Through the looking glass …

Photo: Riihele. All rights reserved

We are not quite there weather-wise,yet,
but every day it is getting closer

that the leaves will burst out
and the blossoms bloom!

How are things with you?

Take good care. Rii :))

2 0 0 9!


© Photo: By Riihele. All rights reserved.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,

Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson, 1850

Have a super new year 2009 in every way!

PICTURE PERFECT: CONTRAST


This week’s theme on

PICTURE PERFECT
is

CONTRAST

I call this picture:

FIRE & ICE!

The FLAMING HOT FIRE of the orange rising sun in the photo looks like a fireball had burst on the scene, and the contrasting extreme cold and frost on the branches and on the ground look so chill-into-your-bones ICY C-O-L-D. Brrr….

Day Breaking over the River

It was an extremely cold day, as it was minus 36*C or thereabouts, when I took this shot of FIRE & ICE and a selection of other similar photos in Finland in February 2007. Some of the photos were taken in the morning of that day when the sun was rising, and the others slightly later in the afternoon as the sun was setting. There is a collection of these photos in this link.

Tis for now, Rii

© All photos Riihele. All rights reserved

PICTURE PERFECT: A Song Title

The theme this week on
PICTURE PERFECT

is
A SONG TITLE

This RHAPSODY in BLUE is my contribution. The photo was taken during the holidays in December in the Finnish countryside. This title came to me while looking at the photo; for to me, everything is dancing: the falling snowflakes, the lights on the pier and even the trees are swaying….

Rhapsody in Blue
Rhapsody in Blue is a musical composition by George Gershwin for solo piano and jazz band written in 1924, which combines elements of classical music with jazz-influenced effects. The composition was orchestrated by Ferde Grofé three times, in 1924, in 1926, and finally in 1942. The piece received its premiere in a concert entitled An Experiment in Modern Music, which was held on 12 February 1924, in Aeolian Hall, New York, by Paul Whiteman and his band with Gershwin playing the piano. The version for piano and symphony, orchestrated by Ferde Grofé in 1942, has become one of the most popular American concert works.
Gershwin hastily set about composing a piece, and on the train journey to Boston, the ideas of Rhapsody in Blue came to his mind. He told his first biographer Isaac Goldberg in 1931:
“It was on the train, with its steely rhythms, its rattle-ty bang, that is so often so stimulating to a composer – I frequently hear music in the very heart of the noise… And there I suddenly heard, and even saw on paper – the complete construction of the Rhapsody, from beginning to end. No new themes came to me, but I worked on the thematic material already in my mind and tried to conceive the composition as a whole. I heard it as a sort of musical kaleidoscope of America, of our vast melting pot, of our unduplicated national pep, of our blues, our metropolitan madness. By the time I reached Boston I had a definite plot of the piece, as distinguished from its actual substance.” (Wikipedia)

All of the themes rely on the blues scale, which includes lowered sevenths and a mixture of major and minor thirds. Each theme appears both in orchestrated form and as a piano solo. There are considerable differences in the style of presentation of each them.

Tis for now, Rii

© All photos Riihele. All rights reserved

Here is the bonus:

GALLERIA: On a cold & frosty…

Here we go round the mulberry bush,
The mulberry bush, the mulberry bush,
Here we go round the mulberry bush,

On a cold and frosty morning— AHEM — Afternoon…
Tis for now. Rii
TREE trunk with sunrays
Sidewalk, Stream and Sunrays framed SERENE but Frosty Tis Frosty, Folks The Last of sunrays for the daySun is not warming my frostbiteTREES & STREAMS
© Photos: Riihele. All rights reserved

CHILD MATTERS or Slavery in Modern Times


“Twice a year in Carrickmacross and surrounding towns a fair was held where men and girls rented their labour to well-to-do farmers for six months. It was Ireland’s version of the slave market.”
(Patrick Kavanagh ‘The Hired Boy’)


As you know by my blogs, that I do have varied interests in life and the living all the way from fashion, humour, blondes & photos, even frogs et funerals to anything in-between to the more serious matters of current affairs, politics and policies, so here is a more serious one on this Children’s Day in Finland. This is an updated entry of autumn 2006.

A Few Facts on the Child Labour/Slavery
:

  • Child labour is a pervasive problem throughout the world, especially in developing countries. Africa and Asia together account for over 90 percent of total child employment. (World Bank Org.)
  • Children work the longest hours and are the worst paid of all labourers (The International Labour Office ILO in the World Bank Study Bequele and Boyden 1988).
  • Just 5 per cent of child labour worldwide is for the export industry. The rest is for local agriculture and domestic work in people’s homes. (The International Labour Organisation estimate)
  • One in eight children (179 million) around the world are involved in the worst forms of child labour – work which is hazardous to their physical, mental or moral well being. (The International Labour Organisation (ILO) estimate. BBC article(old) estimate 246 million (from years ago).
  • In Africa one in three children have jobs.
  • There are an estimated 500,000 child soldiers worldwide.

CHILD LABOR: ISSUES, CAUSES AND INTERVENTION (World Bank Org.)

