Day 4 - A Day with Granny


Day 1 - Arrival
Day 2 - Raglan to Urenui
Day 3 - The Long Road to Levin
Day 4 - A Day with Granny
Day 5 - A Wellington Wander
Day 6 - The Tour to Taupo
Day 7 - Rolling to Rotarua
Day 8 - The Redolence of Rotorua
Day 9 - The Beach at Bowentown
Day 10 - Outtrip to Ohope
Day 11 - Meander over McLaren Falls
Day 12 - Mission to Mt. Manganui
Day 13 - Shopping the Strand
Day 14 - Wistful in Whangamata
Day 15 - Cruising to Coromandel
Day 16 - On the Road to Orere Point
Day 17 - Departure

Tuesday, March 19

The morning arrived with clouds rolling in, actually warming things up after the cold night. Being as far as south as we are in New Zealand, there are occasional south-westers, where wind right off of Antarctica blows up north, across the islands of New Zealand and freezes everything and everybody. Well, maybe not that cold, but it was a bizarrely different night than the previous one.

We all woke up slowly, having gotten to bed late, we took our time getting going. Today was a pretty peaceful day, Richard and Granny Stanton pretty well spent the entire day pouring through old family photographs and talking about her life, her parents life and her grandparents life. This is pretty much the same thing they did the last time Richard and Stacy visited, but there was a difference. Granny Stanton's brother Mervyn had fallen very ill and was in full time care in the hospital. Much of Mervyn's photographs and other family artifacts were now at Granny Stantons.

As planned after the last trip, Richard brought a scanner with him - picked up at the new Frye's in Industrial City, California (and on opening day no less). The scanner is USB powered, avoiding the issues of getting adapters that work with 240 volts.

While the girls went for wanders around Levin, Richard and Granny Stanton went page by page through dozens of photo albums, talking about family history. Richard scanned numerous photographs at as high a resolution as the computer could stand. He also took copious notes, OCRed a number of family history documents and made MP3 records of his grandmother's stories.

Early in the morning, you can see the laptop and scanner set up, the piles of photo albums and such are just out of site on the left. Stacy grabs a picture during the story gathering... Granny Stanton talks while Richard takes notes.
Hours later, Richard and Mona are still hard at it, the girls pass the time with their new finds from Levin - fairy coloring books and paper dolls.  

Unfortunately, the scanned photographs are in TIF format, and the tools installed in Windows XP and Office XP don't convert from TIF to JPEG well. When we're home, PhotoShop will be deployed to do a good job of converting and cleaning up the photographs.

In the meantime, here's a small sample of the photos found:

A picture taken in Malaysia, probably around 1935. Granny Stanton's father is in the center with his kids. He was an elephant control officer, these are some of his trophies. One of these elephant's feet is now standing in a hallway at Granny Stanton's home! This is a picture of the entire Plane family, Granny Stanton is about 15, standing with her face in shadow. This is taken on a ship bound for England, as it was passing through the Suez Canal, November 1937.

Although not a particularly busy day, the intense concentration of listening, understanding and recording family history quite exhausted both Granny Stanton and Richard - they were first to bed, even before the kids. The next day the family would take a day trip out of Levin.