Sunday, June 17, 2007

June 19, 2007 HDR Thriller (Helsinki)


Hernesaari, originally uploaded by mylhainen. Click on pic, see it in Flickr.

Hope everyone had a happy Fathers Day. My father passed away two years ago. Thought about him today. His parents came through Ellis Island from Helsinki, Finland (location of the photo above). My grandfather was just 18 when he came over...a shipyard worker and carpenter. He came to New York and then Pennsylvania to work for the railroad. Lost his leg in a horrible railcar accident. His friends and expert machinists at the railroad presented him with a custom prosthetic leg that he used the rest of his life as it was much better than the one he had gotten from the doctors. He went back back to New York and became a violin maker.

My father learned those skills and made sailboats instead of violins. Built his first small sailboat in a east side Manhattan tenement building when he was a teenager. Transported it piece by piece on the the subway to City Island with his friends and younger brother and reassembled it there. Three of them carried the mast the same way, late at night when there would be nobody around, holding onto it outside the subway car through the window. They sailed that boat up and down Long Island Sound as teenagers and beyond, and built several more.

I try to remember all of this when I have some difficult task ahead. Thanks, Dad.

The photo above IS LOVELY IN LARGE ON BLACK.

4 comments:

Kim said...

Absolutely stunning photo......
It sounds like you have really special memories of your Dad....
interesting to read about your Grandfather...obviously they were both craftsmen....

paisley said...

what a stunning set of memories.. you come from some very interesting parentage thats for sure!!!!

Morriconei said...

You picked the prefect photo for that story, truly perfect. Thanks for sharing.

HDReader said...

Thanks much, all.