Juggling life through a bi-polar lens. Sometimes up, sometimes down. Mostly trying to tread water in the middle. Creating a likeness to a normal life. Whatever "normal" is...

Tuesday, 27 November 2007

Polish workers, cats, trees and one Polish word.

An old polish gentleman came to our door last night. He showed us a hand-written card to explain that he was a deaf-mute and was selling his drawings door-to-door. We don't need pictures- we have several, framed and unframed, still unhung from when we moved in 4 years ago. Still, me and my partner exchanged glances, perhaps a wink, and decided to help if we could. Any reluctance on my part disappeared when the pictures came out of his bag...

They are A4 size, too big to scan completely, but here are some details:

He had a few dozen. My partner prompted me to choose. I chose ones I could see were hard to draw! Not that the others looked easy, I don't mean that. But I've tried these two subjects!

I can't draw trees at all. I think I get bored. The first few twigs look OK, then it turns into a hairy doodle.

As for the cat picture, OK, it might be a bit too twee to actually hang on a wall (?) but I've found that kittens and ALL tabbies are the hardest ones to draw. With all those lines, it's easy for them to look 'flat'. I get confused, whilst drawing, between line, detail, shade. I lose track. Is this bit I'm doing a bit of shading, or is it some of the tabby pattern? Sound odd? Give it a go and you'll see what I mean. Maybe. Or maybe this is just me. Ha!

So I was impressed, that's the basis of my choice.

Look at the textures- that blanket in front of the kittens. OK, maybe he put it there because, like me, he can't do paws (if you ever see a picture of an animal standing in long grass, you know you've found someone else with this problem.) But the blanket looks real!

My partner knows British Sign Language. I guess some of it is universal, as they were able to make themselves understood.

I worked in Poland for a little while, back in 1991, and was excited about saying some Polish. When his attention was turned to me, however, I was ashamed and horrified to discover that I couldn't remember any of it. Except the word for "thankyou". But perhaps that's all that was needed.

Isn't it awful that people with skill and talent like this have to go door-to-door? And in the same week, a silly man lost his job as manager of the England football team and was paid 2.5 million sterling to leave his job? The world's mad.

We have lots of people from Poland here in Colchester. Since the EU expanded the other year, lots have come to the UK to work, and quite a few hundred to this town. I hear the language every time I go into town. Last night's experience has shown me AGAIN that it is never too late to learn. Why didn't I keep up the language in the 1990s? Hey ho. I wonder if any of the new Colcestrians has thought of giving Polish Language classes. I think I might enquire at the college when I'm in town this afternoon..............


The Polish for "thankyou" is pronounced "D'yen-koo-yah".


Hip Grandma said...

'And in the same week, a silly man lost his job as manager of the England football team and was paid 2.5 million sterling to leave his job? The world's mad.'
Don't I agree?The pictures were very good.glad you helped him.

Calamity Jane said...

Dzien dobry Helena, jak sie pani miewa?

I love the kitten picture. I wish I could draw, my Dad and my sister are/were very talented artists. me, I'm better with words.

Do widzenia!!

Lynda (Granny K) said...

Oh my! What talent, what patience! I'm glad you bought them. We have lots of polish people working here in the North West, too. They are hard workers.

Helena said...

hip grandma,

Yes! I thought you were meant to be paid for work, not rewarded for failure!


Helena said...

Calamity Jane,

Ohh! Thanks for the reminder!

Good day to you, too, and yes, I do understand! LOL!!!!!!!!


Helena said...


Aren't they brilliant drawings? Must get my pencils out again.... quite impired....