Friday, 25 November 2022

Phosphatodraco … Happy Thanksgiving …

 

It was blustery here, overcast and rather dismal while I thought about Thanksgiving times … and that poor turkey – mind you - here they'd only have a few more weeks before Christmas turkeys get into the shops …


Featured yesterday in Wikipedia



I was wondering if this magnificent creature could have been an early progenitor of the turkey -  you are or will be eating?




Apologies – I just was bemused by the image … let alone its name Phosphatodraco … and don't usually get down about 'life' beyond these shores … but it has got to me – I count my blessings, but am inwardly weeping …


Clade of Pterosauria


The vandalism, barbarous demeanour, rude, crude uneducated, uncivilised people of this world – who raid, maim, kill, herd into isolation – has been and is  awful …




yet what has really triggered my mental distress has been the pillaging of all things cultural from Kherson and its Art Museum … I cannot get my head round this dismembering of a country's art collection …



A room in the Kherson Art Museum
prior to the looting

having recently given three 'talks' on Russian art pre 1917 … and following the artistic story on into the early Stalin years to 1932 … I couldn't believe the repeat horrors I heard were happening in Ukraine.



War is not a subject I've been interested in – I intensely dislike it … but this has struck at my heart strings … I so admire the Ukrainians in this instance, and all, particularly refugees, who do not have freedom, yet who strive, hope and expect their worlds to improve …




I know it's Thanksgiving when we count our blessings, while to cheer myself up and get back to simpler things …





These scented narcissi from the Scilly Isles are available for sending out in time for those early parties – just sent some to the family …



The islands about 25 miles from the mainland

The Scilly Isles always remind me of my mother and times in Cornwall … happy memories of earlier times … when our parents had been through World War Two to give us our freedom … that so many of us live today …



Apologies – I'm not usually this morbid, and especially here on the blog – but this once … here's one that's different to my usual posts.



I know this is a wild one - but I'd rather
have this for my Christmas dinner!


I just hope a Phosphatodraco has not landed on your dinner table? I am looking forward to my Christmas turkey a month today!





With thoughts to one and all …


Hilary Melton-Butcher

Positive Letters Positive Stories

24 comments:

David M. Gascoigne, said...

You know, Hilary, there is something especially disturbing about the pillaging of art. It seems in some ways to be the ultimate desecration. We cherish beauty and tout great art and uplifting music as signal accomplishments of western civilization (and I believe that to be true) so it is perhaps not surprising that, when we revert to barbarism, the sacred is rendered profane. This war in Ukraine shocks me in more ways than I could ever have imagined, yet the conduct resulting from it hardly surprises me at all. The violation of women and of art is a standard component of war. It never changes and I am immensely sad. As for Phosphatodraco, rest assured that it did not appear on my table, nor ever will. In sympathy and solidarity - David

Hels said...

I have been watching and reading a great deal about cultural objects being taken from their country of origin into the dominating country. I realise the pillaging of all things cultural from Kherson and its Art Museum is from war, not from colonial theft, but the impact on the devastated people's collection is exactly the same.

This week I was thinking about the theft of precious objects from China, taken by the European colonial powers in the 19th century. The curators were still crying about their lost heritage.

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
There is no apology required for airing your disturbance at the state of things just now, Hilary - for it can be quite hard to 'see the light' at the moment. That said, it is also important to be grateful for those glimmers that lift us out of our dwalm - such as the flowers and thought of candles keeping away the darkness... YAM xx

Janie Junebug said...

Phosphatodraco seems to be the kind of name that could come out of the Harry Potter books. I have been very sad about Ukraine these many months as the war drags on.

Love,
Janie

Joanne said...

Thanksgiving is a time for reflection. Small view-my family is so fortunate. Big view- overwhelming world troubles. War, guns, climate, etc. Tough to digest.

Good post and I am thankful for blog friends like you. Cheers. (Our turkey was extra yummy).