I did some research into the matter, so I decided to compile a few thoughts and facts on the same. First of all, it is not a new phenomenon but has been since time immemorial in almost every country in the world. We in the Western Europe do not have it blatantly into our face presently, but nevertheless it is there, as more and more of these children are smuggled into our towns and even into our neighbourhoods.

Secondly, as we see from the Facts above that I listed: only 5 per cent of the child labour is involved with the export business in the countries, the rest being in the domestic trades in their respective nations. This piece of news is most certainly ‘news’ to me for I have thought that the children would have been the main slave labour for producing export goods.

Anybody who has read/seen the films about the Dickens’ books like ‘Oliver Twist’ is acutely aware that the west has had their share of the children being treated as ‘nothing, nobody’ until the compulsory education, the child allowance and the general benevolence towards children became more of the norm. I am using that expression because as we know the child abuse is still rather widespread – but just in another way. The opening quote on this entry by Patrick Kavanagh was true to many other nations’ children in the times past, including Finland.
Even more facts:

  1. The International Labour Organization in 2005 estimated at least 2.4 million people have been trafficked.
  2. The United Nations estimates that 1.5 million children under 16 are trafficked worldwide each year. (Daily Telegraph article online 4.6.2006)


UNICEF CHILD LABOUR QUIZZ in this link.

Fired Up Blonde, Riihele xx


The solution to this problem lies in my mind:

1.)

With the LEADERS of these nations who have the power to change the circumstances of these children through the legislation via education to empower them. Also, the children’s allowance et cetera to make it worthwhile, so that the parents need not ‘sell’ or be forced to ‘hand over’ their children to this slavery. (It is the relatives in many cases who are forced to hand in the children as pawns for life because of debts accumulated.)
There is no excuse to say that there are no funds; I will not buy into that as other nations have done it with the means that they had at the time e.g. Finland from 1948 started to pay children’s allowance even though it was only three years after the wars while at the same time still paying both to Russia (reparation) and USA (loan) huge amounts of money and after losing tens of thousands of men in their best working age at the WWII.
2.)

The International Community at large through e.g. organizations* to implement pressure on the leadership in these nations to stop treating their young worse than cattle and give them life as a human beings fully participating in their own life and living.
( aka *ILO, World Bank, UNICEF et cetera)

I have already quoted articles by The World Bank, ILO – The International Labor Organisation et cetera – meaning: they know the problem and it is the high time to do something about it all instead just compiling more figures of the same!!

There are other things as the international business and manufacturing industry that many mentioned in the comments previously: yes shame and name them.

This will solve the other 5 per cent of the actual problem.

NOTICE:
Only 5 per cent of the children are made to work in the export trade. That means that the 95 per cent are not. (These figures by ILO = The International Labour Organisation).

Child Matters pun in the name is this that a CHILD DOES MATTER; and also ‘matters’ as in subjects, issues, items, topics, questions and things concerning children.

PICTURE PERFECT: REPETITION


This beautiful manor, Lövstabruk, in Upper Uppland in Sweden was built from the 1600´s to the 1800´s in the likeness to Versailles in Paris. It lies just over 100 km north of Stockholm and 45 km north of Uppsala. Lövstabruk Manor House was plundered and burned in 1719 but was rebuilt building by building during the following decades. (Unfortunately, all those lovely photos and texts in the links highlighted are only in Swedish, for in English there is a totally different page that comes up!) Did you notice that there is even a variation to my photo on these Pelargoniums on the page?

This manor has the honour of being very much in the fore-front of the industry of melting first class iron that laid the foundation on the wealth of Sweden. Walloonbruk in Uppland is a region of unique, historic, industrial sites. Beautiful environments, excellent cuisine and lodgings at the inns and manors, the site tells about this fabulous place.

Decorative Plants @ Lövstabruk
Walloonbruk

An industrial village where natural resources are processed is called a ”bruk” in Swedish. Within the Uppland region all the necessary raw materials for iron production were available: ore from the Dannemora mines, forests for charcoal, and water for powering blast furnaces and forges. More than thirty ironworks were established in the region. These ”vallonbruk” derive their name from the skilled workers who came to Sweden from Liege region in Walloonia of present day Belgium. The craftsmen were brought here by far-seeing industrial entrepreneurs, among them Louis De Geer, who recognized the value of their professional skills. Walloon forging was the principal iron working method here from the early 17th century until the early 20th century. The vallonbruks bar iron was for many years the finest quality available in the world, and much of the production was exported with the greater part going to England.

The bruks were much more than factories. They were complete miniature societies where many people worked and spent their entire lives. Working conditions were hard, but the management also took responsibility for the workers social welfare. Today most of the vallonbruks are well-preserved, unique tourist attractions and a few still maintain world-leading metal industries.

Lövstabruk Manor House

This the photo that I took of the Main House in Lövstabruk Manor which is located near Uppsala – the Athens of Sweden.

The large photo is my entry on the PICTURE PERFECT theme REPETITION’
– the photo does bear repetition, methinks!

Decorative Plants @ Lövstabruk

Tis for now, Rii xx

© Photos: By Riihele. All rights reserved.