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Greengrocer on wheels
Lens: FA77mm Camera: K-1 Photo Location: The Netherlands, Frysl‚n ISO: 100 Shutter Speed: 1/320s Aperture: F5.6 
Posted By: Fries, 05-19-2020, 02:52 PM

When the Covid crisis struck us and everybody was as much as possible in lock down I realized two local businesses with a really old-fashioned business model provided the community with an opportunity to stay at home even more. One is selling bread and other related stuff from door to door out of a van and lives in my village. The other one is a greengrocer on wheels and lives in another village nearby. In these times where you can order your groceries online most of these tradesmen have disappeared. Hell, even before that it was a dying occupation. And they are local guy's that don't drive all around the province.

So I decided to tell their story on the regional station I work for as a journalist. I am specialized in covering stuff about nature but I could not let this opportunity slide. The few that are lucky enough to understand the Dutch and Frisian languages can see and read about it over here: Venten door De Lege GeaŽn in coronatijd: bakje met geld staat buiten klaar | Omrop Frysl‚n

For everybody else... I have a portret of Bernard, the greengrocer.



Last edited by BigMackCam; 05-19-2020 at 03:43 PM. Reason: Category updated at member's request
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05-19-2020, 03:04 PM - 2 Likes   #2
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That is a nice shot and it brings back memories. Back in the mid-1950s there was a baker and green grocer on wheels who came around where we lived. There was also a fish seller and there may have been a butcher. That was common. The fish sellers continued long after the others had stopped. But in the 1960s we had a milkman who still did his rounds with a horse-drawn cart. He would run from house to house with his bottles in a crate while the horse would plod along to the next place and stop where the milkman would return to refill his crate. The milkman would have been very fit!
05-19-2020, 03:26 PM - 3 Likes   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by PJ1 Quote
That is a nice shot and it brings back memories. Back in the mid-1950s there was a baker and green grocer on wheels who came around where we lived. There was also a fish seller and there may have been a butcher. That was common. The fish sellers continued long after the others had stopped. But in the 1960s we had a milkman who still did his rounds with a horse-drawn cart. He would run from house to house with his bottles in a crate while the horse would plod along to the next place and stop where the milkman would return to refill his crate. The milkman would have been very fit!
Great stories from both posters.

I remember the local milkman, Glen, having a horse drawn cart and doing the exact same thing....the horse would plod along to the next house pulling the milk cart and stop and wait for the milkman.

Eventually in the later '50's the horse and cart were replaced by small Divco trucks, where the milkman had the option of standing up and driving to his closely spaced stops.

https://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=13&cad=rja&uact...-db1c8yGvBe_Zv

One of our dogs ...a border collie mix...would go to the top of the street and wait for the milkman at close to the time the milk truck would come to our street. The milkman would drive along, then stop, and say to our dog, 'wanna ride, Smokey' and Smokey would jump into the passenger floor area, no passenger seat was installed in the truck.

The dog would sit patiently looking out the open milk truck door (two piece folder door) until the milk truck arrived at our house, and then milkman and Smokey would walk up our front walk.

Back then , milkmen, etc. weren't just delivering a product, they were an integral part of the neighborhood and a friend to every boy and his dog.

Les
05-20-2020, 12:47 AM - 1 Like   #4
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The milko in Westport NZ 1960's name was Jesse James... no kidding !
Family visit to rellies there and early morning wake-up to assist with 'road clearance' for benefit of the vegetable garden...shovel and heap of steaming dung later.. :-)

05-20-2020, 01:31 AM - 2 Likes   #5
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Interesting... this is the way it's always been done here in the Highlands.

