Last Dance – 2 July 2022

For a while anyway. Three weeks without dance classes while our teachers are off teaching on a cruise to the Baltic.

Drove out to Brookfield this morning. Into low lying cloud and drizzly rain. Not the best start, but that wouldn’t matter once we changed into our dance shoes and had the first couple of sequence dances under our belt. They were familiar, but then they would be. We’d danced them on Thursday afternoon at the tea dance. Next was Waltz. Not either of the waltzes we knew quite well and not any of the other variations on the theme of waltz that we’d experienced in the last year or so. No, this one was new to us and to most of the class too by the sound of things. The first part was really difficult for me at least. A 270º turn that looked so easy when Stewart was demonstrating it, but impossible for me. The next part wasn’t quite so difficult once you broke it down. Oh, and the language! Those esoteric phrases that mean nothing to me and describe nothing either. I’d give you examples, but they don’t stick in my head long enough to be recorded. I’m guessing I’m the same when I’m talking about “Shutter priority” and “three frames focus stack”, but there must be normal words that can describe a “reverse weave” for folk who are still struggling to decide whether they start on left or right foot.

We survived the waltz and then it was Cha-Cha. This used to be my pet hate, but now I’m beginning to enjoy it, although it does all happen fairly fast. We did not too bad with the cha-cha. One thing I like about it is that you don’t travel very far. Another thing is that it doesn’t matter, at our level, which direction you are facing after you finish. You just continue from there. That may not be the what would get you top marks in a competition, but it works for us.

All too soon, we were finished and I’d actually enjoyed most of the class. Next we had to decide how to get home. On the way in we saw the crowds of Orange Order marchers enjoying their legal right to march through Glasgow with their banners. I wondered what would be the easiest way back from Brookfield, avoiding them. I chose to take the shortcut through the Clyde Tunnel and along the Express Way. That usually cuts off the 5mph crawl up and over the Kingston Bridge, but for some reason today both routes were equally free running and we were home much earlier than we expected.

But I’d forgotten we were going to collect my suit from the cleaners and I had to go out again to collect it, perfectly cleaned with the marks, whatever they were, removed. Well worth the £15 it cost. I got some ham for my lunch when I was next door in Tesco.

Watched the live practice for the British F1 GP and got really interested in the final minutes of a race that was run in Scottish weather (ie torrential rain) in an English circuit. It looks like it will be difficult to predict a winner tomorrow.

Went out for a walk in St Mo’s and PoD was a Latticed Heath moth. I’d tried to capture an image of one yesterday, but it evaded me. Not so today. It became PoD.
I came home via the chip shop in Condorrat with two small fish suppers. I know I’ll suffer for them afterwards, but the taste outweighs the inconvenience and there’s always Gaviscon.

Watched the final of Glow Up and wonder if any of these aspiring make up artists really go out dressed as devils and zombies or if it’s just a test to see how off the wall they can be.

Tomorrow we don’t have any plans. If the weather would settle down we could maybe get out for a walk somewhere interesting that isn’t Broadwood or St Mo’s. We live in hope.

Dancin’ – 30 June 2022

Out dancing in Paisley

We drove over to Paisley just after midday for today’s tea dance. Got there late as usual. My fault again, as usual. Danced the afternoon away. We didn’t dance the Tango because we were too busy talking and we didn’t dance the Quickstep, because we can’t remember any of the steps Michael taught us and we never get a straight run at it with Stewart and Jane because we’re off visiting somewhere. One of these times we’ll get a chance for a private lesson and begin to dance the Quickstep. Everything else, Waltz, Social Foxtrot, Rumba and Cha-Cha plus innumerable sequence dances. It was a great way of adding to our step count and must have done us some good, because we were both exhausted when the ‘Last Waltz’ was called.

