So I gave you a few extra days to rethink, but I have to  congratulate the last commenter, Daffy, on being right. It is the ruins of Dunstanburgh Castle, and not Lindisfarne (lovely as it is) as it is further north. We have never been over to Lindisfarne as we have always just missed the tide, which covers the causeway.

One place (plaice) worth visiting near there is Craster, a tiny fishing port with a marvellous smokery and fish restaurant. The above was a simple offering we had one day….no bottle of vinegar available!

We stayed at the old coaching inn, the Mason’s Arms, in Rennington, again quite close,….well worth the journey to stay in the marvellous outhouses converted into suites.  British accommodation and catering can be tremendous!

So I award DAFFY a personal driver to Northumberland, a slap-up meal at Crabster, and a weekend at the Mason’s Arms….and off course, a framed photo, on the wall, of her favourite Angel!

Photos of Arran

Return to BrodickGoatfell mountainHoly Isle, ArranAn interesting total image

Curlywurlygurly asked about photos of Arran. Left daughter to get some but the above will give a flavour

Brodick Bay             Goatfell

Holy Isle                 Interesting geometric shapes



A coincidence?

On Saturday, I went to the Isle of Arran, off Ayrshire, on an idyllic day of sunshine and warmth. I was visiting a local church briefly, whilst the Young Lady of the House, and Daughter went to the few local shops, and we got back to the boat slightly early.

Having a few minutes to spare, we visited a local Art Gallery. Speaking to the owner about churches and I mentioned that we went to St Mary’s Cathedral in Glasgow. His immediate reaction was that he had a print of an un-usual view of Kelvin Bridge and a large church, Lansdowne Ch of Scotland, and our Cathedral in the background. I immediately snapped it up, and it now has pride of place beside the print of the little Church in Bearsden which has played such a large part in our lives.

Isn’t life strange that I had to go so far away to find it!

Where is it?

My photo, showing the Green Park Hotel in Pitlochry, suddenly disappeared!…..leaving me headerless. So it gave me the chance to put up this new one, which I still use on my computer desktop.

I’m not looking for an answer as to where my old Header went, but let’s see who knows their geography. All I will say about this new one is that it is off the Northumberland coast of England.

So go on, face the challenge….who can win the ‘I KNOW MY GEOGRAPHY’ award.

P.S. If anyone has stolen my old header, could they please return it!

To paint or to plant?

…..that is the question!

Today in the west of Scotland we have had a beautiful day….slightly windy but sunny. I know the garden needs worked-on, but what did I do…..? Instead of being out in the fresh air, I decided that the inside window-ledges needed varnishing….but you can’t  just do that….mastic had to be removed, water-marks cleaned, the accumulated dust from winter winds to be removed from the windowframes, and then all washed.

Luckily I had started on the smallest spare room, but even then preparation work had to be done, spare varnish removed and then all the frames washed. Whilst that was drying off, I thought I would clear out a built-in wardrobe and paint inside. So you can imagine by the time I had been to B & Q and got the work in hand, and eventually getting tea, I was slightly ‘knack…..d’.

The room is a mess, but first coat has now dried in the cupboard and killing the rather strong green (!!!)paint which was on before……so starting to get somewhere, but I am now on the treadmill… and the Young Lady of the House is constantly being told to put new jobs ‘on the list’. So if i am not blogging between now and the beginning of the year….you will know the number of jobs on the ‘list’ has never declined!

Anyway…it has been a gorgeous day….sun going down now but still bright…..and the garden will just have to wait!!….sorry Flighty!…..also Daffy, I imagine the Angel looks well today, if the weather is good.

Old?…not me!

Yesterday I reached the age of ‘thrice-21’, which sounds less old than 63. I got lovely simple presents, such as a pair of posh blue walking boots from Daughter (will I ever wear them out at my age?), a modern shirt and after-shave from Son (to try to keep me trendy?), and from Young Lady of the House, a six-CD collection of Scottish comedy and two books of humour (to try to keep me sweet?).

We didn’t go out for a meal, but had a glorious Indian carry-out (good typical Scottish food, then?) and a blether. We are seeing more of both of them just now, and it is great sitting down as four adults without having to tell them to ‘take their elbows off the table’, or ‘don’t gulp your food’, or ‘eat your greens’.

I feel for those with young ones at the table, who have to be fed, or who insist on feeding themselves (or the dog), or who can effectively put food on walls, floor, even ceiling, with a well-placed fist into the middle of a dinner-plate.

Never mind, they do get better….I suppose the next thing is when I become cantankerous and may well end-up emulating the above-mentioned children!

Until then I will try to behave at table and act like a grown-up…..which I suppose I am!

‘I believe in Angels’

This is one of the lines from one of the last songs in ‘Mamma Mia’. The Lady of the House and I went to see it last night. We had been given the tickets by Son and Daughter as a wedding anniversary present at the end of last year, and last night was the booked performance.

We went early to the Scottish SECC, as we do not like to be arriving late. Within 10 mins of the starting time about one third of the seats were un-occupied, but it then rapidly filled-up, and there was a full-house.

An original story uses the musical works of the two male ABBA members, and has been so well constructed that it is difficult to believe that the play did not come first with the words following on.

The musical content is of course superb, and mostly passes the ‘Old Grey Whistle Test’ with flying colours. Some of the playing was VERY LOUD, so if you are of a nervous disposition, be prepared to be surprised by sudden noise! The choreography is exciting and keeps your attention, as there is always something going on at all corners of the stage.

The audience (even the groups of what-looked-like line-dancers) were well behaved but enjoyed it. The most astonishing thing was the age-range from relatively-young couples to grannies and grandpas. No cultural or musical divide here.

There was one small incident when someone taking a photo was escorted from the auditorium. Whilst I am sure it is not un-common, and there are warnings about use of cameras, can I make a suggestion. To many people the entry cost is quite high (and so is the programme at £6), and they might like to have a small momentum of the evening, via a photo. I appreciate the copyright problems, but surely it would be possible, during the final dance or curtain call, to allow the taking of a photo. If folk knew that the opportunity would arise to take one or two photos at the end it might stop the surruptitious attempts at flash-less photos.

Despite that, it was a wonderful evening with great music, well-played by the 7-piece orchestra.


Back to the walking

We had our first real walks of the season last weekend. Before that, we went with Daughter for lunch to a little restaurant called the Applebank Inn, in Larkhall. I had not been there for over twenty five years and was not really surprised to see a considerable number of new houses around it. However, there is still the view over the River Avon, and the stone flags and walls give an authoratative charm to this very-old pub.

Suitably refreshed, we set off to New Lanark. This is a World Heritage Centre, and was set-up by mill-owner Robert Owen as a good workplace and living area for his workers. He provided education and Church facilities, and if you want to see some more of it, click on www.newlanark.org .

By the very nature of needing a steady flow of water, the whole area lies in a deep depression, and is approached by a steep hill on foot……and this means that the same steep hill has to be negotiated in reverse after the visit!   As if this was not enough, we then decided that we needed more exercise (memories of Daughter walking Kim her dog come to mind!) so off to Lanark Loch, for a walk on the flat. The wintry wind became evident in this more exposed area, and repaired to the local hotel for a warming coffee.

The back and knees have been complaining since, but at least we have started…..the problem will be continuing the walking!