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Sideswipe

“If buying a caravan is the answer it must be a pretty stupid question.”

Quoted out of context but it just made me laugh.

Reading an article by Jay Rayner on what to take to a self catering holiday home, and nodding my head.  Yes to sharp knives, no to glass chopping boards – they are immediately tucked away until we leave*, but in addition to Jay’s list I would propose a tea cosy (never present), and apron (ditto), and extra tea towels because the one they provide is just simply inadequate, plus what do you use when it’s in the wash?  Other items are often thought of just in the nick of late.  The most recent stay in a property was one of the finest ever, but I did have to look up You Tube to find out how the tin opener worked.

 

 

 

*because 1) they are scary 2) they are noisy 3) they are breakable 4) they are just wrong.

Glasgow style

As part of the on-going (and why not?) celebrations of our advanced old age, the 59ers hied to the fair environs of Glasgow on Monday, there to partake in an ethical jewellery making session, using reclaimed materials.  Led by Stefanie Cheong,  we spent a hugely enjoyable day learning how to choose, shape, solder and fashion our own silver rings.  The day passed very quickly as we were fully involved in the creative process aided by copious cups of Earl Grey, and a lunch provided by Diana.  There may also have been cake.   I was genuinely intrigued to see the end products, especially as I have a rep for being fairly maladroit in these situations.  My chums have a bit more flair!  I’m delighted with mine, every aspect of it was of my choosing.

Once I receive a picture of me I will add one in!

Paul and I had been to Glasgow on Saturday, to see Still Game at the Hydro.   We stopped off at the Riverside Museum first, and enjoyed a look round the exhibits, which spark off so many memories.   We were there the weekend it opened., back in 2011.  I posted pictures about it then and noted that everyone who passed the horse drawn hearse was clapping* the (fake) horses’ heads.  Happy to report that the noses of these fine beasts are just about threadbare by now, seems the folk memory of cuddies in the streets runs deep.

*”clapping” is Scottish for showing tactile appreciation of an animal.    “Can Ah clap yir dug, mister?”

Horse
Welcome to the Studio
Caroline prepping for soldering
Diana
Finished products
Glasgow stalwarts

Mulling it over

two White Tailed Sea Eagles in a river on the Isle of Mull
White Tailed Sea Eagles, Mull
MV Coruisk at Craignure
Grass Point pier, Mull
Grass Point pier, Mull
Sheila’s cottage, Isle of Ulva
View of the Isle of Staffa on approach
Staffa approach
Sunset at Treshnish
Beauly Firth from Lentran chalet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A random selection from our trip north,  through stupendously beautiful areas of Scotland.  Car did us well over the longest hauls in particular,  like Pitlochry to Kingussie, and a singularly frustrating tour of the car parks in Fort Bill.  Thanks to the EV community who put meaningful updates on the ZapMap and a shout out to the men we met who are happily touring the west coast to install more chargers.  They also inadvertently told us where to buy a decent breakfast roll in Craignure.  Grudging thanks to CYC Scotland who at least confirmed that the charger at Kilchoan was hors de combat.   More to be uploaded once I figure out how to release the phone pictures from Google photos to the PC.

 

Ironmoulder

Neither my father nor my aunt recalled the name of any foundry in which their father worked.  I have found this detail via Scotland’s People.  See record no. 1920, employee 54.

ScotlandsPeople  (think you have to click twice to see it).

The foundry,  Forth and Clyde and Sunnyside, has an information page here.  It closed the year my Grandpa died, 1963.

As mentioned previously on BTW, he worked in munitions during the Second World War, and did not speak of it. How he coped with the stress of doing that while his son was on active service for six years, I simply do not know.  I think I have mentioned elsewhere that the badge below was given to him, as an essential worker during the First War,  to stop him being challenged by the sort of people who today hide behind a keyboard.

Brass badge worn by people performing essentail non military work inthe first World War
AM munitions worker

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other items he made include the boot scraper, now curated by my sister, and a peever*, which sadly we never found.

 

*Peever – small block of iron, used to play Beds, or hopscotch as the the Southerners would have it.  A gird was chalked on the pavement or school playground, and the players had to hop around the grid, kicking the peever forwards in a prescribed manner.

Less fortunate children made do with a tobacco tin filled with earth.  It fills me with delight to see that the kids in our street are still playing this.  Who’s to say an OAP doesn’t have a wee hop herself if it’s early doors?

Westering Away

Having had the great good fortune to visit many of the Western Isles, I was intrigued to find What We Do In the Winter,  which I will be listening to in order to find out.

Picture below of James GS Black Esq., MA, meeting the  “Duke of Rothesay, Earl of Carrick, Baron of Renfrew, Prince and Steward of Scotland and Lord of the Isles at the 150th Glenisla Highland Games, all at once.”   Note matching socks.  Jimmy plays with the Dundee City Pipe Band.

Jimmy and HRH

Random

So, à propos of nothing, here is a picture of Barbie as Darth Vader.

 

Barbie Doll dressed to look a little bit like Darth Vader from Star Wars
Barbie x Star Wars

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sold by a firm in Dalgety Bay called darksidetoys, found when looking for something completely different.  That might be serendipitous.

A conversation with my cousins recalled this song. it’s great when a childhood memory is corroborated, although quite why I would have fixated on this song is anyone’s guess, when at 6 years old this was my party piece.   Sung with the excellent acoustics of the hall in Shieldhill schoolhouse,  it must have been quite the venue emptier.

Play well

The word “lego” is derived from the Danish words “leg godt”, meaning “play well”.  Really enjoyed seeing these Lego sculptures at Edinburgh Zoo, on a rather close and muggy summer’s day.

All the models were of sea creatures, which brought this tune to mind.  Stick with it for the chorus harmonies.

Eye of Squid
Ray

 

Housekeeping

Everyone who knows us will be aware that we have had a veritable social whirl this summer, with two family weddings and a Diamond Wedding for family friends.  I have thought long and hard about putting up pictures of these events, and have decided to refrain.  The main players in these events do not have social media profiles, therefore it’s a point of philosophical debate as to whether I am morally entitled to share  their images.    It’s also really difficult to select just one or two from hundreds.  So, I shall thank Nick and Beki for the wedding in Norfolk and Emma and Thierry for the wedding in Brussels.  Both days were the occasion of much joy, some tears, and the chance to blether, laugh and catch up.   Congratulations also to Eveline and Eddie on a notable anniversary.

Wall sconce, Hotel de Ville, Brussels
Hydrangea, Domaine Al Poudre, Belgium
Oxnead Hall gardens
Allium, Oxnead Hall
Peacock and crow, Prestonfield House