When the dancing was done, I gave Stewart the painting he’d asked me for back in February. It’s not the exact one he saw on Facebook, but a very good copy, and a larger copy too. I think it’s going to an 80 year old lady who simply loves ‘Green Door’ by Shakin Stevens and that’s what’s in the painting, my version of Green Door. I told him that I hoped it would exorcise that song which constantly runs through my head. I catch myself singing it at odd times through the day. It must be some kind of strange disease, because I hate that song!

As we were driving home I kept watching the great black clouds that were gathering in front of us and remembered the warning ‘Alexa’ gave this morning for thunderstorms. However, we got home without getting wet. The car took a bit of a soaking, but we were dry. Scamp’s washing that she’d left out also got an extra rinse from the rain, but the sun was warm and there was a gentle breeze, so most of them were drying. Despite that, she decided it was time to take them in and it was a good choice, because not long after that, the rain came.

I couldn’t be bothered going over to St Mo’s after the rain stopped. Instead I took some photos in and around the garden, but they weren’t that good. Despite my best efforts, I just couldn’t make a silk purse out of that sow’s ear. It was after our, Bacon and Borlotti Beans, dinner when I took a look outside and saw the light shining through the rain and the roses that grow round the back door. That’s where today’s PoD came from. Roses in the rain.

For once, I enjoyed the tea dance. I felt at home with most of the dances, even the social foxtrot which we’ve never managed, we did quite well today. It wasn’t full of fancy moves, it was just moving to the music, but that’s what dancing is, isn’t it?

Absolutely no plans for tomorrow, but there will be something, you can bet your boots on that.

Pride Glasgow 2022 – 25 June 2022

Today we were off to watch the madness that takes over Glasgow for one day only a year and it is called Pride Glasgow.

But first there was unfinished business to attend to and a couple of surprises in store. One for Scamp, and one for me. Scamp’s came first.

The postman knocked the door and handed Scamp a parcel, a long parcel, square in shape. A parcel that could contain a really fat pencil or a straight banana if such a thing existed. But there were no bananas or pencils in the parcel. There was a plant in a pot, carefully packaged. It was a Heuchera of the variety ‘Paprika’. We had one years ago, but it died and we’d been searching for a replacement in every garden centre we’ve visited, without success. What we’d forgotten was the biggest garden centre of all, the Internet. I found Paprika the other night, bought it right away, and it arrived today. It was supposed to arrive yesterday, but because of the inefficiency of Royal Mail, it appeared today. At least it did appear. Scamp was delighted and treated it like an infant, being careful to put it out in the sunniest spot in the garden for a while. What was really strange was that I hadn’t checked where it was coming from, I suspected it was from somewhere in the south of England. In fact it came from a wholesale nursery in Kilsyth, about ten miles away!

My surprise was next. I was checking for ‘likes’ and comments on my photos posted on Flickr and discovered that the green photo from a few days ago of a spider’s nest had won ‘Explore’. That is equivalent of an Olympic Gold Medal in Flickr. Suddenly everyone want to congratulate you and your ‘likes’ soar to unrealistic numbers. On a good day I get maybe four or five ‘likes’ on Flickr. This morning I had 71! Now, just after midnight, I have 180! I was Star for a Day.

I think I may have driven in to Glasgow with a smile on my face for once. We walked down to the GOMA and along Ingram Street. Almost at the end of the street we saw the first blue lights of the motorcycle outriders for the Pride March. Five or ten minutes later we saw the first open top bus with the grandees. The old guard of the Pride March. Then it was just the people. Possibly, probably most were running on fuel of some alcoholic description, but a lot of them were just there for the fun, and so were we. I think the first person who was handing out lollypops was surprised at the welcome they got, but lollypops have become a big part of Pride. There were young folk, old folk and middle aged folk too. Folk from every walk of life just out celebrating. Covid could have put an end to Pride, but we agreed that this year, while different from other years was almost as good as the best. Long may it continue.

It was lunchtime by the time we’d seen all the characters and rainbow banners and we went to Paesano for lunch. I was driving, but Scamp had a Prosecco with her pizza (No 1 with no garlic, plus extra rocket – yes, I know there’s no cheese. Mine was a No7 Fennel sausage, tomato sugo and mozzarella).

