Tuesday, 7 December 2021

Monday, 6 December 2021

Sunday, 5 December 2021

Dreich Day

 Dreich day.  The picture sums it up.

Saturday, 4 December 2021


So I went to sleep.
I placed my head on the pillow, pulled the blankets up over my head and sought slumber.
By quarter part midnight, or one and a half hours later, I was awake.  
Soon sleep returned.
Then an hour later I woke, my right arm indicating pain, I turned over.
Fortyfive minutes later Iwas awake, I could not breathe, no air.  Window opened slightly to the cold fog outside and I dozed again.
Thirty minutes later I had to turn over again.  
My left leg hurt, pain in the thigh turn back again.
An hour later a slammed door as neighbours mate left for home woke me, and I think half the town also.
I was tired enough to soon return to sleep. 
Then a headache woke me.
Soon it was once again sleep.
Then the arm again gave pain so it was turn over time.
By 3:45 am I was again awake,the other leg had decided cramp was in order.
Five minutes past four and it's off to the loo.
No sleep.
Turn this way and that.
Listen to radio iplayer.
No sleep.
Radio off.
Thoughts crowd in, all bad.
The world and my faults pile up in front off me.
No sleep.
Radio again, nothing worth listening to.
No sleep.
It is five am, the street lights have come on again.
No sleep.
The radio bores me, music does not fit the mood, worries about the day ahead, all false, pile in.
The radio drones on, men crossing the Sahara desert for fun!
Suddenly it is five past six in the morning, cars move about outside.
I cannot return to sleep.
More radio.
Turn this way, that hurts, turn that way, that hurts.
Almost seven in the morning.
No chance of sleep now.
I glance at clock it says 7:48!!!
I attempt to rise.
I glance at clock, it says 8:17!!...
I rise, and for some reason are grumpy all day...

Friday, 3 December 2021

Afternoon Booster!


Another day, another jab!  This time it is the 'Booster.'  This one Boris is desperate for people to have in the hope less die and he does not get the blame if they do.  I suppose with 140,000 dead, 489 while he was having an illegal party, and today a total of 115 children dead, there is enough problems for him to ignore and buckpass to get on with.

So off I hobbled, rushing to get there in time for the appointed hour.  I need not have bothered!  This jab is given by a church organsation, and well organised they are.  However, with one thing and another there was a queue, quite a long queue, all muttering about 'Booked Times' and standing outside waiting in the dark.  Most obeyed and understood, some objected, and those working there were  indicating that they were all volunters giving their time freely for this, which pacified some grumblers.  I suppose we are all so used to having what we want when we want it and not happy to wait. 

I ought to mention that I did not enter either of these public houses, I was just trying the wee camera on night shots, and not very successful sadly.  The blurring shows it is not up to such things but as I want some night shots I may have to try again with the big camera. 
I felt very weary from last weekend on, and I wonder if the Flu jab was responsible?  So I await any reaction to this 'Booster' with interest.  However, after the first Jab I found my immune system improved by it, the terrible long cold that lasted for months has not returned, and I blame the Jab!  So I am happy to have as many as they wish. 

Wednesday, 1 December 2021

Christmas & Parliament

Being the kind and generous person I am, and having been reminded that I am supposed to be 'thrifty' as a Scot, then I am happy to say I have satisfied both these demands by obtaining these 6 bottles of whisky to give to my equally generous friends.  So far they have given nothing!  
As I always say, a promise is a promise, and if I promise a bottle of whisky to someone I make sure they will receive a bottle of whisky.  I fail to see how anyone could grumble.
The big box of nothingness that I send annually to my sister will be posted, I hope, tomorrow and nothing much else Christmassy requires to be done. An online shop for two or three people and that is about it.  Most cards have either gone or have been written and an abundance of stamps remain.  I am ready for when they go up in price again.      
Of course abuse has come my way from those who have not yet begun their shopping.  Tee Hee.  There is no need for me to rub this in, but I do anyway.  
Most men will of course wait until the last few days before working out what they must buy, and are then found asking women friends what they ought to do!  I always suggest they buy her a new iron or a hoover, but for some reason they never work up the courage.     

