I used to be indecisive…

…but now I'm not so sure


Friday letters

Dear fingernails,  Please stop growing so quickly!

Dear microwave,  Well, you didn’t last very long.  I would have hoped to get a bit more use out of you before you gave up.

Dear black boots,  You sound quite different now that you have been re-heeled.  The business-like click, click, click as I walked (and which you had right from the start, not just because the heels were wearing down) has gone now which is a bit of shame, but at least I don’t announce my arrival quite so far in advance now.

Dear TV schedulers,  You are at it again – changing things round for the sake of it when they were working perfectly well.  You also seem to have a talent for putting decent dramas on at the same time as each other.  I know it’s so easy these days to record things, or to watch them on a catch-up service, but sometimes it is nice to watch something when it is actually being shown.

Dear potato peeler,  I’m still enjoying the novelty of having a peeler that works so efficiently.  A couple of readers have wondered what you look like, so here is your moment of glory.



Friday letters – the chilly-ish edition

Dear weather forecasters,  Well, it hasn’t quite been the white-out blizzard conditions that you forecast for my area, although it is a bit on the cool side and ice has had to be scraped off cars this morning.  I think you will find that there are a lot of very disappointed school children in many parts of the country because you had raised their hopes that the snow was going to be bad enough to close their schools.  I know that you tend to give the ‘worst case scenario’ picture so that there is not a repeat of the occasion in mid October 1987 when we were told, categorically, that there was no storm on its way and there then followed one of the worst storms on record, but you really over-egged it this time.

Dear supermarket vegetable departments,  Why are turnips/swedes individually wrapped in shrink-wrap plastic these days?  They already have their own skin which we can remove before cooking.  None of the other large veg/fruit is individually wrapped – or are you just breaking us in gently?  Are we soon going to get individually shrink wrapped potatoes, leeks, carrots, bananas etc?

Dear skin and nails,  How much moisturising do you need?  I seem to be using endless amounts and you still feel dry.

Dear fellow bloggers,  I’m slowly catching up with you all – you seem to have been very busy writing posts since the beginning of December and there’s so much to read!

Dear Princes Square, Glasgow,  I thought your decorations were lovely – much better in the flesh than a photo can show.




Glen Finglas Reservoir

During the festive break in Scotland, we had one sunny morning when the rain stayed away and the gale force winds had finally subsided, so we grabbed the opportunity for a quick outing.

Despite having visited the area on many, many occasions over the years this was the first time I had walked to Glen Finglas to look at the dam and the reservoir.  Glen Finglas is in the heart of  the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park and in the mid 1960s a dam was built at one end, the valley was flooded,  and a reservoir created to serve the city of Glasgow.  There is parking near the small tea room in Brig o’ Turk (sadly closed over the winter, so there was no opportunity for a warming hot chocolate after our exertions) and from there the walk to the dam is an easy stroll.


We have a view of snow covered Ben Venue in the distance as we set off along the road.



We pass an information board which tells us about the poet, author, social thinker and artist John Ruskin and a group known as The Glasgow Boys.  Click on the picture to read all about it.

p1020283In 1853 Glen Finglas was the setting for a  scandal surrounding Ruskin and the artist John Everett Millais – a scandal which rocked the British art establishment and Victorian society and which involved a painting and an affair…  You can read all about it here.  Our walk takes us past the red-porched house in Brig o’ Turk in which Ruskin and his wife probably stayed during that summer.




Just above ‘Ruskin Rock’.

As we approach the dam, our surroundings change from rugged woodland on either side of the road and the tumbling waters of the river to manicured grass – it is quite a contrast.



Following the path round to the left we make our way up onto the dam itself and are afforded beautiful views of the reservoir and surrounding hills.


If you enjoyed this walk and have some energy left, you might like to join  Jo’s Monday Walks.


Friday letters – the hello 2017 edition

Dear 2017,  You’ve crept up on us all of a sudden – how did that happen?  However, now that you are here, let’s hope you are a happy and healthy one.

Dear London New Year firework display,  I only saw you on the tv, but you were amazing.

Dear new potato peeler,  You are a marvel, a wonder, a life-changer, a fantastic thing, a superbly crafted item, a …  Ok, I will stop there, but you get the picture.  I had no idea that peeling a potato or vegetable could be quite such an easy process.  I had been struggling along with a couple of peelers which I thought were the best that I could get, but clearly not.  You, the Lakeland Potato Peeler, have revolutionised my vegetable preparations and I’d like to thank you.  I wish I had been given one sooner.

Dear garden birds,  After a very quiet spell it was great to see you out in force again yesterday, even though the food supplies were looking a little low.

Dear camera,  I seem to have lost the knack of using the zoom to good effect.  Either that or you were just having an off day yesterday when I tried to take photos of the birds in the garden.  I hope normal service can be resumed soon.



Friday letters – the final 2016 edition

Dear Christmas weather,  All I can say is that Storms Barbara and Conor didn’t prevent any of our travelling or activities over the last week, but they did make some of our driving a little bit stressful.

Dear Christmas food,  Why are there so many irrisistable treats?  I think I might campaign for all Christmas treats to be made of marzipan by law and that way I would not be tempted by any of them!

Dear Scottish cyclists,  In general you seem to be quite a sensible bunch and wear bright clothes, meaning that we can actually see you well in advance, which is always a bonus.  Perhaps you could have a word with your fellow cyclists where I live.

Dear Royal Scottish National Orchestra,  Thank you for an excellent concert last night at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall.  The Space Spectacular, conducted by the very appropriately named Jean-Claude Picard, was packed full of music ranging from Star Trek and Star Wars to Holst’s Mars and Jupiter and was great fun.

Dear fellow bloggers,  I’ve had very little opportunity to read or comment on your blogs in the last week, but I’m hoping to catch up with you soon.


Just to prove that the skies were not grey ALL the time, here is our view of snow covered Ben Venue.





Friday letters – the Christmas Eve eve edition

Dear traffic cones,  I heard on the radio this week that some of you are being removed from the roads in readiness for all the traffic that will be travelling over the coming week or so.  I think this just goes to prove my theory that you are not all actually being used for roadworks some of the time – if you were in use for roadworks you couldn’t be moved.  I hope that you have a nice break wherever you are stationed and that you behave yourselves!

Dear weather,  I am not impressed.  That’s all I have to say on the matter.

Dear people,  The shops WILL open again after Sunday – you do not need to panic buy.

Dear Christmas tree,  Your decorations are looking good.