Friday nights

I was looking for a photo from Dance Class to add to this post. (I am about to get ready to dash off for our Friday night dose of laughter, learning and fun.) What I found was a photo from a year and a half ago and by the look of it I was at least a stone and a bit heavier than now – so that is good news and bad news at the same time. Good news because it means the 2:5 way of eating is gradually making its mark; Bad news because it means there is no photo to add.

So here is Herself. . . . . . . . .  my excuse is that she doesn’t approve of Fridays. We leave in our dancing attire and she sits and howls mournfully. Yes – Really. Real howls. We walk down to the Community Centre and can still hear her all the way. Thankfully, she has stopped by the time we are on our way back two hours later.  Harrumph! That’s all I can say.

B2013 Mistypheasantwatch


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Three in a row

B2014 BookdrivingoverlemonsEvery so often I get an offer from amazon that I find hard to resist. Their publicist or perhaps their computer churns out a book I like the look of for 79 pence. This time there were three in the series.

The original book was published in 2001 the sequel, – A parrot in the pepper tree was 2002 and the third – The Almond Blossom Appreciation Society, came out in 2006.  I loaded them onto my trusty kindle all and once and thoroughly enjoyed all three.

The author seems to have had one of those lives that make you wonder what you have done with your own. From being the original drummer with Genesis, albeit for only seven months, to sheep shearing in Sweden, his reminiscences roam far and wide whilst being anchored all the while in the mountainous part of Andalucia in Spain. In other words the books are escapism – big time, and all the better for it.

Chris Stewart has an infectious sense of humour, which together with his eye for detail make the reader warm to the people of the mountains as well as the agriculture and animals. His tales of the parrot had me laughing out loud. So I thoroughly recommend them for anyone who enjoys the vagaries of country life, the infinite wealth of human nature and the story of subsistence farming in Spanish style playing out over twenty years.

And by the way, amazon did well out of me because the third book was normal price, but long before then I was hooked.


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Where have all the ordinary sizes gone?

Don’t worry – this is not about super-sized human beings, it is about the quest for a medium sized bottle of shampoo. Why not an economy one? Because it is to fit into my toiletry bag when travelling. This is an on-going hunt, where the treasure is seemingly unavailable. On our travels I visited a Boots Extra store – two aisles of hair products and all either ginormous or minuscule. It seems that customer choice has been limited.

It has to be said that my antics produced some puzzled and even alarmed reactions. Note that I had already three small make-up items in a rather large shopping basket. I had confessed to a Sales Assistant that my rate of using up cosmetics was rather slow as I only used make-up once a week. (For Dance Class.) She seemed surprised, but stopped trying to sell me more. Maybe she thought I was too past it for dancing. However, I digress . . . . Back to the two tiers of hair accoutrements.

The first problem was that a) shampoos and conditioners for each manufacturer were side by side; also, liberally sprinkled in among them were oil treatments, anti-frizz controls, dry shampoos and various other concoctions.  b) the print was so small that it was easy to muddle up the product. Secondly, I was distracted by the sheer range of treatments on offer. In the end it was a case of staggering to the checkout and admitting defeat.

And no, I never found the ideal bottle of shampoo.

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Scots Pine

There is nothing quite like a walk in a forest . . . . . . . . .

B2014 Scotspinewoods

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Special moments

No photo-shoot of the afore-mentioned digger as the weather turned to torrential rain. HBTW and Son #2 kept at it for most of the day; despite the mud they achieved a commendable clearing-up operation, though it meant having 2 skips nearby for taking rubbish.

We have had a few days of whizzing round Scotland, encountering some special moments along the way:

  • A walk in a Scots Pine forest.
  • Wandering along a sandy beach
  • Cappuccino and a scone at a harbour cafe
  • Autumn colours in trees and bracken
  • Fungi
  • Being in a hot tub under the stars – tracking satellites and spotting constellations
  • Having a spin in a performance car

These are the things that make life enjoyable and special. Of course, now we are back to the reality of jobs to do around the house and mail to catch up with. And in no time at all it will be the end of the month, clocks changing and winter setting in. Hmmm . . . perhaps I should just content myself with a wander round the garden admiring the roses that seem to have bloomed on and on this year. Or of course there are the photos to download to the computer. And then there is the mooc to get back to.

Or even another cup of coffee and a sit, contemplating the joys of being retired and fit enough to enjoy the ordinary things that make life so special. A kind of prayer in its own way.

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Happy Camper

Tomorrow HBTW should be a Happy Camper. He is getting to play . . . . . Sorry I mean “use” a small-sized digger. There is an area at Son #2’s small holding that is to be transformed into a boat park. Photo opportunity if the sun shines.

It reminds me of an occasion some 40 years ago when we had hired a similar machine whilst living in thee Outer Hebrides.  It was for digging out a driveway – however, the temperature that day was nearly 100 degrees in old money. Come to think of it there should be an old photo somewhere. I wonder if Himself was wearing the ubiquitous striped trunks?

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Wonders of creation

This is a resource from the mooc I am currently doing. It is amazing.

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Autumn already

B2014 CommunitygardentreesI can hardly believe that all this time has gone past without regular posts. The summer has whizzed past and earlier illness has made the later weeks all the more precious. This post is a way of re-connecting with the online part of myself. And there are many questions in my mind about the point of blogging, especially when instant communication is here with facebook and twitter. I did register for the latter, but found the constant beeping an intrusion and too much pressure. Perhaps I will come to that later.

The Referendum about Scottish Independence has taken up a lot of my time and attention. I found myself caught up in the desire for a fairer and better way of leadership as opposed to government – something which is shared by people on both sides of the campaign.  Overwhelmingly, people in Scotland now are united in hoping for the change that has been promised by politicians based in London. So much has been happening in the world, and we are subject to instant knowledge of wars and violence in a way that previous generations did not have to face. Does it make us more involved or liable to turn off?

A blessed Autumn to you and yours.


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Today is a beautiful gift of a late summer day – warm sunshine . . . . . .   a day for being out in the countryside. Somehow it seems appropriate to make some decisions, one of which is that I expect to start regular posts after Referendum Day (September 18th).

In the meantime, here is a reminder of what Misty looks like – as if you could forget.

B2014 Mistycommunitybeach

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Is it going to happen?

Yes – something new is going to happen and there should be activity on the site soon.

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