When I read a man had jumped the fence at the House of Commons my first thought was to ask which MP had tried to escape?   It did cross my mind it could be a Lord from the House of Lords, though most could not jump over a step let alone a fence.  Anyway, all of both Houses are making too much cash to run away these days.  However, it turns out it was merely a member of the public, possibly trying out his right to protest.  His reasons are as yet unknown but after being tazered, handcuffed and led away to a police van (no longer called Black Maria's') he was heard to mutter "My rights!"  Indications are this was a 'stunt' of incredible stupidity, for a reason as yet unknown, and that any magistrate who eventually gets to hear his case will not be impressed with 'his rights.'  
He must understand that amongst the posse of police officers who responded many carried guns, guns that a mad gunmen in the USA would give a great deal to possess.   These officers also know how to use them, had this man appeared violent in response he may have discovered how well they could use them.  
Silly boy.

Tuesday, 30 November 2021

Christmas St Andrews

It was dreich when I forced my unwilling bulk out off bed this morning.  Too tired to think I yet cogitated over the bag lying on the floor with items that had to be posted this morning.  So, after much strife, I forced myself down the road to the Post Office with the young woman who smiles at me.
For most the the past few years I have endured the walk down there rather than face the hard bitten and unhelpful staff recruited from the Lubyanka when it closed in 1989 in the town centre Post Office.  
I learned recently the present town centre has closed and people are advised the nearest is down Panfield Lane.  This is untrue but in case they file into the one I use I will keep quiet about this.
When I first arrived the PO was in what was called the 'Quadrant,' a fancy name for the Co-op.  This was then staffed by Soviet types, personality and heart removed, and led to long queues and occasional opportunities to find bile on my tongue.  Later it moved to another part of the building and only the lass with the 1960's hairstyle remained, new unhelpful staff being recruited.  However, by now I was going down the road to the smile, or just had no money to send anything anywhere and kept clear of the place.
Now 'Quadrant' was not a shop I used much, female dominated department store type of place, and it held a wonderful array of staff who could never be found.  For instance, I looked upstairs in the furniture department for a new stereo some time ago, the chap was loitering at the front as I wandered about looking at things.  One caught my eye, I turned to speak and golly, he had gone!  This was typical of 'Quadrant!'
Then in one of the few occasions I ventured in, Christmas possibly, I noticed the PO had gone, I knew not where.  Later I found it in the town centre, in a small newsagent type shop with a large array of counters and unhelpful staff in the rear.  The queue wended it's miserable way past the cheap toys and papers while the unsmiling brutes demanded to know what was in each package in a manner befitting an Israeli Border Guard.  I had a run in with them also.  Now this too has closed, no reason given.  No profit, no staff through Covid, someone fiddling the books?  I do not know.  So, it is off to the smiling lass who speaks only enough English to get through the day, as do the family who run the rest of the corner shop, never closing being Hindu, and able to compete with the Tesco Express almost next door.  An excellent shop.  I passed over my three items, gasped when she told me the price and she laughed, however I cleverly bought Christmas stamps which it turns out I do not require.
So, almost all the posting is done, one box, still to be found, a card or two and then online ordering for other items and I am done.
Tee Hee, how far on are you?

Considering this is St Andrews Day I felt the weather was very Scotch.  Though warmer than yesterday, I doubted Andrew, while fishing with his brother Simon on the Lake of Galilee would endure such a west wind as was reminding me of my days heading up Ferry Road from Leith.  He may have endured squalls, rain, and snow every thirty years or so but in between he had high temperatures and plenty of time to lie in the sun and forget work.  That did not occur in Leith!
It is difficult to believe those men of Fife accepted the words of single monk in a coracle who landed with nothing but a bag containing Andrews bones (he said) and they named a town after him.  One up on others I suppose but did they not do an internet check?  I suspect now Nigel Farage would appear and send him back from whence he came, wherever that was.  Where Saint Andrew actually died is of course unknown, though legends abound.  For myself I doubt whether it was on or near the Fife coast.

