Monday, March 31, 2008

Walking by water

We parked the car by the waterfront on the way home Saturday after shopping. The tide was coming in and the waves were just beautiful to watch. As always the camera was nearby so l jumped out and took a few photos (as seen on slideshow below).

I’ve been thinking about gathering some pictures together to put on the blog sidebar as a view from my corner of the world so will start with this one entitled ‘W*est Bay’.
It’s a sunny day so l’m away to get some work done outside – not just gardening but a bit of Spring-cleaning for the mind also.

Friday, March 28, 2008

A breath of fresh air

Last night wee S had a birthday party to attend so hubby and l used the time to go buy some fish & chips and sit by the loch nearby. The air was mild, the water calm and the view was breathtaking. We watched as one ferry sauntered up into the loch to tie up for the night and leave its ripples to wander ashore. Mountain, water and refelctions are good for fish and chips and a wind down.
This is a haven for seabirds and we saw Cormorant, Little Gull, Eider Duck, Herring, Black Backed, Black Headed Gulls, Common Gulls, Wagtails, Oyster Catcher and Curlew in just a few minutes - and of course always a gang of Crows lurking around for anything dead or alive.
The War Memorial in the picture above was erected in the 1920s but now stands precariously close to the water. Over the years it has become a familiar landmark on the shores of this loch- it would be sad to lose. It is a national crisis that so many war memorials are falling in to disrepair and their origin and purpose not passed onto the young. In years gone by streets had their own wall mounted memorials to the war dead of the community. Most are now gone and names and events forgotten.
Enjoy the pictures on the LINK HERE and have a great weekend all!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

No snow?

click HERE to make your flake.
I watched as little flurries of snow danced past the window yesterday. A bit late in the year with Easter now past but a refreshing pause nonetheless. Little spirals spinning softly, pulled this way and that with winds breath. So beautiful that l just had to stop and listen - a blanket of quiet and then it was gone.
Thanks to my sister-in-law for the poem below- sent this morning. She took my post above and chopped out the prose to find the poem. How nice was that!


Little flurries fly past the window,
spirals spinning softly
with winds breath pulled this way
and that, a blanket of quiet
then gone.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Circle of Life

By this time last week the mid-week blues had certainly set in- now seven days further on and l'm doing much better. In fact it has just started snowing again outside which is a refreshing change to the grey days common to this time of year. Last week the sky was grey and low, the buildings and sea just another shade of.. you guessed it..grey. Even the wee birdies sat on the chimney opposite seemed colourless. But this week has been different- although cold it has been clear and cloudless- a nice start for springtime! Over the weekend l spent many hours in the garden. Spring a time of rebirth, a time of weeding and planting and in that a renewed hope. l wrote about this last year - about what l believe is an 'internal seasonal clock'. You can read that old post HERE.
As with everything though, there are balances and during this past month a few blogging friends have suffered the loss of someone they love. This is close to my heart and still a tender subject so when l heard a poem on television last week l knew l had to blog about it. I’m not sure if it is a poem or even part of a play but the words certainly spoke to me. I believe it's about the loss of a loved one - written by a man from Glasgow.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Easter Rambo

Yesterday wee S came home from school with a note that read, “Easter bonnets tomorrow please.”. Given that l was in the midst of cooking dinner and that Scout club was at six l had to use what was available – certainly no time for shopping!
So l hunted around the house opening cupboards, junk drawers and scarf boxes (in a blind panic) as you do. I found an old black cap that wouldn’t be missed and some plastic coloured eggs. I stood there looking at these and then it occurred to me -why not make a nest!
I was a woman on a mission as l went up the back garden with the secateurs. After a bit of glue gunning and burning myself lots l thought it looked pretty good, that was….. until l walked into S’s class this morning and saw what the other kids were wearing. I need some scary music now.
The classroom was festooned with ribbons, chicks and eggs - the colours yellow and pink were prevalent everywhere!
My heart sank for here was my wee lad looking like something out of Universal Soldier – what was l thinking!! Poor wee S, will he ever forgive me?

