Monday, June 1, 2009

Day 152: The Phoenix

Day 152: The Phoenix, originally uploaded by susanvg.

It was one of those days, when photography was not on my mind. Scan the house - what story is there to tell? This bird is on a small, wood, carved table from Indonesia. My father-in-law was in the Dutch civil service (a good colonialist) and served for many years in Indonesia - from 1929 until about 1951. He, his wife and their growing family moved to different parts of the archipelago as he achieved higher status, eventually becoming governor of a province. As they moved, they would sell a lot of their furniture and buy some more in the next town, often at auctions. My mother-in-law recalled that this table came from one such auction.

They did not bring a lot with them when they left Indonesia. After losing most of their belongings during the Second World War (they were interned in Japanese camps), they re-established themselves. When Indonesia became independent, they returned to the Netherlands and soon after moved to Canada.

Like the phoenix who rises from the ashes, they were forced by circumstances in the world to remake their lives several times.


  1. Susan, you always manage to tell a fascinating story, and tell it extremely well. Me - I'm reduced to taking photos of my son's tshirts.

  2. You found a story in your house after all, and a very good one at that. And a great photo to go with it!