Monday, 29 November 2021

Cold Christmas


It is a pleasure to wake at five O'clock in the morning and find the sun has begun to show its face.  It is not so good when you wake simply because you canny breathe!  The heating on all night, ice cold outside, and inside also, and the air died in the room.  When I eventually ventured through to the real world the bright sun shone wonderfully but the white frost remained on the rooftops and on the edges of the field.  It is still hanging about in the shadows, our first really cold night.  Up north they have snow, falling trees and a warning.  The warning states the weather is bad so people in the South should remain indoors while those up North ought to put on a coat!   About right!

It is also a pleasure to find the postman ringing the bell and knocking desparate to give me my first Christmas box!  It is a pleasure to open this box, unwrap the mountain of needful bubblewrap (well wrapped indeed as any postie was tell you) and find several bottles of liqueurs made from a variety of fruits.  I accidentally opened the Blackcurrant one now and am forced to enjoy it. 
I am not sure these will last until Christmas... 
Facebook:-  MalloryMade
However, I have packed several items for transmission onwards tomorrow.  The cards are almost ready also, and one box for my sister, full of trinkets, chox and rubbish rather than anything wonderful, and that will soon be off also.  I like to post my cards on the 1st if December, well ahead of the rush, ensuring they get there without any trouble, usually.  This also reminds folk to send me something! 
A thought that never crosses my mind usually.  
It is still November!

Saturday, 27 November 2021

Boring, Cold, Saturday

Pah!  So much for weathermen!  No snow of any kind, not even sleet, though it is planned for late afternoon, aye right!  
Instead a strong northwesterly has been blowing icy wind through the cracks in the window frames and forcing me to make use of the old man's heating allowance already.  If the wind came from the west I could survive better, but no, it cometh blasting from the Arctic and is happy to do so.
I forgot to eat properly last night, maybe that is why I felt so bad this morning.  The head was not woken up until I ate dinner, such as it was.  Funny how eating is good for you.  Thus I have just sat here awaiting tonights football.  I wondered if the Flu Jab yesterday was having an effect, the tender area there is quite large for such a Jab, more 'tender' than normal, but I think it was just lack of eating.  

The storm has been the only story in some papers, I note the Tory rags have ignored Conservative Dougie Ross's claiming for expenses while forgetting to enter his £30,000 linesman takings in the Holyrood register.  I suppose to the Tories that is not a problem, more a way of life to them.  The 'Glasgow Herald' however does splash an ex-SNP member as being questioned by police, no charges so far.  Dougie appears ignored.  The rest cast fear about the latest version of the virus, especially as it may 'Halt Christmas!'  though Christmas will go ahead whatever.   The usual Saturday scare stories and little actual news, the Conservative Party will not allow this.

Friday, 26 November 2021

Another Flu Jab

Those fun-filled-frolickers who forecast the weather have delighted us by threatening snow for the morrow!  This appears to be funny in their eyes.  Now while snow can offer decent photographs it comes with other disadvantages, cold for a start slippy for another, dangerous for roads, old people, and me!  Brats throw snowballs at you, people spend their time grumbling about snow,(and I hate that) and buses and railways grind to a halt.  Cars that are driven are either slow or driven by untrained jet pilots with a death wish, and don't get me started on the slush that is left behind!
This also means that with a temperature of 2% tonight, thats 34% in English, the heating must be made to work, all this costs money!  I know this as I sit here now with my feet on the heater!  At gas central office they are breaking out the Bubbly already, just wait until January!