Below: wee S standing with head down. Oh dear.

I think some of us are just born to be different!

UPDATE: Just in from the school pick up and my little 'soldier of fortune' is fine.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Just a little nutty- and l don't mean the seaweed

This past week l’ve been on an emotional rollercoaster – crying myself through most of the weekend! I haven’t slept well either, feel tired all the time and quite fragile (if that makes sense). The illness in February really knocked me for six and l am still recovering from it- either that or l’m just going a tad loopy- just a tad.
Yesterday we decided to go to a beach not too far from the house but remote enough and quiet. We walked along the stretch of sand, climbed up into the hillside with wee S and sat on the rocks by the water to soak up the sunshine. Unfortunately the batteries in my camera went and so l missed out on some beautiful scenery snaps but perhaps that was a good thing because it gave me the opportunity to just sit and relax.
This morning after taking wee S to school l stopped off at the Health Shop and bought some magnesium/calcium/zinc tablets recommended by my darling sister. These with some fish oil capsules should have me up and running in no time.

Magnesium is just as vital to bones as calcium. It is also vital for muscle function, energy production and for the nervous system.
Heart problems, high blood pressure, fatigue, mental confusion, muscle cramps, PMS, insomnia and high stress levels.
Seaweed, wholegrains, nuts, tofu, dried fruit, fish, eggs and dark green vegetables.

This afternoon l’m headed across the water to take my mum to the hospital for a heart check-up. We’ll probably do some food shopping afterwards so I’d better go and look through the cupboards to see what’s needed. I wonder, do l have any seaweed left?

Dear Doctor Rhyanidd.
I tried your Celtic nutty flavoured sea lettuce with a trace of tangy iodine; vinegar smothered on dulce fish pie and rounded rockweed yogurt smoothie this past week for lunch specials and guess what? They all made me sick! I was pretty cheesed off as it took several weeks of collecting the ingredients from various shores. I also wore through two pair of wellies and had a near collision with an aggrieved sheep that was after the same piece of Kelp! I even sprinkled the smoothie with the dried wild nori meal, specially dried on standing stones by large-breasted women during the full moon, as you suggested. I wish now l just had a bowl of porridge oats instead! Help!

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Local Landmarks Disappearing

The government needs to recognise that if the local post office closes, often the last shop in the village closes as well."

Charles Hendry, Conservative post offices spokesman

The first letter T in the word stationary hangs askew, as if it itself feels spiritless about the shop’s closure below. Yes, it’s official- our wee post office around the corner has been closed. A sad sight now, sitting there with empty windows, empty card stacks, empty shelves and cleared off counters. Gone are the parcel weighing scales and friendly smiles with cheerful antidotes for rainy days.

Sadly many of us have found ordering online and direct banking easier. When we do choose to go out it tends to be at a larger shopping complex where we can get everything done in one pit-stop ~ food shopping, gasoline, fast food, postal services, etc.

I will miss that wee post office- now just another shopping space lying dormant on an even emptier street. A street that once had its own thriving community ~ a butchers, bakers, grocers, tailors, shoe shop etc. My dear neighbour, Maurice (87yrs) used to live above the old sweet shop on that road and can vividly recall the hustle and bustle of days gone by- a yesteryear that l would prefer to what is there now.

What is happening to the wee lady who digs around in her purse for the right change; penalised if she doesn’t use direct debits instead for paying her bills? Does she have to trudge miles further now to collect her pension or post a parcel? Will l be that old lady one day struggling against a government who cares more about the ‘viability’ of a product or institution rather than taking the socially responsible role and realising that these post office buildings are not just some shoestring operation but more often the heart of a community?
Certainly an era is passing before us and l am not so sure that it is for the better. Whether it is the closure of a rural schools or sub post offices - once these institutions are gone they are gone forever. More of our cultural history and our heritage passes away and community becomes yet more degraded.
Post office closure plan protest

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