Drove home and processed the 200 odd photos I’d taken and posted PoD which I called The Look. No, they don’t have a fag in their mouth, it’s the phone from the person behind. (For the benefit of readers from across the pond, ‘Fag’ = ‘Cigarette’, not what you think.)

Next task was to get showered, shaved and changed to go out to a ballroom dance in Brookfield (Scamp passed on the shaving!). We had a brilliant time dancing to almost all of the tracks that Stewart played. I must admit I was almost dead on my feet by the time it finished and we drove home in a strange twilight arriving home just after 11pm. You will have gathered by now that this is a catch up.

Tomorrow we may have a long lie in to recover. After that the day will be our oyster. I’m sure some of those walkers and dancers from Gay Pride Glasgow 2022 will have sore feet and heads tomorrow too.

Dancing in the Sunshine – 19 June 2022

None of yer Slow – Slow – Quick – Quack – Slooow, ballroom dancin’. Dancin’! Reely dancin’. Salsa dancin’.

Spoke to Hazy in the morning and thanked her for her very funny card (No, I wasn’t offended, I can improve in the resit!), and her Father’s Day present. It’s official now, I’m an Artist! I’ve got the mug to prove it! Good to know that you didn’t have too much trouble with thunderstorms down south.

It was a lovely morning and I’d actually planned to go for a walk in Colzium estate, but left it too late, as usual. Instead we took our time over lunch and then got ready to drive down to Glasgow Green for today’s main event. Shannon the salsa teacher had organised a Salsa Picnic, bring your own blanket and food. We got there just as things were heating up and after meeting folk we hadn’t seen for years, we did manage a few dances. Then more chatting to old friends, then Shannon started a Rueda where we dance with a partner in a big circle and the leader calls out the move and everyone performs it at the same time. Then we change parters when we’re told to and so it goes on. That’s the theory, anyway. In reality it never works quite as smoothly or as simply as that. Some folk had never danced a Rueda before, others thought they knew, but didn’t. It was what it usually is, a car crash. But, and this is the most important thing, but it was a good humoured car crash. Nobody fell out with anyone else, everybody, even me was kind and considerate to everyone else.

However, dancing two Ruedas, one after the other and energetic couple dancing too takes it out of us ‘oldies’, so we excused ourselves and went for a walk round Glasgow Green where there seemed to be an early Gay Pride meeting for teens. We walked round it but didn’t buy into it. We’ll wait for the real Gay Pride procession in Glasgow on Saturday. So much more, I don’t know, maybe just grown up!

We walked back to the Doulton Fountain where the salsa was going on. We had another dance and then found more folk we hadn’t met face to face for years. I took a few photos, but my favourite and PoD was one of an Indian group having a big family picnic on the grass of The Green. One of the salsa dancers had brought his drone along and was filming the dancing from an elevated position. However, my little brain was full and I’d danced almost all moves at least twice. That’s what happens when you don’t practise every week, you just remember the moves you like the best. We drove home.

We sat in the garden for a while with a good book each soaking up some sun and watching the busy bees. Since it was Father’s day, I got to choose my dinner. I chose Mince ’n’ Tatties and Scamp chose ‘Rats’. It’s nice to get real (not posh, not fancy) food.

Spoke to Jamie later and told him I appreciated the ’Scottish’ Father’s day card from my ‘Wane’ not ‘Wain’ as some say or ‘Wean’ as it should be. Good to hear that they are bat free at present. If you have any more problems with the bats, just call in Hazy and Neil, they have experience dealing with the flying rats!

A few more minutes out in the sun, then it was time to call a halt, because that east wind was becoming a bit cool, so it was time to bring the seats in and shut the back door.

That was a good day. I thoroughly enjoyed it. So did Scamp. So nice to have a dance in the sunshine and to have such a clever and thoughtful family behind you.

