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Dora at the Well #2

Thanks so much for reposting this. You know there is something special about this one.

I was hoping that a higher resolution scan would produce more details. There are some. There is a dead tree in the background directly behind the well. And are those Yuccas or Cannas growing along the dirt road leading off to the right? I still don't see any utility poles on the horizon.

The larger scan helped some but it appears that the camera was a limiting factor too. There are blurs in the print that might indicate a thumbprint on the lens or maybe just a little operator motion. There is an interesting shadow between the porch post and the edge of the print. Could it be the blades of a windmill? Or is it another plant, out of focus in the blurry spot?

The downspout from the eave trough is directed into the well in a kind of make-do way. And the well opening has a lid to keep the well cool in those 100 degree days (and nights!) of the Texas summer. Also it kept some of the dust and the bugs and birds out... Yes, they are conserving water.

I agree that it is an older well too. The earth around the base has blown away. Depending on the location and date, it could be an effect of the infamous “dust bowl” of the thirties. Oh yes, there are parts of Texas that look like this today too.

But I think you know, these details are not really the heart of this photo. It’s Dora. Dora is dressed up for an occasion, maybe only the photograph, but I bet it’s more to do with the photographer.

Dora at the Well #2, originally uploaded by meagain625.

There is a hot, summer breeze blowing into her face. Her skirt and hair and the leaves on the trees and plants are affected. It’s a sundress and two-tone high heels. Her shoulder-length hair is carefully brushed into shape. Look at that big lipstick smile. This is the part of the photo that is really the story. There was something happy going on in that stark, hardworking life, out in the sun of the Texas southwest desert. It is good to know there was a time like this in their lives: A time to dress up and act silly, coquet and coquette, to giggle and laugh and be human. When Dora was born, people were still discussing that new state up north: Oklahoma. Her parents probably grew up in a “territory.” It is good to remember that although it seems stark and rustic to us now, that it was all they had back then and they were quite happy with it.

Thanks for posting this one. It’s not just a picture, it’s a chance to feel good about people and know there were warm and juicy parts to their lives. An old philosopher I met once said it best, “It’s the same circles, just different people going around in them.”

view profile meagain625 says: None of my little tabs are working (all sizes, for instance), and even I wanted to take a closer look at this one. It looks like that plant might be yucca, judging from the slim length of flower stalk at the top. I think the shadow next to the porch is a plant, since it is in shadow anyway... Looks like a cactus growing at the base of the well.

Dora does look happy as she can be. My aunt Jessie told me that Dora had a childish quality about her, but would not be more specific than that. That could be a good thing, as children delight in the smallest things, and don't think too far into the future. I almost want to have that same quality about myself.

Dora does look great, at the prime of her time, and I love those shoes! Her dress reminds me a little of Mrs Cleaver on "Leave It To Beaver", I think it might just be the stripes, since "June Cleaver" wore a fuller skirt on her dresses.

I'm a little proud of this picture. The whole scenario just appeals to me, and I think you hit it, anyjazz... I think she dressed up for the photographer. I can just hear it: "Come on, honey. Let me get one of you in that pretty dress. We can start at the well, and end up...well...somewhere more private..." :)

And some of the previous conversation:

view profile bunaen says: Cute: Both Dora and the well. That looks one of them portable jobs (not Dora, the well).

view profile meagain625 says: Yep, you can tell that rain water was being saved. I have no idea where this could have been, except somewhere in Wilson County, Texas. The time that most of these photos were taken, Mom and her friends never travelled far from home. The world didn't exist too far beyond the county line, except boys went off and died halfway around the world, and sometimes came back, changed forever.

My Uncle Carroll died a couple of years ago, he was in his 80s, and he never forgot the horrors he saw/endured back then.

view profile anyjazz65 says: Chores? In heels? Hm. Yes, a larger size might be fun. Good find.

view profile meagain625 says: *digs back through a stack of black and white photos while they slip this way and that* I can probably find it, and I am training on me to learn more about that scanner I had to have... I couldn't stand it once MikeyG told me he got a scanner. You know how it is... Trying to keep up with the flickr crowd ;) I might just be able to rescan and repost. I haven't learned how to add the pictures or text from one post to another. Probably because I would show everyone my goof ups on line instead of working it out in private. Vanity, I suppose, is difficult to hide.

view profile cornerofthefield says: I like Dora. I've seen her before somewhere, haven't I? The well is a pretty cool number also.

view profile meagain625 says: She is in *so many* of the pictures Mom had! I have searched and searched for this one, to rescan it at a larger size, and can't seem to find it. But boy, when I do find it, I will scan it again for sure! Even *I* would like to see this one larger.

view profile cornerofthefield says: I'm still marveling over those heels. I guess the picture was posed. I wouldn't be able to walk in those over that dirt with a full bucket of water let alone without one.

view profile meagain625 says: My thoughts, too. I like this one just because of the well, and the obvious fact that the whole set-up on the well was not professional. Texas ranchers, in a drought, will do some strange things to conserve water. The well has been there for a while, the ground has been washed or blown away over the years, but the bucket looks a lot newer. I think I have a picture or two taken at the corner of the porch, but a slide show shows I don't have any of them posted to flickr. *mental note to check on that*

I did learn from going through the slide show that the pictures show large even if you can't view them large on the post page. I'm learning more about this flickr thing everyday :)

Can anyone identify this painting?
Click for larger version.

A very,merry unbushday to you!
It's a hoot!

Yes, I refuse to use

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