Elephant's Child said...

I share your concerns. And your horror. And wonder 'what next', while fearing that I will hate the answer.

Anabel Marsh said...

The worldis all too depressing at the moment. I share your feelings.

Liz A. said...

I thought all the terrible war atrocities were a thing of the past. And then Ukraine... Have we learned nothing from the past?

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Normally I am anti war, but I am 100% behind the Ukrainians' defense of their homeland against this terrible invasion. I think they've become an inspiration to all countries who value their freedom.

Yes, what a weird little fellow that turkey ancestor was, if indeed that's the case. My husband and I are vegetarian (although we do eat dairy products and seafood), so a turkey never graces our table.

Meanwhile, I share your dislike of looting (and defacing) art. I worry about climate change, but I've been aghast at how some protestors have attacked art museums, who are not the real culprits of global warming.

And, I don't find your post morbid at all. The whole value of positiveness is that there is sunshine despite the rain, not that there are never dark clouds.

bazza said...

What's happened to Ukraine especially resonates with me because one pair of my grandparents came from near Kiev, (as it was then). They always referred to it as Russia because fifty years ago Ukraine was not an everyday term. I hope you soon return to your usual cheerful self Hilary!
CLICK HERE for Bazza’s deliberately devastating Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ David - thanks for your thoughtful comment - the chap now in charge, whom Putin brought in, is a savage thug, who will do anything - chemical, nuclear et al to do the worst to other human beings ... as happened in Syria ...

Yes - so true ... 'when we revert to barbarism, the sacred is rendered profane'.

It is just appalling - I couldn't imagine these horrors being endorsed and perpetrated by a, so-called as we now know, brutal leader of the world - then their cultural heritage of a country being pillaged and stolen. I so agree with your thoughts here ...

I'm glad that Phosphatodraco didn't fly in to Canada ...

@ Hels - I've tried not to go to the colonial era - it's in the past, though I do realise it's very relevant ... theft from a country, or slavery ...

In today's age at least most cultural artefacts are recorded on the internet, so they can be seen ... and many are available for viewing in Museums - when will that art collection be available again ...

I understand your point of view ...

@ Yam - it's just I don't like airing my views much! Usually my thoughts don't materialise ... I prefer a neutral world - with my own views held in place.

Yes - thank goodness for the positives we can hold close to us in our fortunate world, however difficult it is, those narcissi will be much enjoyed: Thanks for the understanding ...

@ Janie - I know there was a Draco - I think ... a constellation ... dragon - which explains a Persian illustration I found - which I didn't use. I'm horrified at what that country - Ukraine - has been subjected to since February ... so so sad ...

@ Joanne - you have Thanksgiving ... we'll be coming up to Christmas soon ... when similar thoughts will apply.

Oh yes - I can certainly be thankful for the blog - for friends, for stimulating ideas, thoughtful comments, interesting thoughts ... and thoughts of Turkey a couple of weeks away yet!

@ EC - that 'what next' ... sadly we know based on that Serpent-Thug Surovikin in charge of inflicting as much cruelty as possible in Syria ... I dread what else the Ukrainians will have to withstand ...

@ Anabel - thank you ... it is so depressing ... why does man inflict so much damage ...

@ Liz - so did I, yet Afghanistan continues on, and now this - some of us have ... but bullies, power grabbers and thugs haven't apparently ...

@ Elizabeth - lovely to see you here ... and yes I so agree Ukraine has the absolute right to defend their country ... I agree the Ukrainians are being inspirational.

Delighted you think that Phosphatacraco is 'a delightful 'fellow''! I eat everything - but not much meat ... lots of fish, too much cheese!

I know you bring up other aspects re defacing art, or glueing themselves to roads ... doesn't seem to do much for any cause - except cause distress to others ...

Thank you re the positive aspect ... fortunately the sunshine will shine through - but as you say dark clouds will be there at times in our life ...