Maybe going east tomorrow and maybe on the bus.

Flash dance class – 4 June 2022

We got a message today to say that due to the small numbers in today’s class, the time would be reduced from 90 minutes to 60 minutes.

I was delighted. Sometimes the dance class goes on for too long and an hour seemed just about right, but by the time we were finishing up, I could have happily worked on for another 30 minutes. However the teachers are the bosses here and we’d added a new Cha-Cha to our dance list. The Charnwood Cha-Cha uses a lot of moves we’ve learned already with just a few differences. I wouldn’t say we had it off pat, but most of it was there. The other dance we did was the ‘Baby Waltz”. So called because it’s a shortened routine. Most of the time I got it right, but towards the end my brain was lagging a bit and I kept making the same mistake, time after time. Eventually we agreed. I was over-thinking it and when I just went with the flow it worked again.

I wanted some stuff in Cass Art in Glasgow and Scamp suggested we go for lunch in Doppio Malto, an Italian restaurant and beer shop. We’d been there before and the focaccia was the best we’d had anywhere. Today Scamp had a Bean Burger with chips and peppers. I had Supreme of Chicken. Not quite the supreme of chicken that I’d had last week at Laura and Ross’s wedding, just a bit more rustic. With grilled aubergine slices, courgette and peppers and served with hand cut skin on chips. And of course we had that super focaccia with rosemary and salt. Just as good, if not better than the last time.

We went to Cass Art but they didn’t have what I was looking for. When we were walking back to the car, Scamp suggested that we go to Hobbycraft as it’s almost on the way. We did, and they had what I was looking for. Also they had dark chocolate chips which I wanted to try making Cantucci (little hard Italian biscuits) what my uncle Jimmy White would have called Hard Tack!

Back home it was really warm but with a gentle breeze to cool things down. I put on my shorts and a tee shirt and took the Sony for a walk in St Mo’s. There I got today’s PoD which was a Green Orb-Weaver Spider, sometimes known as a Cucumber Green Spider.

When I got back, Scamp was already ensconced in the back garden, reading but only with a soda water and lime. I joined her and we had a beer each. I’m now reading Bad Actors because I finished Under Pressure by Robert Pobi. Brilliant book.

Another setback Hazy. The post office in Tesco was closed today because of a strike by postal workers. You couldn’t write this! I might be quicker driving down and handing you the memory stick! I’ll try again tomorrow.

No plans for tomorrow, except to try to post a parcel to Chessington!

 

Wedding – 21 May 2022

The wedding wasn’t until 3pm, so we had a whole morning to fill.

We drove up to the tiny little parking place above what I heard a guide describe as “the healing spring”. We’d walked this path a few years ago, but it obviously didn’t make a great impression on me, because I couldn’t remember anything about it. It was a pleasant wee walk down around some hawthorn bushes and we did take a short detour that led us into a whole host of wild orchids. One of them made PoD. We thought the path would take us down to the shore, but it ended quite abruptly at a strange wee lochan of perfectly clear water. It was almost turquoise in colour. On reading about it later, it turned out that was the ‘healing waters’ and people would travel from far and wide to bathe in it and drink the waters, although there was no record of it having any medicinal properties. We chose not to bathe in or drink the waters and anyway we’d forgot our swimming costumes. There didn’t seem to be any way down from the lochan to the shore, so we walked back up the path we’d just come down, almost just in time to get back to the car before the rain started. Yes, we did get soaked.

We’d a couple of hours to have a quick lunch before we needed to get dressed for the wedding. The car was to pick us up at 2pm to be at the site for the wedding. June and Ian were to go first and then the driver would come back for us. That rain that started when we were waking back to the car had continued and got heavier when we were back at he house. Scamp and I were dressed when the car arrived to for J&I and Scamp went out in the rain to help June into the car. After that we had a while to wait before it was our turn. Eventually the driver arrived for us and just as we were setting off, I realised I didn’t know where I’d put the house key. Not having pockets in my kilt, and all the pockets in my dress jacket being sewn up still, I couldn’t think where the key would be. Eventually I found it had dropped in between my jacket and my waistcoat. It must have landed there when I was putting on my seatbelt.

