Sunday 20 October 2013


The essay is 99% finished, just a few minor tweaks required. Now that it's almost out the way I feel like I'm released back into normal life! Hopefully, the level of chocolate consumption will drop back down to normal now too, which will be a good thing.

At the end of last week I had an hour long break. I fancied some fresh air, a change from sitting in the library. We're close to quite a few of Glasgow's historic visitor attractions, I decided to go for a wander round one I'd not been to before - the necropolis. Even the name sounds wonderful, it literally means "city of the dead". I seem to recall it being a bit of a no-go area when I was at Uni first time round, however, it seems safe enough these days. Here follow lots of drippy, misty photos, quite atmospheric but not great for the views. I had my new boots on again, it's a bit of a revelation wearing jeans tucked in - it's cosy and dry, no more flappy soggy trouser leg bottoms and chilly draughts wafting up your legs!

Wednesday 16 October 2013

The Thief of Time.

I have an essay to write. I've already spent all of last weekend working on it but I fear that what I've written is not what "they're" looking for. I've also written too much. Before taking it to pieces and re-writing it I decided to procrastinate by sharing some October photos.

I often take my camera with me on my daily trips into town but I've been a little self-conscious about taking photos when so many others can see me. Silly I know. However, I took a different route back to the train station the other day and was stopped in my tracks by a piece of amazing, unexpected and huge street art. Other people were taking photos so I was happy to join in.

A robin for Country Mouse who is still out there somewhere.

 Big feet. The next photo will show you just how big...


 Here's the robin in situ. The little bit of parked car gives a sense of scale.

 Boo! Capercaillie and red squirrel.

 Blue tit (and some scribbles, honestly, some people...)
 Another squirrel, some deer and a fox (and more cars).

 This photo's just to give an idea of the location, the artwork is painted on to the backs of buildings adjoining a car park.

Hedgehog for N (who loves hedgehogs).

 And a worm at the end.

 A little further on and I passed the Duke of Wellington. He's well known for wearing his traffic cone hat (have a look here!), today the horse has one too.

Another new thing for me since returning to Uni - a pair of slim jeans with boots worn over the top. Radical it's not, but it's a big change from my usual bootcut/flared jeans hiding my footwear. The boots (of leather (writing that brings the Velvet Underground song to mind, not really appropriate here!)) were a bargain £49 from Matalan. Some observations on current female student fashion - no one wears bootcuts, it's all skinny jeans (I didn't quite go that far) or little skirts. There is rather a lot of hair around and I'm a little jealous. I keep mine in a bob as it's prematurely grey and I find it easier to dye it when it's fairly short. No, I'm not ready to let the grey show yet, for the simple reason that it's beyond grey - the front roots are white and I'm still "only" in my forties, and early forties at that. People with great facial features and style can pull it off, not me. Anyway, back to the students. They all like to pile their hair up on their heads in funny little messy buns. Interesting. I'd give it a go if I were younger and had more hair. One more thing - they're all much taller than when I was a student first time round. At 6ft I no longer feel I stick out like a sore thumb, at least for my height. There are a few other older people on the course, I don't think I'm the oldest. There are over 700 of us altogether (primary + secondary - some lectures are mixed) so I've not actually met everybody yet...

Now back to some more of the usual stuff, a couple of garden pics...

 The cosmos seedlings I planted way back in May have finally flowered, yay!

 A hoverfly visits.

 More beasties on an anemone which appeared further up the garden.

 The patio, with a pelargonium still in flower.

 Garden snail going slightly rusty.

And to finish, a fly agaric, spotted in the park by N & I after dropping A off at Brownies one evening. It was already quite dark, hence the flash. Our pockets at this point were stuffed with conkers, we'd collected them till we could no longer see what we were doing. A bumper crop this year.

Wednesday 2 October 2013

Robin Song.

I'm back! And it was fine. Thanks to all who left messages wishing me well, I very much appreciated them. I've ended up in a great school with a fantastic teacher and have already taught 4 whole class lessons so I'm feeling much less apprehensive about it all now. We're now back at university for a spell - loads of lectures and tutorials and humungous amounts of reading, I'm wishing I was still at the school!

Anyway, September has somehow zoomed past and it's October already. I wanted to post my September pics to remember that there was relaxation time in there too. Here they are...

First of all, we met up with one of my brothers for 15 minutes at Bowling Baisin, where these pretty ceramic panels are located.

He stays rather far away so we don't get a chance to meet often, perhaps once a year if we're lucky. So why there and why only for 15 mins?

It was on his LEJOG route. I didn't know what it stood for either. He has it engraved on his bicycle bell which should have been a clue - he was cycling from Land's End to John O'Groats. He and his friend did it in 14 days, quite an achievement. (I did take the opportunity to remind him that several years ago I'd already cycled the length of France, though it took us 3 weeks so wasn't quite such a feat!).

Jumping now to my commute to "work". The route is along country roads which climb up and up, then at last as you pass over the very top you're rewarded with this fantastic view...


 Zooming in a little. It was mostly cloudy during my time there. I go back again for a longer placement after the October break and I'm looking forward to getting some clearer photographs then (if it's not too dark already!).

Oooh, now we're in the garden with the cat. She has wrecked her cat flap. I'd locked her out as I saw her prowling around the patio with a mouse in her mouth. A short while later she was getting chased by something and burst through the locked catflap destroying it in the process. I'm surprised she didn't knock herself out! The above photo was taken over the holiday weekend when we had some great weather.

Blue sky and garden sign.

A moshling arrangement (a swimming pool I'm told).

Love this ball, sadly it's a little soft now but it doesn't seem to mind!

Aargh, spider!

Gorgeous sky.

Some school work. I've had them sewing already! I'd found these fabulous pull-up 3-D shapes and used them in my second maths lesson (after covering 2-D shapes in an introductory lesson). We used plastic needles to thread the yarn through, fortunately they're good kids so there was no silly stuff! At the end of the lesson we listened to (and sang, awww!) this song...

I can't get it out my head now!

More gorgeous skies.

At the weekend we went kayaking with some friends at Loch Ard. It's a lovely spot and I took quite a few photos as you'll see. However, they're all from dry land as I didn't want to risk getting my camera wet so they're of before and after the action, not during...

We kayaked out to the little wooded island you can see behind the yacht and had a sausage sizzle whilst there. It was good fun.

Home again, and yet another gorgeous sky.

The next day I took the kids to visit a nearby castle as it was our last chance before it closed for the winter.

The views in this part of the world aren't bad!

Back home yet again.

I really can't belive it's October. As far as I'm aware we've not yet had a frost and the leaves on the trees are not only still there but are remarkably green.

Robins were singing loudly in the gardens round about late this afternoon, a beautiful sound.

Anyway, I've some prep to do for tomorrow, I'm rarely in bed before midnight these days. 'Twas nice to catch up though. Enjoy October! 


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