To this day will still have a mobile fish man, library and a bank on different days of the week.
05-20-2020, 03:46 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by PJ1 Quote
That is a nice shot and it brings back memories. Back in the mid-1950s there was a baker and green grocer on wheels who came around where we lived. There was also a fish seller and there may have been a butcher. That was common. The fish sellers continued long after the others had stopped. But in the 1960s we had a milkman who still did his rounds with a horse-drawn cart. He would run from house to house with his bottles in a crate while the horse would plod along to the next place and stop where the milkman would return to refill his crate. The milkman would have been very fit!
Really rewarding to see how this photo triggers these kind memories. I don't see any of those 'self driving' cars yet matching they way that horse served that milkman. Thanks Peter!

QuoteOriginally posted by lesmore49 Quote
Great stories from both posters.

I remember the local milkman, Glen, having a horse drawn cart and doing the exact same thing....the horse would plod along to the next house pulling the milk cart and stop and wait for the milkman.

Eventually in the later '50's the horse and cart were replaced by small Divco trucks, where the milkman had the option of standing up and driving to his closely spaced stops.

https://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=13&cad=rja&uact...-db1c8yGvBe_Zv

One of our dogs ...a border collie mix...would go to the top of the street and wait for the milkman at close to the time the milk truck would come to our street. The milkman would drive along, then stop, and say to our dog, 'wanna ride, Smokey' and Smokey would jump into the passenger floor area, no passenger seat was installed in the truck.

The dog would sit patiently looking out the open milk truck door (two piece folder door) until the milk truck arrived at our house, and then milkman and Smokey would walk up our front walk.

Back then , milkmen, etc. weren't just delivering a product, they were an integral part of the neighborhood and a friend to every boy and his dog.

Les
Les, that is a great story! Thanks for that. My generation hasn't seen that kind of thing although I once saw a horse and cart roaming around Dublin many years ago. When I grew up we had this: File:SRV-wagen.jpg - Wikimedia Commons filled whit daily groceries. And we had one family in the village that earned their money selling eggs from door to door. I alway's felt sorry for the young kids that helped their dad doing that.

QuoteOriginally posted by bobD Quote
The milko in Westport NZ 1960's name was Jesse James... no kidding !
Family visit to rellies there and early morning wake-up to assist with 'road clearance' for benefit of the vegetable garden...shovel and heap of steaming dung later.. :-)
Ah, a milk delivery with extra benefits!

QuoteOriginally posted by Kerrowdown Quote
Interesting... this is the way it's always been done here in the Highlands.

To this day will still have a mobile fish man, library and a bank on different days of the week.
That is pretty special. Why are they still there?
05-20-2020, 04:30 PM - 2 Likes   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobD Quote
The milko in Westport NZ 1960's name was Jesse James
Reminds me of Benny Hill - "Ernie" who "drove the fastest milkcart in the West" … that is until "a rock cake caught him underneath his heart" when he took on Ted who drove the baker's van. The song was somehow relevant back then.

Last edited by PJ1; 05-20-2020 at 04:36 PM. Reason: Posted too soon
05-21-2020, 12:11 AM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fries Quote
That is pretty special. Why are they still there?
Cos we are a little remote and don't have those facilities locally.

05-21-2020, 03:40 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kerrowdown Quote
Cos we are a little remote and don't have those facilities locally.
That makes sense!
05-21-2020, 03:54 AM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fries Quote
That makes sense!
So now that we have your approval... we can carry on then?
05-21-2020, 07:17 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kerrowdown Quote
So now that we have your approval... we can carry on then?
I have a feeling my approval does not tip the balance in any meaningful way.😉 I was just curious and your answer was a logical explanation in line with what I suspected to be the reason yet did not know.
05-21-2020, 07:29 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fries Quote
I have a feeling my approval does not tip the balance in any meaningful way.😉 I was just curious and your answer was a logical explanation in line with what I suspected to be the reason yet did not know.
That's an awful long reply, to what can have been said in one word used around here... "sound".
05-21-2020, 08:39 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kerrowdown Quote
That's an awful long reply, to what can have been said in one word used around here... "sound".
He, I am not a native English speaker!😉
05-21-2020, 10:38 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fries Quote
Les, that is a great story! Thanks for that. My generation hasn't seen that kind of thing although I once saw a horse and cart roaming around Dublin many years ago. When I grew up we had this: File:SRV-wagen.jpg - Wikimedia Commons filled whit daily groceries. And we had one family in the village that earned their money selling eggs from door to door. I alway's felt sorry for the young kids that helped their dad doing that.
Glad you liked it.

