A Blast of the Past — someone else’s past


Earlier this week I started a project I have been intending to work on for quite some time. It will take quite awhile to finish. That project is scanning all our non-digital photos into the computer.

Part of the length of the project is going to be how many photos we have. Another part is going to be locating where all the photos have been stashed and not looked at for the multitude of years since some of them have been taken.

I started by pulling out one photo album from a set we had in a cabinet. They were pictures of a trip Betsy took with her parents to Europe to visit her sister and brother-in-law in the Peace Corps. This was after I knew Betsy, but before we were married, so except for a few stray pictures of me stuck in the back of the album, I didn’t really know anything about the pictures. I recognized the people I know now, before I knew them.

The thing I found interesting is what you see and recognize about pictures when you weren’t there, and weren’t involved. Some of the pictures looked almost postcard-quality — pictures of castles on hillsides, windmills in the Netherlands, etc.

The trip was in 1992, so 23 years ago. I’m going to post some of the photos here, with my comments on what I know, or surmise about them, without the benefit of asking those who were in them what they were. Just to show what sort of impressions they bring.


Very stylish pose of my now mother-in-law on a bench somewhere in Europe.


Picture of my now father-in-law in a cabin of some sort. Probably makes more sense for this to be a train, but something about it makes me want to think it is a boat.


These are neat hanging ships. Wonder where and why there were made to hang there.


My now father-in-law in front of a windmill. I presume in Holland.


My now father-in-law on a bridge somewhere. Sequentially I’m guessing Holland.


The way the houses are set below the street, and with the height of my father-in-law, those houses look too small for him, almost a sort of gingerbread or toy type quality.


My father-in-law trying some sort of stilts.


A picture right before this labeled the house as that of the Ten Booms, making this “The Hiding Place.”


Betsy as a much younger but just as beautiful lady posing somewhere. Is that someone under a piano behind her?


Betsy in front of a windmill, with a hand on what looks like a big corkscrew section of a water pump. Is that part of how they pumped the water out of Holland?


There were several pictures of this church. Nice stained glass.


A street artist must have drawn this. I see his tip bowl there with the “Danke!” for thank you. Quite an impressive picture.


Street musicians.


Postcard perfect.


Betsy posed in nature somewhere.


Betsy and my father-in-law below some sort of ruin.


Neat whole. Betsy and my mother-in-law walking through.


Mother-in-law at a ruin of some sort.


My father-in-law, presumably at the same ruin.


Another picture for a postcard.


Gravestone for a Mozart. Just not sure which one.


This picture was very dark in the original. Couldn’t hardly see anything. Amazing what the digital editing was able to bring out. I see Betsy, Kent, and Carolyn. I assume the other two are people Kent and Carolyn worked with in the Peace Corps.


Another family picture with Peace Corps friends.


Carolyn, Kent and Betsy posing on the stairs to somewhere. Not sure what that interesting building is behind them.


The 92 here was my first clue to the year of the trip. Not sure what Barbakan means.


Crossing the street.


Kent and Carolyn


I assume this is part of Kent and Carolyn’s Peace Corps apartment in Slovakia.


Betsy and her mom. Are those more tombstones in the background?


Someone explaining something to Betsy.


Thrown in the same set, but I think this is a different year. Somewhere between 1992 and 1995. Think I ended up wearing out that orange shirt I wore it so often.


Obviously a different year, if Carolyn is back in the US. Here I am wearing my other shirt of many colors — more purple here, less orange.


This comes from before the trip. Kent and Carolyn’s wedding.


Wedding Photo — Kent and Carolyn.


Carolyn and Betsy in bridal gown and bridesmaid gown. That is a very good look for Betsy. Need to find more sharp outfits like that for her.


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