So, we got to the wedding which was indeed in a barn, but what a barn. Carpets on the floor and seats arranged in rows. Family members at the front and also-rans at the back. Decorated with tassels, hundreds of them, hanging from strings on the rafters. A humanist ceremony with a Celebrant rather than a minister or an official at a registry office. This was much more relaxed and personal. I liked it.

From the barn we walked down a path lit with fairy lights to the marquee, in the sunshine. There we met with the new Mr & Mrs Macdonald who had gone on ahead. We were also able to have a glass of Prosecco and Canapés before being seated in the marquee. I had Scotch Broth with Texel lamb, peas and barley while Scamp had Artichoke & Spring vegetable soup, both served with sourdough rolls.
Our main courses were Curried lentil, sweet potato and spinach pie for Scamp and Moroccan spiced mutton & apricot pie for me with various sided dishes Boston style baked beans, Rosemary and sea salt potato wedges and Sautéed spring veg. Dessert, if you had room for it, was Four different types of donuts. I made room! Food fit for a special wedding.

After a decent time, the four piece band of fiddle, accordion, keyboard and drums got us all on the dance floor. Scamp and I did a few of the country dances, but as the night got older, the length and speed of the dances seemed to increase and we saw watching rather than taking part. June and Ian left around 10.30pm, but we stayed and even managed a very badly danced salsa when the band were on their break. After their break, the band continued, but the pace was now frantic. Soon, too soon, we were at the last dance which was an Orcadian Strip the Willow which must have been the longest, fastest and most out of control of the night. We had no wish to be part of it, but Scamp’s younger sister was keen to join in. Well done to her. A rousing rendition of Loch Lomond signalled the end to the festivities for most of us.

So, it was now time to go. Time to pack up and make our way through the dark (there are no streetlights here ) and in the rain to try to find our taxi which we were assured would be waiting for us. We missed it, but caught it again when it was climbing the hill with the Gillies family in it. We eventually got back to the house about 1am. I took the opportunity to download my photos to the laptop and have a browse through them while having a final G ’n’ T with Scamp. Got to bed just before 2am, so as you will already have gathered, this is a catch up.

Tomorrow (today) we will be recovering.

 

Stuffing bags – 17 May 2022

Scamp was out this morning, early and I decided I should make a final push at stuffing things into bags.

Yes, but stuffing things into bags in such a way that I’d be able to find them again later! That took up most of the morning, by which time Scamp had returned with confetti and cards, because we’re going to a wedding, not today, thankfully, but soon.

Bag stuffing completed and purchasing completed we settled down to lunch.

With some time to spare, I wangled a 3 for today’s Wordle. Scamp wasn’t so lucky, with a 6, but at least she did get the word, which is the target to aim for some days. If you haven’t a clue what I’m talking about, search the interweb for Wordle and join the people driven crazy by this addictive word puzzle. It’s like the old ‘70s peg game Mastermind with a touch of Scrabble thrown in for good measure.

That entertained us for a while before we had to decide what dinner was going to be. I suggested the easy way out – get an instant curry from M&S. That seemed to hit the spot and off we went in search of that quarry. We found a couple of new curries on the shelves. Scamp chose a Prawn Bhuna and I had a Lamb Rogan Josh we also had some Onion Bhajis. We walked back up the road and Scamp volunteered to take the food home which gave me the chance of a walk round St Mo’s. Found today’s PoD near the pond. It’s an as yet unidentified spider with its dinner of a black fly. No macro lens today, so this was captured with the kit lens.

Back home with just enough time to get changed before we headed off for the last week of Jamie Gal’s little pop-up salsa class at the Fort Theatre in Bishopbriggs. Such good fun, and such a pity he doesn’t have the time to keep it going. I’ll miss the exercise on a Tuesday night.

