Monday, February 08, 2016

The South Bank

Wordless Wednesday

I walked from Westminster to St Paul's via London's South Bank

Big Ben...bong...bong...bong...times ten!

The Houses of Parliament

The London Eye

South Bank skate park

Posters near the National Theatre

The River Thames 'beach'!

Some bridges

The Tate Modern art gallery

The 'Wobbly' Bridge

Approaching St Paul's Cathedral

My bus to the station, then home!


Sunday, February 07, 2016

Sunday Photo Fiction

Please scroll down or click HERE for my Whirligig and Scribblings story.

This week's photo at Sunday Photo Fiction is of a place I know very well!  I regularly use it for day trips across the sea for lunch in Calais, for a 'booze cruise' to a cheap and cheerful wine warehouse, or as the first step on my way to holiday - often with  just my little tent for company!

Her car was first in line at Dover Docks. She was first on board and first to reach the bar.

Champagne please. A large glass Miss? No, a bottle.

The ferry glided away from the quay and headed out into the English Channel. She stood on the stern deck, glass in one hand, bottle in the other, leaning on the shuddering railings. She watched as the wake tumbled away into the distance. The white chalk cliffs grew smaller and smaller then smaller still. Grey smoke billowed from the funnel, floated skyward then joined the floating clouds above.

Her tragic life played out in her tortured mind. Her sombre thoughts, her painful memories, her reason for carrying on swept away by the rushing wind. 

Please join your vehicles, an unseen voice said.

The obedient passengers filed down to the car deck, and one by one drove from the ferry and away into France and beyond.

On the stern deck lay an empty bottle, a shattered glass and a set of keys.

Down below, just one car remained.


Saturday, February 06, 2016

Those were the days .....

This Little vignette appeared from nowhere

when I read this week's given words at 

Sunday's Whirligig and Sunday Scribblings

the Second. 

Memories (or maybe not) of my late teens in Swinging 6o's London Town!

Those were the days my friend.

A whisper, a venue.

Ate a cake that sent us swaying. 

Passed a mysterious envelope from one eager hand to another.

Carried another suitcase to another hall, its contents hiding ’twixt the pleats of a skirt, the folds of a shirt, in the sole of a shoe.

Lucy. Lucy in the sky. Lucy. Lucy?

Fever my friend. Fever in the morning, fever all through the night. Fever!

Memories mon amie. Souvenirs tout au long de la nuit. Some scissor sharp. Some forgotten.

Best forgotten.

Those were the days, oh yes those were the days.

Blimey - she's 66 now!

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Three Word Wednesday

It’s a typical Friday night at The Dog and Duck and the usual crowd are sitting over in the far corner. 

There's Tina. Tearful Tina they call her. It takes nothing to set her off. Any story that’s vaguely sad starts the tears flowing. Not just sad things either. She sees a kitten, she cries. Someone says something nice to her, she cries.  When she laughs, she cries.

Then there goes Unsteady Eddy. As he totters back from the bar with a tray of drinks, everybody dives for cover as he slops beer and cascades coke all over the place.

There on the right sits Rude Jude. Her abrasive manner regularly sets off Tina’s torrents and makes Eddy more nervous and clumsier than he normally is.

Add Pompous Pierre, Jolly Gillian, Lanky Larry, Snotty Dotty and Windy William to the mix and you have the most eclectic crowd you could ever wish to ....avoid!

So I’m of The Bicycle Arms to meet my friend Rosey. She’s like all of the others rolled into one. But don’t tell her I said so!


Sunday, January 31, 2016

(almost) Wordless Wednesday

Please excuse the foreword - I felt it was necessary in order to set the scene!

Four months ago my daughter Penny and her husband Martin packed their bags and moved five hundred miles north to Scotland. I recently spent three days with them in and around their new home in the Trossachs National Park near Loch Lomond and not too far from Glencoe.

Any preconceived ideas I had about the country and its people were completely blown away helped partly by gale force winds! I was amazed as the beautiful landscape unfolded before me, and charmed by the hospitality I received everywhere we went. I took several hundred photos, and after spending many hours sorting through them, I have chosen those I feel best to represent my experience. You could be forgiven that thinking I have made the colours more intense. It was not necessary. I have never seen richer colours anywhere in the world.

         *Click on the pictures to enlarge them and vastly improve the quality

Penny and Martin indulged my love of whisky by arranging for me to take a tour of Glengoyne Distillery.

Yes, that bottle really is £2850!

...and then we were back on the road again!

I couldn't be there on Burns Night and not have Haggis tatties and neaps with a wee dram on the side. The pub we went to had shelves filled with dozens of  brands of malt whisky.

Fasten your seatbelt - we are off again!

And so it's farewell and thank you to Penny and Martin. I'm looking forward to coming back in the Summer!