I was back this morning, in spite of the rain, to the surgery.  This time it was the Flu Jab.  The queue of aged people was long, but quickly parted to let me in to the Stasi.  She, I must say, was very cool in the heated atmosphere, lots of folks stumbling aroung hither and thither, some knowing where they were going, some not.  I, the youngest among them, was treated well by the Stasi, she even helpfully gave me the Blood Test result, nothing changed there, and sent me round to the old folks queue.   Five people were before me, except I was the only one on time!  I joked with the crew there before a nurse approached, called my name and off I went.  I must say these two nurses while efficient were not the cheeriest.  I suspect they have come in for the day to jab the Flu queue and then hop off to collect the kids.  Their men, if they have them, are welcome to their cheerless faces.   
All done I retreated to Sainsburys and Tesco, changed the bed, (it is nearly the end off the month) and set the washing machine going.  The day has been filled, or at least it has passed by quickly.  Now the darkness falls, the rush hour stumbles by slowly, the chill deepens and I am left wondering just how much snow will actually arrive tomorrow, if indeed it does. 
Because of an outcry in the past, by the grubby right-wing media, those weathermen are likely to 'Cry Wolf' to often these days just to avoid blame if it all goes wrong.  However, I will be residing indoors if the sun does not shine, the cupboards are full enough, the temptation to walk the chilly streets is not strong, and football might arrive.

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

Ancient & Medieval Worlds lecture 1: Mesopotamia part 1


Thought some of you might like this.  This is the first in a series of short lectures about the distant past, which some of you may remember...   
There are about a dozen or so in the list.  I have watched this one and found it quite easy to listen to.  Putting it on YouTube allows you to see what the others in line are.

Tuesday, 23 November 2021

Sun, Sky and NHS

The sun was up, the sky was blue, an ideal time to walk round the corner and have the first off three visits to the NHS.  Get them in now folks before Boris sells the NHS off it to his donors.  Today was a blood test.  This meant being first in the queue of old men at ten this morning to have the delightful, efficient nurse struggle to get blood out of this stone.  She tried the left arm unsuccessfully leaving me with the conclusion that I was dead.  She smiled gently and thrust the needle willingly into the other arm in a fashion that disproved my conclusion.  Blood flowed!  
After this I wandered round Sainsburys seeking meat, some fool had forgotten to raid the freezer last night.  Thus I encountered several people of my acquaintance, including two who could not avoid me no matter how they tried, and headed home rejoicing.  Those two did not.  Thus encouraged I once again took my weary body, very weary this past week, across the park.  
There is something very enlightening and enjoyable found in crossing even a small area of green, especially when the sun is up, the sky blue, the air filled with light, and dogs taking their owners for walks wish to meet you.  It was indeed chilly however, when I first left the house the air that we breathe out was like a steam engine, but within an hour it had warmed up to freezing.  
And Winter has not started yet!
I ended up in Tesco for the things not available in Sainsburys.  They were not available in Tesco either.  However, I managed to spend money and hobble back home, clamber up the stairs for the second time, grateful I need not do this again today.

Ding Dong! Ding Dong!
'Hermes' at the door.  Packet collected for next door, I indicated the way around the back to Number 2 with a second.  Back up the stairs a third time after all.
It was as I laid the large red, plastic bag down I noticed the name.  
It was incorrect.  
This packet was for Number 2, not Number 5.  How stupid of me not to check the name.  Anyway, off I go, downstairs, round the back, knock on the door, and am glad that he indoors was as dumb as myself.  He never looked at the name either. His wife also spends too much online.  
Upstairs for the fourth time!  How happy I am!  My routine shattered I have lingered all day after this trying to catch up with things I keep forgetting to catch up with.
I anticipate tomorrow with great pleasure...

Saturday, 20 November 2021

Fungi, Tardis and Sweets

So far, it has been the usual confused day for me.  
Last night the laptop would not switch off.  So, after several late night attempts I left it to switch off by itself.  This morning it was still on, the sleep mode had come on, but now it would not connect to the WiFi. 
Troubleshooters were aroused, the yellow ethernet cable advised and once employed this worked well, but the thing was not connected properly.  
Then followed many attempts with troubleshooter and a restart.  Once restarted it now works fine, without ethernet cable filling the desk.  All appears back to normal.
Why?  Why does it do this to me?  There is no reason for this?   Grrrrrrrrr....   

The fungi pictured I found growing on a grassy patch behind the old Registery office.  Now being run as a kindergarden no-one bothers to cut the grass.  I guess Dave could identify these specimens but to me they are just Toadstools.  I agreed with a passing woman that we would not be eating these any time soon.