Back home the Bhuna was too much for Scamp so I ‘helped’ her to finish it as well as my own. The verdict was that the Bhuna was just hot enough to be comfortable. The Rogan Josh was good, but needed salt and the Bhajis were just ok. At least we didn’t need to cook it.

Heavy rain tonight that is due to last through the night, leaving a better day tomorrow. Let’s hope they got it right.

 

Spider Man – 14 May 2022

That’s me!

But let’s start at the beginning. We were going to dance class this morning. Up and out by 10.15 and walking in to the clubhouse of Brookfield Bowling Club, where the dance class is on a Saturday morning, by just before 11am.

We weren’t the first on the floor today, that privilege went to a couple who had been learning the first dance for their wedding in a couple of weeks time. Usually we just wait outside and see what delights the cast offs from a Food Bank have for us. It’s a terrible shame to see such good food go to waste when greedy guts like us could eat it. The couple. They needed an audience to demonstrate to and who better to show off their dance to, than us oldies and not so oldies. We watched their routine and while not faultless, it was exceptionally good for just a few short weeks of practise.

After they left, we were on the floor. This was really a preparation for next week’s ball in Perth which we won’t be able to attend. It suited us though, because we got a chance to run through a lot of dances in a short time. Thankfully we got another chance to brush up on our Quickstep, but also the X-Line Tango, the ‘Baby’ Waltz which might be useful soon as well as the Sallyanne Cha-Cha and the Sweetheart Cha-Cha. Not a bad list of dances to cram into an hour and a half. When we left we had to navigate the ‘Boolers’ who were playing their first serious match of the year, all dressed in their bowling whites. How the groundsmen and women manage to keep that grass looking so healthy and so short is beyond me.

Drove home by way of the Clyde Tunnel which cuts off a large part of the 40mph narrow lanes while road repairs are conducted, but also the crawl up to the Kingston Bridge. So much more relaxing after a hard morning’s dancing.

I think we were exhausted after our energetic morning and just sat around for a while after lunch competing with each other for the shortest number of tries at Worldle. Scamp got 5 and I got 3, Hazy. While Scamp walked down to the shops for potatoes, I earthed up OUR potatoes. Two bags almost full of earth now and two about half full.

Later I took the Sony for a walk in St Mo’s, hoping that the heat today would encourage some damselfly activity, but although there was a fair selection of insect life, there are no damselflies as yet. Loads of Wolf Spiders, though. I watched one trying to terrorise an ant, only to be doused in what I think was formic acid from this tiny ant. I don’t think the spider will make that mistake again. A full face shot of a wolf spider made PoD.

Tomorrow we might go for a walk, maybe to Chatelherault.

 

Sensible Shoes – 10 May 2022

We were going in to Glasgow today to get me a pair of sensible shoes. They would make a change from the black Ghillie brogues I have just now. The brogues themselves are actually quite comfortable, but the long laces criss-crossing the knee length kilt socks are awkward things to tie and uncomfortable after a while. I thought I’d try a pair of brown brogues instead. The first shop I tried had a pair that seemed to be what I was looking for. Foolishly I didn’t try them on, but went looking to see if there was anything else in a similar style.

There were loads of shoes in a similar style, but none that caught my eye. One pair looked the part, but when I tried them on, there was something just not right about them. Scamp noticed the creases in the leather that showed that they have been tried at home and returned as not suitable. They weren’t suitable for me either. There were brogues in dark brown, tan and even yellow. Brogues made from leather with tartan patches, some with tweed patches. Some were definitely meant for tramping the peat bogs of Wester Ross, weighing in at about a hundredweight each and others so thin you could spit peas through them. M&S had a great selection in every size under the sun … except mine. Eventually, after a coffee and a croissant in Nero I made my decision to go back to the first shop and try on that pair. They fitted perfectly. The looked like I wanted them to look. They were solid without being too clumpy. I bought them. The assistant wanted to put them in a machine that would spray them with some undisclosed liquid that would make them waterproof, stain-resistant, crease resistant and self ironing. She seemed quite disappointed when I said I’d polish them myself with shoe polish.

