Friday, September 28, 2007

Freshers, Fundraising & Freeze

Just sitting here for a few minutes waiting for the tradesman from Scottish Gas to appear. Yesterday we had a problem with our connection between the thermostat and boiler so our radiators were not coming on when needed. The weather up this way has turned quite chilly and without the heating on it feels like we’ve skipped autumn and jumped straight into winter!

I decided to go with the Council job after all and so have been busy filling out forms for Disclosure Scotland checks, etc. I am pleased to say that l am also working ‘fill-in’ and volunteer hours for the other job too so in a way managed to marry them both together.

During this past week hubby and l became committee members at the Parent Teachers' Association (PTA) for S’s school. It will be good to get actively involved in the fundraising events throughout the year.

Both D and M have finished with Freshers week and are now down to serious study. We are heading up on Sunday to visit, drop off some food parcels and set up M’s Wi-Fi connection.

D got a weekend job with a bank, which will help support him financially while at university. This past fortnight he had to go through four different stages of interviews including a math test. The numbers of applicants for the post started at over 20 and dwindled down to 14, 7, 4 etc. l remember D calling me after the last interview- he felt he had done his best but didn’t think he’d get the job as the others seemed more qualified. The next day however he got the call to tell him that he made it through! I am so proud of him for not giving up, for travelling to all the different places and sticking with it. The bank that D is going to work for won the 2006 awards for ‘Best bank in the world’- beating off competition from Canada and India. High speed Internet banking with a Scottish accent - what more would you want.

Well l need to run and pick up a wee laddie. After the October holidays wee S will be in school full-time. I am glad now that things are changing and moving on - better to keep busy.
Have a lovely weekend all.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Diagnosis: Paralysis by Analysis

Symptom: You’re looking for work. Find two places, hand in CVs, go for interviews, hear nothing and then suddenly on the same day get offered work at both!

THINK… l’d love to be able to ‘marry’ both these (part-time) jobs together. Unfortunately FIND… they both require hours on a Friday.

So now l have Paralysis by Analysis- utterly bogged down in details. Nicest atmosphere? Strongest personalities? Hourly wage? Permanency?

DECISION: Church or Council? Now there’s a choice!
Service often overlong – service often under par!
free music

Kate Rusby is a British folk singer who comes from Yorkshire tha'knows. l have many of her CDs and would love to go and see her in Concert.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

A last wave to the QE2

This piece of history left the Clyde this evening.

Wee 'S' and l rushed out to see it sail by as did most other people from the town including my mother and brother.
The QE2 is a tribute to Scottish boat building – one of Britain’s best.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Inveraray Town

‘S’ went into school today proudly wearing his badge from his tour of Inveraray jail. It says that he was ‘pardoned for good behaviour’- long may it continue!
Below are two slideshows- the first is of Inveraray town. This small Argyllshire town stands along the shore of Loch Fyne, utterly picturesque with it’s whitewashed stone homes underneath the green mountainside . I love the view across the water as we drive around the Loch and as it unfolds until around the bend is the promontory of Inveraray.
This is an old and ancient lochside place of fishing and of travellers.

The jailhouse that we visited (second slideshow) is of Georgian architecture - as are the other buildings that line the main street- this uniform shape and colour all add to the character and you can see why, with its history and romance this place draws visitors. Along the main street is The George Hotel, an old Inn where we had lunch among old beams and Scottish memories.
My favourite feature in Inveraray is the Celtic cross that stands down near the pier. Yesterday as l stood looking at it with wee ‘S’ an older gentleman came up to us. He told me how his mother’s mother had passed the story on of how the cross was brought here along Loch Fyne during the Ice Age. I can’t see how he figures this timescale as the town origins date from around 1453- perhaps it was just a very, very cold year. Or perhaps the cross was made much earlier, perhaps on Iona and it dates to around the Stone Age- you never know. Anyway he seemed like a nice old bloke and kindly pointed out the Latin inscription to me on the side of the cross itself - I’d love to find out what it says.
You can see Inveraray castle peeping out along the shoreline on the old postcard with the cross (above). This postcard is from 1902.
You may note that wee 'S' took his beloved 'Billy Bear' on tour with him- a day to remember indeed.

Monday, September 17, 2007

The dust settles

Just a short post tonight to let you know l'm still blogging. These past few weeks have passed so quickly and l have had no time at all to get to my computer. My oldest two have left now for university and it has been an emotional and busy time.
We moved 'D' up to his flat over two trips as he begins his second year doing Mechanical & Electrical Engineering. He is currently looking for a wee job to help with expenses and l worry how he will manage to juggle his time between full days of course study and work. 'D' is a very likable lad and has moved into a flat with his pals for this year- they have had a couple of ‘moving in parties’ and l can only hope that these will now settle down as the year commences.

My daughter 'M' started her university on Monday of this week and moved into her flat on Wednesday - another two ferry crossings! This is her first year of nursing and she is just about to start Freshers' Week. She has quite a few flat mates already: four French girls, three Scottish lads and one Irish lad. 'M' is also in the top flat (same as her brother) - lots of stairs but worth it for the views. I love this picture of her.

Today l had to head around Loch Fyne to the town of Inveraray so l took my Mum and wee S along for the ride. This time we took the tour at Inveraray Jail - a place we’ve so often passed by. Wee S really soaked the whole experience up and it was lovely to watch. Mum and l enjoyed shopping at the Inveraray Woollen Mill afterwards. I took loads of pictures so will post a slideshow tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

The walk to school and back

A hearty breakfast and a brisk walk- the best way to start the day! I'm just back from taking wee S down to his school. The weather is good, a bit cooler now but it was nice to hear the birdsong. So now l'm in fine fettle and plan to get caught up with a bit of house tidying; well that's the plan anyway.
Yesterday l went swimming and did 30 laps- when l got out of the pool my legs felt like jelly and l needed a quick pick-me-up (almost off the floor!), so l headed up the road for a cup of tea with some much needed sugar.
The slideshow below is of my morning walk to S's school and back. The garden area in front of the large church is known locally as 'Hangman's hill', named for obvious reasons. I use the walk home to give myself a quick paced workout- uphill most of the way! The church is undergoing some structural work at the moment as you can see with the scaffolding. That's my lovely daughter 'M' wearing the green T-shirt- she was just saying 'Cheerio' to her pals down the town as l walked by.
Ok, one more cup of tea and then l'll get something done.

Porridge by Spike Milligan

Why is there no monument
To Porridge in our land?
It it's good enough to eat,
It's good enough to stand!

On a plinth in London
A statue we should see
Of Porridge made in Scotland
Signed, "Oatmeal, O.B.E."

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