A late afternoon wander around town where the crowds gather for the 'Xmas Lights' being switched on.  Every child in the town was here, far too many people, and a few perplexed dogs.  I pushed, and was pushed about by the crowds, willing to mix it as not long after leaving home an Audi driver came close to hitting me.  I wished I had said more at the time but he kept moving.  Thus Irked, I wandered about.

Sweets abound here.  This stall is a regular who offers bags of teeth destroyer.  He remains considerably cheaper than the fancy stalls found today.  Candles, cakes and things I canny afford nor indeed desire.  Many have been before so must have made money, and Xmas arriving will do them some good.

Being FREE entry I popped into the museum for a peek.  I have not wandered about there for some time.  The space exhibition looked good, including this Tardis.  I refrained from opening the door as I was not sure where I would end up.  There used to be lots of these around Edinburgh, now almost all that remain have been turned onto coffee stalls!

Friday, 19 November 2021

Nothing to Say Friday


Nothing much happened again today.
Housework, searching the web for xmas gifts, searching online for packets that have not arrived, and changing passwords for some sites.  Not very exciting today.
Not a day for arguments on Twitter or newspaper pages, everyone appears quiet.  However, I see Lord Frost is claiming now there could be a breakthrough on Northern Ireland.  How come?  Well Boris has lost the support of his backbenchers and cannot guarantee they would support using Article 16.  Boris, as always, looks after Boris.  
Andrew Marr, a Labour man who has, for £400,000 a year, refused to attack the Tories is now leaving the BBC so he can 'Get his own voice back.'  To do this he is moving to Murdoch's LBC and Classic FM for a bit more than £400,000!  He will speak freely there?  I expect a female Tory lackey to take his place.  Nadine Dorries is also claiming people are afraid to speak on social media for fear of being 'cancelled.'  This from a woman who abuses others and blocks those who respond?  
Friday, when parliament shuts down, people head for home, some rejoice in a weekend of fun and gaiety, others in DIY and shopping.  Sensible people watch football.
That's a good idea.  I see there is a game on tonight, I think I had better check it out, don't you...?

Thursday, 18 November 2021

Stasi at the Surgery


I awoke after 6 am this morning and lay there full of fear and ire.  I had to phone the Stasi at the surgery to arrange a blood test ordered by the doctor.  My mind filled, as it does when still asleep, with imagined fears, arguments, responses and abuse.  I attempted to get this out of my mind by listening to the wireless but for an hour I wrote and re-wrote imagined complaints. 
At 7:30 I awoke peaceful.
I forgot to phone at 8 am and remembered after the half hour.  I then called, endured the corporal's long intro and pressed 'Number 2' as ordered.  She repeated the same words needlessly thus increasing the costs to me.  After the overture to an opera a gentler voice informed me I was 18th in the queue.  I put down the phone.  
Some time later I tried again, this time when answered I jumped straight to 'Number 2,' and then the opera overture.  Eventually the music stopped and the gentle voice informed me I was 13th, 13th!!!  "How long do they take to make appointments?" I wondered," I bet it is all those old people at fault."  
Later, I tried again, three times I have called at the most expensive time, at least now I was second in the queue.  Almost 25 minutes had gone by since I first dialed. (Do we still say 'dialed?')  At last the phone rang, and rang...and rang ...and rang...and rang...and a female voice kindly answered as I was muttering things down the line.  
I stated my case and was cheerily fixed up immediatley!  Shocked, I mentioned the Flu Jab I had not been offered.  "Right," she says, "Friday 26th?"  Shocked again I grasped the chance and the morning time offered.  
Isn't it just typical that when you fear something will be a struggle against the powers of evil the reality is very different?  I spent a few minutes checking to see if I was still asleep and dreaming, once convinced I was awake I also checked for bite marks.  None found, I had called reception and lived!  And you say prayer does not work?

