A 'Swenglish' journey through family photos, notes and postcards from the early 20th century.


Sepia Saturday: Going Out for Coffee

“… there is usually a tea shop or cafe, coffee lounge or milk bar ready and waiting for you to break your journey. And whilst you take a breather, why not get your camera out and take a quick snap?”

In my childhood, this is what was usually meant by going out for coffee:

Kaffeutflykt_sidaPage from my childhood photo album (drawing made by my mum).

My grandmother Sally especially, loved to pack a picnic basket and literally “go out” for coffee. And the more people the merrier… 


The people present here were me and my parents (I start with me, as I’m sure I was the most important, at least in my own eyes, at the time!); my grandparents and their dog (my grandfather must have been behind the camera for this photo), my grandmother’s sister and her husband; and three more friends from my grandparents’ generation - two sisters and a brother who lived together on a farm. Possibly this spot was close to their place, or I can’t quite see how we could all have fitted into two cars! (Somehow I don’t think the sisters and brother had one of their own. But I could be wrong about that. After all, I was only two years old at the time...)


My grandmother is the one wearing a scarf round her head, and drinking coffee… Real cups, mind – no plastic thingys!

See more coffee-related photos at Sepia Saturday 170.


Veckans inspirationsbild för Sepia Saturday är en café-bild.
När det i min barndom talades om att “gå ut” och dricka kaffe så handlade det dock inte om att gå på café, utan om att antingen sitta i trädgården, eller packa en picknick-korg. Min farmor Sally tyckte mycket om att göra “kaffeutflykter”, och i fotoalbumet från min barndom finns flera bevis för det. På en sida har mamma kompletterat fotona med en teckning av de vanliga tillbehören. Ofta var också farmors halvsyster Hildur och hennes man Olle (som bodde nära farmor och farfar) med på dessa utflykter. På de sista fotot/fotona här är också tre goda vänner till farmor och farfar med, som vi brukade hälsa på ibland – två systrar och en bror, som bodde tillsammans på en gård.


  1. What a charming way to go out for coffee. No doubt you were indeed the most important guest at the coffee outing -- just the perfect lump of sugar to sweeten the pot.

  2. Of course a coffee picnic! Weren't you an angelic looking two year old?

  3. I think I like that kind of picnic - most civilised!

  4. I'm so glad you provided the close-up views so we could see your grandmother sipping her coffee and everyone doting on you. Looks like a beautiful collie your grandparents had.

  5. That's the way we did as well. It never occurred to us to go in a cafe. And it was coffee that the adults drank. Even though Mum and Dad preferred tea it was usually coffee when we picnicked because it kept better in a flask and didn't stew. But occasionally Dad would take the old methylated spirit primus stove and the kettle in his rucksack and make fresh tea. That was real fun and a real picnic!
    (Do folk put a 'k' in the past tense of picnic? I see picnicked and picniced but I have always used the former. Is this a British /American English thing, I wonder?)

    1. We used to have something like a primus stove too, used on holiday travels. For just an afternoon's outing from home they probably usually just brought a flask, though.

      I'd write 'picnicked' with a k, yes. Google seems to suggest it too. I always end up in doubt because in Swedish we spell it picknick to begin with! :)