In my part of the world the days are getting longer and the weather’s getting warmer. The birds are singing, the squirrels are chirping and my cat’s conniving to escape through the open front door. It’s almost time for t-shirts, shorts and flip flops and my pale feet and hands are looking forward to some sunshine. Which brings us to our FFC topic.
For the next two weeks the Friendly Friday Challenge is to post articles inspired by HANDS & FEET.
This challenge can be either or easy or hard, straightforward or indirect. It’s as easy as sharing a selfie of your latest mani-pedicure. Or a story about a feet inspired adventure. Or maybe a feature on your latest hand-made delight. Hands AND feet. Hand OR foot? Your choice. Use the topic as a starting point and see where inspiration takes you.
Lately, I’ve been watching a film noir series set in Singapore 1964. One of the things I like about the show is its accurate depiction of daily life. Even though it’s set sixty years earlier, I recognise the familiar ambiance of kopitiams (coffee shops), hand painted street signs and ‘black & white’ houses. The full authenticity struck me in a scene where Sam (an Australian ex-pat living in Singapore) enters a residence. He pauses at the door way to remove his shoes.
This is a common habit of every Singaporean, Chinese and Asian home I’ve ever visited. It is a simple courtesy to not tramp dirty shoes into a private home. Some places even provide house slippers for guest to wear … although if you’re a normal size Westerner, the inevitable Size 5 slippers may not suit.
The courtesy extends to places of worship, past and present. I remember having to remove my shoes (and socks) for every pagoda entered in Bagan. In one particular pagoda, I was grateful for the added security of having my bare feet to ‘feel’ my way up an internal stairwell. It was narrow and dark with uneven steps that were crumbling and sometimes missing. At the top of the pagoda was a breathtaking view. Eventually though, I had to go back down.
Have you ever noticed how much people talk with their hands? In some cultures, hand gestures are as much a part of language as words and facial expressions. Did you know that for the hearing impaired, facial expression is as much a part of sign language as are hand gestures? And that just as modern language is filled with slang and colloquialisms, so too is signing?
Being unversed in signing, I didn’t appreciate any of this until I saw this video. Set to the music of JP Saxe’s “If the World was Ending,” two actors simultaneously sign the words and sentiment. Very quickly, you’ll see that the hand signs are not identical and the actors’ expressions emote much of the song. For viewing, I recommend turning on captioning.
I look forward to seeing your post inspired by the topic HANDS & FEET. You have two weeks to publish your response to this challenge, after which Amanda will pose a new one. Remember to give me a pingback to this post, so that I can find you. Full instructions on Friendly Friday can be found here.
Toronto, Canada. April 2021