When you mentioned young kids helping their dad sell eggs door to door. It provided another memory. Back in the late '50's (and '60's) as a typical, red blooded Canadian boy, I played hockey (defense) for the local community club team.

There weren't any sponsors back then and again I was about 9-10 years old at this particular time. The team and parents raised money for hockey jerseys. We did all sorts of things, but mostly they were buying food products of one kind or another...and then going out and selling door to door during evenings and Saturdays.

One experience I recall very warmly, was a fund raising event in which my parents did a lot of the organization.

They bought a number of huge flat packages -holding 4 dozen ) of donuts from a local bakery (got a deal ) and my dad and I loaded them into the back of our '58 Ford Ranchwagon...which was a huge station wagon. We folded down the 2nd row passenger seat for even more cargo room. My mother had bought some packs of brown paper lunch bags and we drove off to meet the rest of the team at a pre determined spot one early Saturday morning.

About 5 members of the hockey team, including yours truly...went door to door, knocking on doors...politely...and asking the occupants if they were interested in buying fresh, glazed donuts- baked early that morning. We would explain that we were raising money to pay for our hockey Jerseys and invariably transactions were completed on many a doorstep...the idea of a freshly baked glazed donut or two...early Saturday morning was hard to resist, especially for the man of the household..

My mother organized things like a genial Sergeant-Major. We would run to the door, ring the bell/knock...recite our spiel....collect our order regarding how many donuts and my mom would be sitting on the dropped tailgate of the big Ford wagon...tongs in hand....filling the paper bag with the number of donuts, per that order. Repeat.

It was a lot of fun, people loved the product and the timing (figured out by dad)...service was almost instantaneous and we raised a fair amount of money towards our hockey jerseys.
05-22-2020, 02:58 PM - 1 Like   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by lesmore49 Quote
Glad you liked it.

When you mentioned young kids helping their dad sell eggs door to door. It provided another memory. Back in the late '50's (and '60's) as a typical, red blooded Canadian boy, I played hockey (defense) for the local community club team.

There weren't any sponsors back then and again I was about 9-10 years old at this particular time. The team and parents raised money for hockey jerseys. We did all sorts of things, but mostly they were buying food products of one kind or another...and then going out and selling door to door during evenings and Saturdays.

One experience I recall very warmly, was a fund raising event in which my parents did a lot of the organization.

They bought a number of huge flat packages -holding 4 dozen ) of donuts from a local bakery (got a deal ) and my dad and I loaded them into the back of our '58 Ford Ranchwagon...which was a huge station wagon. We folded down the 2nd row passenger seat for even more cargo room. My mother had bought some packs of brown paper lunch bags and we drove off to meet the rest of the team at a pre determined spot one early Saturday morning.

About 5 members of the hockey team, including yours truly...went door to door, knocking on doors...politely...and asking the occupants if they were interested in buying fresh, glazed donuts- baked early that morning. We would explain that we were raising money to pay for our hockey Jerseys and invariably transactions were completed on many a doorstep...the idea of a freshly baked glazed donut or two...early Saturday morning was hard to resist, especially for the man of the household..

My mother organized things like a genial Sergeant-Major. We would run to the door, ring the bell/knock...recite our spiel....collect our order regarding how many donuts and my mom would be sitting on the dropped tailgate of the big Ford wagon...tongs in hand....filling the paper bag with the number of donuts, per that order. Repeat.

It was a lot of fun, people loved the product and the timing (figured out by dad)...service was almost instantaneous and we raised a fair amount of money towards our hockey jerseys.
Those are memories that I think are character building. One learns a lot going from door to door in such a way. Apart from the jerseys did you get a donut too? It must have been temping to steal a bite!
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