Swimming with the fish / Nadando con los peces

La versión en español está después de la versión en inglés.

Today’s photos are simply a couple I came across in some old albums. We scanned the vast majority of our photos and tossed the originals before we moved to Spain. Still, we arrived here with 22 photo albums. I should finish the job before the photos fade and discolor beyond redemption.

The photo above (of me practicing for the Olympics) was taken July 1963 in the Pocono Mountains in Pennsylvania. It was one of only two times my mother (The Dowager Duchess) agreed to stay in a cottage with a kitchen. She said, “What kind of vacation is it for me if I still have to cook and clean?” She had a point. Dale is just visible at lower right.

The photo below was taken in Dusseldorf, Germany after Christmas 1973. My niece was born in November and my cousin Sheree and I went for a visit. Sheree and I have always been close. I was 19 and she was 16 — but she was a lot more mature than I. We had spent time with my sister and brother-in-law and then took the train to Dusseldorf (about an hour away) to meet my best friend (and roommate) at the time. We weren’t long in Dusseldorf — just enough time to go out drinking and souvenir shopping. I’m holding a hand-carved Koi fish I bought in an antique store. Why? I have no idea. I also bought two beer steins. I had a collection (until we moved to Spain). We then took the train to Brussels where we stayed with my roommate’s parents for a while before flying back to New York.

Around my neck is my goldfish carved from an olive pit. (Maybe I had a thing for goldfish.) I paid $1 for it at the Brooklyn Museum. I bought that sweater with Dale the year before at Marks & Spencer in Durham, England. She chose the color. The memory triggers are fascinating. Oh, that’s my real hair. It had been much longer. I completely forgot I had those sideburns.


Las fotos de hoy son simplemente un par que encontré en algunos álbumes antiguos. Escaneamos la gran mayoría de nuestras fotos y tiramos los originales antes de mudarnos a España. Aún así, llegamos aquí con 22 álbumes de fotos. Debería terminar el trabajo antes de que las fotos se desvanezcan y se decoloren irremediablemente.

La foto de arriba (yo practicando para los Juegos Olímpicos) fue tomada en julio de 1963 en las montañas Pocono en Pennsylvania. Fue una de las dos únicas veces que mi madre (la duquesa viuda) accedió a quedarse en una casa de campo con cocina. Ella dijo: “¿Qué tipo de vacaciones son para mí si todavía tengo que cocinar y limpiar?” Ella tenía un punto. Dale es apenas visible en la parte inferior derecha.

La foto de abajo fue tomada en Dusseldorf, Alemania después de la Navidad de 1973. Mi sobrina nació en noviembre y mi prima Sheree y yo fuimos de visita. Sheree y yo siempre hemos sido cercanos. Yo tenía 19 años y ella 16, pero ella era mucho más madura que yo. Habíamos pasado tiempo con mi hermana y mi cuñado y luego tomamos el tren a Dusseldorf (a una hora de distancia) para encontrarnos con mi mejor amiga ( y compañero de cuarto) en ese momento. No estuvimos mucho tiempo en Düsseldorf, solo el tiempo suficiente para salir a beber y comprar recuerdos. Estoy sosteniendo un pez Koi tallado a mano que compré en una tienda de antigüedades. ¿Por qué? No tengo ni idea. También compré dos jarras de cerveza. Tenía una colección (hasta que nos mudamos a España). Luego tomamos el tren a Bruselas, donde nos quedamos con los padres de mi compañero de cuarto por un tiempo antes de volar de regreso a Nueva York.

Alrededor de mi cuello está mi pez dorado tallado en un hueso de aceituna. (Tal vez tenía algo con los peces dorados). Pagué $ 1 por él en el Museo de Brooklyn. Compré ese suéter con Dale el año anterior en Marks & Spencer en Durham, Inglaterra. Ella eligió el color. Los desencadenantes de la memoria son fascinantes. Oh, ese es mi cabello real. Hacía mucho más tiempo. Olvidé por completo que tenía esas patillas.

Author: Moving with Mitchell

From Brooklyn, New York; to North Massapequa; back to Brooklyn; Brockport, New York; back to Brooklyn... To Boston, Massachusetts, where I met Jerry... To Marina del Rey, California; Washington, DC; New Haven and Guilford, Connecticut; San Diego, San Francisco, Palm Springs, and Santa Barbara, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Irvine, California; Sevilla, Spain. And Fuengirola, Málaga..

24 thoughts on “Swimming with the fish / Nadando con los peces”

  1. Great photos! I love seeing snapshots from years past. I can’t believe you had 22 photo albums! I thought my dad took a lot of pictures but we didn’t have anywhere near that many.

    1. Steve:
      Nope, we HAVE 22 photo albums and they’re sorted by where we lived at the time. Boston years, DC years, San Diego years… We had so many more. I don’t even know how many there were. We had to peel apart plastic sheets from the sticky backed pages and then carefully peel off the photos as well. Then there were the brittle pages from ancient albums. What a project. Thousands of scans.

  2. I like your long hair, but I prefer the current Mitchell. I like the carved goldfish, too. One whole dollar? That was a long time ago.


    1. janiejunebug:
      I bought that olive pit in the early ´70s. I lost it when a rambunctious kid (I was a camp counsellor) accidentally pulled it off and it went down a floor drain (with a much too large opening). I was heartbroken. I immediately went back to the Brooklyn Museum but they didn’t have them anymore. I’ve even looked online with no luck.

  3. Were you modelling yourself on Tiny Tim or Ronnie James Dio at the time of the second photo? Jx

    PS Marks and Spencer in Durham? You really have travelled to some far-off and exotic locations, haven’t you? 😎

    1. Jon:
      I looked like Tiny Tim or Ronnie James?!? It’s not a great photo, but I think I need a drink!

      I’ve even been to Marks & Spencer in Darlington.

    1. Jim:
      And I had a whole lot more than that. I miss it but I don’t. I’m sure you understand.

    1. Frank:
      We always lived near the beach, so I was content with that. The idea of going away with my cousins and aunts was my idea of hell. Fortunately, it was never done.

    1. David:
      I remember the vacation being pleasant. And the trip to Germany and Belgium was wonderful.

  4. Cool photos — but I thought the correct New York expression was “swimming with the fishes”?!

  5. I see a bird, not a fish. You were a real cutie, but I like you better more seasoned. Still a cutie, though.

    1. Deedles:
      On close-up it had fine goldfish detail. Unmistakable. That wasn’t a great photo, but I like me better seasoned, too. Thanks.

    1. Walt the Fourth:
      When I look at all that hair, I don’t really miss it either. It’s so much easier now.

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