken somewhere in South America? Or Belgium perhaps? The man in the middle could be the young Hercule Poirot, Agatha Christie’s master detective. Seldom have I seen such a perfect side-parting and moustache. The same goes for the man in the background, posing with his pretty partner. Beyond them is an arch leading to a park or garden. I can’t quite make out the inscription. Is it in Latin?

Seven children selling sugar cane. The girl in the red dress has decided to liven up the photo by trying to scratch her brain with sugar cane. Some of the others are sucking and chewing their sweet treats. It looks hot and dusty, but the kids are all wearing woolly jumpers. Could this be autumn in Greece or Spain? As I was trying to make out the number plates on the cars in the background, I spotted my dad’s old Volvo Amazon station wagon!

From dusty to dustier. At first, I thought this might be Egypt or some other North-African country, because of the palm trees and because the vendor selling the wooden pitchforks is wearing a chador. But the other women in the picture certainly aren’t making any attempt to cover up. So maybe this is southern Spain? The sign on the truck in the background reads: “Refresca Major”.

I’ve left my favourite till last. I love the dynamism of this photo, the expressions of the men and boys lining the paddock (I can see only one woman), the handler’s crisp white clothes contrasting with the grey horse, and the scarlet shirt of the boy who has climbed up on the trailer in the background. There is some serious business going on here, judging by the faces of the crowd and the stern poses of the bowler-hatted inspection team in the foreground. Could this be an auction of some kind? Or a horse show? Possibly in England?

Thanks to everyone who helped pinpoint the location of previous photos in this series. It’s been great fun. I may even decide to turn my attention to my wife’s collection of photos, taken during her 25-year career as a professional traveller. She has two large plastic crates full of visual soup gathering dust in our basement. I wonder if they’re suitable for a broader audience…

8 Responses to Slip Sliding Away

  1. Koen Meier

    This cannot be elsewhere as in The Netherlands. The roof tiles, the style brick building, the horse trailer are su typically dutch that it cannot possibly be in Germany nor in Belgium.
    At local festivities there is in some places, such as Groningen (where this picture was not taken), a “paardenkeuring”, a horse show where the horse judged best for its type will be given a price. The men in bowler hats are members of the jury. The man in white leads the horse and runs alongside with the horse to show how it stands, walks and runs.

    • Adriaantje

      haha palmtrees in holland :) right haha

  2. Koen Meier

    This cannot be elsewhere as in The Netherlands. The roof tiles, the style brick building, the horse trailer are su typically dutch that it cannot possibly be in Germany nor in Belgium.
    At local festivities there is in some places, such as Groningen (where this picture was not taken), a “paardenkeuring”, a horse show where the horse judged best for its type will be given a price. The men in bowler hats are members of the jury. The man in white leads the horse and runs alongside with the horse to show how it stands, walks and runs.

    • Adriaantje

      haha palmtrees in holland :) right haha

  3. eline

    the first one might be Greece; maybe the metro station in Kifissia, posh northern suburb of athens. i thought i could read βασιλειων (=kingdom) or sth like that (the latin) but i might just be making this up…

  4. eline

    the first one might be Greece; maybe the metro station in Kifissia, posh northern suburb of athens. i thought i could read βασιλειων (=kingdom) or sth like that (the latin) but i might just be making this up…

  5. Richard

    Apologies for my belated reply! You may well be right, Eline, because there’s a whole series of photos of a trip to Athens.
    And you may be right too, Koen! Could it be one of the southern provinces of the Netherlands.
    The photos with the palm trees might be somewhere in southern Spain.

  6. Richard

    Apologies for my belated reply! You may well be right, Eline, because there’s a whole series of photos of a trip to Athens.
    And you may be right too, Koen! Could it be one of the southern provinces of the Netherlands.
    The photos with the palm trees might be somewhere in southern Spain.

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