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Georgia On My Mind Again, Part 10

Another beautiful day in Georgia, perfect for exploring and seeing the sights. This particular day, we took a short journey (21 miles/28 minutes) to Murphy, NC to the Flea Market. Yes, I have been to other flea markets but never one so large with such a variety of goods for sale.

The entrance closest to the parking lot went right past a vendor selling wood planks perfect for furniture, mantels, wall decor, art or whatever your clever, creative mind can come up with.

And these planks were not junk wood — check out the beautiful grain in this piece on display inside. When I lived in California, I had a woodworking shop in my garage and so this sight took me back to those days and reminded me of how much fun I had making things for myself and as gifts for family.

This display was more what I expect from a flea market — old stuff that the seller no longer has a use for. Might as well make a few bucks by unloading it at the flea market. And as a customer, you might just need that beer stein on display just in front of you. A real German bier stein might set you back $100-$200 (could be a lot more) — but here is your opportunity to pick up one for only $15.

This vendor was selling furniture and I did like their china cabinet. Too bad the light was too harsh for photography. You might have liked it too.

More knickknacks. It is interesting that some of these cut glass and colored glass pieces have become so popular. My mother had some that were originally prizes at a carnival but are now collectors' items. Some of them reside with one of my sisters. I think.

I am developing a theory about the knickknacks offered at flea markets, including the giant flea market called "The Internet". It appears to me that the appeal is that "I remember that from when I was a kid". For instance, my generation grew up with Campbell's soup — chicken noodle or tomato were the staples in our household. As an adult, I rarely eat their soups but as soon as I saw the display, the nostalgia kicked in, and these items appealed to me. Fortunately, not enough for me to get my wallet out.

And another nostalgia item from when I first started shaving. Like father, like son, I began using Old Spice shaving soap in a mug with lather whipped up with a shaving brush. Most guys now use foam or gel from a pressurized can — although the popularity of The Art of Shaving stores and other similar vendors brings me back to the nostalgia aspects of it all.

Perhaps living in Arizona increases the intensity of the nostalgia for items of my youth such as this short sled which is quite similar to the one we shared. I grew up in Maryland and in those days, we got a lot more snow than the mid-Atlantic states get now. We were lucky to have an alley with a nice hill that would give a great sled ride once we packed down the snow. In fact, when we saw this, my sister said something like, "I wonder what happened to our old sled — do you think someone in the family hung on to it?" I did not know the answer to her question — but ah, the memories.

Another memory for me. My dad started out his working life as a carpenter. When I was growing up, he had graduated to electronics but he still had many of his old tools which he taught me how to use. These are auger bits for a brace (a tool in carpentry having a crank handle and a socket to hold a bit for boring). The advantage of these bits is that they cut a very smooth hole with a simple hand tool. During the days when my dad was working as a carpenter, all the work was done with human-powered hand tools. And, yes, he did teach me how to use these too.

Woodworking generally does not require extreme accuracy but metalworking does. These are micrometers. When accuracy greater than or equal to 0.001" is required, the micrometer is usually the tool for the job. My dad did not have any of these that I recall. However, we did use them in metal shop when I was in high school.

These tweaked a bit of interest in my mind (although I didn't even check the price) but what would I ever do with them? Photography and computer programming do not require physical measurements. Still, it would have been fun.

Last for today is a display of oil lamps. In the old days, people would use these for illumination. My great-grandfather's house was built prior to electricity and indoor plumbing — the house was retrofit later for those modern conveniences. When I was growing up, electrical service was not quite as reliable as today and we had some oil lamps just in case we lost power. Some of you might still have one. In my home, we just have flashlights and spare batteries.

To be continued...

Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc. — www.bdavidcathell.com