We drove home after Scamp had picked some cosmetics to make her look even more beautiful than she already is, if that’s possible. On the way to the car I grabbed a couple of photos from the JL bridge. One of them became PoD after some gentle toning and tweaking in Lightroom.

Lunch was a piece ’n’ banana. Fresh bread and a banana. The only thing that would make it better was a sprinkling of sugar, but I decided to forego that pleasure. Sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. I took a walk over St Mo’s later, but there wasn’t much to see although I did get one decent photo which is on Flickr.

Scamp was off to choir tonight, so I was going to be a salsa helper all by myself. The class was much the same as last week. We went over the same moves as last week and then Jamie added in Damé then, just for the hell of it, Damé Dos. It’s about a level 3 move, but the folk all enjoyed it. Really, it could have been carnage, but it didn’t. Great fun.

When I got home and pressed the button to stop the engine, all the lights in the car went out and it wouldn’t start again. The car wouldn’t lock and the boot wouldn’t open. Inside my car’s key fob there is a hidden key. I used it to lock, then unlock the car. Then I started it as normal, well nearly normal. It appears that the trip mileage had been reset and also the mpg was reset. The second time this has happened in the last couple of weeks. I’m taking it to the garage tomorrow.

Tomorrow, apart from a trip to Stirling we’re both hoping to go for coffee. Me with Val and Scamp with Isobel.

Dancin’, Drivin’ and Helensburgh – 7 May 2022

That was the day in three words. Sorry about the last sweary word, Jamie!

Drove to Brookfield today and found that instead of the quickstep we’d been practising, we were dancing a Foxtrot, a Tango Serida, a <spit> Cha-Cha, a ‘Baby’ Waltz and as many sequence dances as they could cram in. I actually enjoyed the Foxtrot. Quite an elegant dance. The tango serida was just a bit of meaningless fluff. Instantly forgettable. The cha-cha I almost managed and the ‘baby’ waltz is just a waltz we’ve been messing about with for weeks now. Could be useful for dances if nobody knows what it should REALLY look like! Thankfully there weren’t too many sequence dances to fit in as time was tight. All in all, not as bad as it could have been.

<Warning DON’T read this Jamie>
It had been a 20mph drag getting through the roadworks on the M8 this morning and I’d no intention of facing them again on the way back, so I suggested we go for a drive to Helensburgh. When we got there, OH NO! The carpark was gone. The big carpark with a million space and no charge for parking was gone. In its place was a steel and glass featureless lump. Apparently it is a Leisure Centre. A Leisure Centre in Helensburgh is a bit pointless. Most of the inhabitants are well over 80 and the rest are sailors who work at the naval base a few miles up the estuary and who have their own free (I guess) leisure centre at the base. Finally found a place to park, and had to pay! For the first time in Helensburgh, we had to pay! What is the world coming to. Even worse, the pizza shop was closed. We walked along the esplanade and I took a few photos of wee dinghies sailing and trying to race in an almost complete calm. Had a coffee and a panini each in a busy little Costa off the main road. Scamp found another clothes shop and bought a dress. Further on she found a matching fascinator that didn’t look like a black widow spider! My purchases of the day were a few slices of black pudding, two lamb and sausage meat patties and two Italian sausages that smelled strongly of garlic. We drove back home with out touching the roadworks on the M8.
<OK Jamie. It’s safe to come back>

That was about it for the day. A photo of the wee dinghies trying to race became PoD. Dinner was Chicken Pasta in a Tomato Ragu. More a Monday dinner than a Saturday, but it filled a wee space.

Tomorrow I must go out and take some meaningful photos. I just feel I’m treading water these days and need to get out and take photos of things that interest me. Also I really need to do something about my phone. It’s beginning to fail in quite a few ways. Any suggestions or recommendations would be welcome.