Cheers and thanks to you all for your supportive comments - all the best - Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Bazza - I just checked and you weren't there!!

How interesting that your grandparents came from near Kiev ... and yes that was the norm wasn't it ... Russia was all Russia as we thought - but no its history is enormously broad - so many cultures woven in ... over the last 1200 years or so ...

I have a newly published history of Russia to read, as too Orlando Figes book 'Natasha's Dance' ...

I'd love to chat to you at some stage about your grandparents' history - must be fascinating ...

Cheers and thanks for letting us read some of your background - with thoughts ... Hilary

Jacqui Murray said...

That looks like the new image of a Velociraptor--scientists now thinking they walking on the wing 'elbows'. Interesting animal!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Thanks Jacqui - yes ... I was bemused to see the Phosphatodraco - but enjoyed its name ... draco being dragon in Persian. Our evolution or rather Evolution of life on earth is fascinating - cheers Hilary

Sandra Cox said...

Since I'm a vegetarian, turkeys are safe from me. Wishing them all Presidential Pardons, which one or two birds receive at Thanksgiving every year in this country.
It's difficult to remember the good right now, with all the barbarism practiced in the world today, but good is out there alive and well.
Cheers, dear Hils.

Pam Lazos said...

I listened to the John Oliver segment on how many pieces of art the British museum has from other formerly colonial countries and was flummoxed because they don't want to give them back. Go to youtube and watch the piece on museums. Hope you have a happy day, Hilary.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

That is horrible about the Ukrainian art. I didn't realize that was happening, but sadly I'm not surprised, considering the other atrocities. A dark time, for sure.

ashok said...

Very informative post

Rhodesia said...

Theft from any museum or art gallery I find disturbing. The killing of animals I find repulsive and for what? Some people have a very odd idea of what they call fun.
Never seen a Phosphatodraco before. no wonder you were bemused.
As for the Ukrainian war, Putin is off his rocker, horror of horrors that this is happening in this day and age. What is the world coming to, so many killed and tortured for no reason, and the ones who have escaped have lost so much.
I am just glad that I have lived the years I have and enjoyed the wildlife and the peace that has surrounded me.
Take care and have a good week, cheers Diane

Pradeep Nair said...

Phosphatodraco looks truly out of the world!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Sandra – lucky turkeys … but I quite understand … I often eat veggie. Good is out there – and does rise to the fore. Thank you – I'm fine, but occasionally I felt I wanted to highlight this … I so feel for the people.

@ Pam – I'm not a political animal, though I appreciate the colonial aspects and know the discussions around objects in our museums and art collections. There is a difference, I believe, in today's thefts v those of 100 – 200 years ago … now we know what's what …

I'm glad to see some of the Benin bronzes are being returned … as too other items in places around the world. There are other points to consider too …

@ Elizabeth – the looting from a museum-gallery so thoughtfully put together in the last twenty years … giving Ukraine some of its culture back …

It is as you say 'a dark time' … cruelty at its worst …

@ Ashok – thank you …

@ Diane – Killing of any sort is dreadful … the trouble is – it's not the people who issue the orders doing the work, including the killing – but the people who dictate/command … Putin is indescribable …

I too have to add fortune to my time in life … so I agree with you – we've been lucky to have experienced peace, wildlife in our time on this planet.

That Phosphatodraco looks pretty odd … but being able to walk under the Patagotitan mayorum titanosaur in the foyer of the Natural History Museum next year will be awe-inspiring.

@ Pradeep – he was an early dinosaur (obviously!) - but I just rather liked him!

Thanks so much to you all – we are lucky to be free and able to have a life … Hilary

jabblog said...

It is sometimes difficult to remain optimistic in the face of the awful events we see and read about each day. It truly does make us count our blessings.

Sandra Cox said...

The Phosphatodraco is fascinating looking, isn't it?

Sandra Cox said...

How nice of you to send flowers to your family.