I got out no further than Tesco today.  I had to go for those forgotten things yesterday, bread I am not supposed to have, chocolate I must avoid, wine which should not be taken and yoghurt which can be.  I also stocked up on 'Waterstones Voucher Cards.'  You see Amazon, whom you may have heard off, are having problems with 'Visa.'  Visa charges have increased from, if I remember right, 0.3 to 1.5 after Brexit.  The EU had a cap on these costs which we lost with Brexit so the price shot up.  This is now costing the UK £35 billion a year.  Amazon, those friendly staff-oriented people, are not happy and are ending UK Visa cards at the end of January (ensuring they get this Xmas in first).  So Waterstones it is then, which will surprise the members of my family who find reading a problem.  So, happily paying the young lady at the checkout I hobbled back the pretty way, avoiding buses, lorries at the building site, reversing vans up the side road and people attempting to keep a social distance away from me.  I think that was the reason.  Home to cogitate on the work to do tomorrow and wonder if it will get done?  

Tuesday, 16 November 2021

Hospital Helicopter, NHS and Flanders Stew.

Another day of nothingness I am glad to say.  The excitement of watching Scotland win and therefore make it to the play-off last night meant I required a peaceful morning.  There was no disturbance, bar the Air Rescue Helicopter buzzing over my head several times while he attempted to get into position to land opposite.  Twice in a month I think, once again I have no idea where they went but it departed shortly afterwards and headed of in the London Hospital direction.  Quicker than waiting for an ambulance these days I suspect.

This graph tells us how governments spend cash on the NHS.  It is clear why the NHS has a bed, doctor and nurse shortage, and people are dying in ambulances outside of hospitals because of government cutbacks.  This is a deliberate policy of selling the NHS to their US friends and it may well go through before the next election.  Add a pandemic, send all the EU staff back home, do not employ new staff, and before you know it there is a shortage and Boris is at the root of this.  With NHS mask providers not being allowed to sell to the NHS while Tory donors make big money for providing too much or the wrong thing while making millions we must ask "Who voted for this?"

Being reduced, I bought some casserole meat, not the healthy stuff pictured sadly.  This I cooked for over three hours this morning, adding the usual tins of 'whateversinthecupboard' along with 'whateverfoodislyingaround.'  Thus I made the first 'Flanders Stew' I have made for some time.   This concoction, as you know, is called thus because once cooked it looks like and tastes like the sticky, thick mud that lies all around Ypres in Flanders.  The first dollop, and that has to be the correct term, was as expected full of strange tastes, hidden behind curry powder, with meat containing no flavour whatsoever.  This will not surpise anyone.  Now, I have three more 'dollops' of this life giving nourishment to go through. 
That reminds me, I must make out my Will tonight...

Monday, 15 November 2021

Mope Monday


Nothing to do today but recover from weeks of hobbling around too much.
The knees were so painful yesterday I almost went flat on my face when coming down from the heights after taking fotos.  It was easy going up but the camber of the wee hill nearly killed me.  A young lass caught me and the many serving and ex-servingmen looking on kept their contempt to a mere glare.
So tired today, I have done nothing.  No effort was made, no exercise of any sort bar getting up and eating, and that badly, and what requires doing was ignored.  A blissful day, unlike any I have had recently.  
The news appears to revolve around Boris lying about Cop 26, his men lining their pockets or fiddling with the secretaries, and corruption abounding but few care as either they are 'at it' or nothing can be done.  
The bomb blast in Liverpool has heightened expectations of more such atta
cks.  The innocent taxi driver was extremely lucky to escape, the bomb going off while he was inside.  I suspect it was a poor home made device which possibly went off by accident.  Only the Bomber was killed, even the driver was sent home after first treatment.  Four others arrested.  The man in the Hi-Vis jacket who rushed to aid or capture the driver needs commendations also.   
Oh, Shell are moving HQ from the Netherlands to London in a 'show of faith in the UK,' say's the government.  Actually the Netherlands were going to limit their operation due to climate change and increase their taxes, so they ran to where the government cares not about the climate but does care about backhanders.  
Must be bed time...

Sunday, 14 November 2021