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Showing posts from September, 2016

Hiding in a ranty ramble while Trying to Understand where the lines are drawn and wishing for rEdemption

'Drawing the line' - an innocuous little phrase at first glance. Pick up a pencil and make a long straight mark on a sheet of paper. Or use your finger or a stick to drag a line across sand. It's creative. Lasting (though not in sand). A demarcation of sorts. It says, I am here. This is my mark. It is a beginning; a boundary between what you were before you drew the line and what you are now. Life after drawing the line is different. Changed. Redefined. Thus, we understand the literal meaning of drawing the line. And perhaps how drawing a line can change us. But metaphorically, as it is often used, what does it really mean? Drawing the line: definition - idiom, meaning to put a limit on your actions or to avoid doing something because you think it is wrong. People draw the (aspirational, imaginary) line in different situations all the time. Different people draw different lines. Or versions of the same lines but set at different levels.  Some lines are - or should be -

Departures and new beginnings

Departure - definition:  the act of 1) leaving or embarking on a journey or 2) deviating from the expected path. From old French, departir. Robert Frost wrote ' The only certain freedom's in departure.' True; you depart, you leave everything behind. It's up to you if you embrace the freedom totally. Or taste it and come back. You can return. You can always depart again. And repeat again. And again. While recurring departures and arrivals occur every day and carry us on a roller-coaster of emotions through life - precipitating tears and laughter; elation and despair; love one minute and betrayal the next; and can-I-come-too and are-we-nearly-there-yet - forever my favourite source of pithy, heartfelt words, Winnie the Pooh, reminds me ' How lucky am I to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.' Whenever I find myself saying goodbye to one of those somethings, especially if the something is one or more of my children, I (always in their case) mean

Respect for fashion. Roman holidays. Ruins. And procrasti-Rambling.

Anyone who knows me, or has read my blog posts before and has a feel for who I am, will look at that title and shake their head in disbelief, for I am no follower of fashion - unless it's the fashion of the gardener or dog-walker: slightly dishevelled, crumpled round the edges, wearing fraying jeans, shirts with no discernible remnant of shape, wellies and a little mud (on a good day ... a lot of mud, on every other day). But look carefully. For what I wrote was not 'follower of' fashion but 'respect for' fashion. I respect fashion. Not - as will be obvious to everyone - in the sense of acquisition and adornment of myself. For a start, I am short and un-fashionably rounded at the edges; soft and squishy and good for cuddling, I have been told. But in the artistic sense. I appreciate the artistic beauty of (most) fashion. And the industry and craft that prop up the big fashion houses. I am not referring to the near slavery that underpins and undermines the chea

Big Birthdays, surprises and wee beasties

The wee beastie - 'weight for weight more ferocious than the Bengal tiger' * - or Scottish midge, is as effective a spoiler of the 'best laid plans o' ... men' (and probably also of mice, since they feast on other unfortunates too) than any other 'spoiler' I know - better than rain, or forgetting to write a list, or an attack of the lurgy. Because the wee beasties are just so utterly and incredibly MADDENING! Nothing else lets you plan an early evening drink outside with friends, enjoying the last of the summer sun and then sends you running into the house in a frenzy of screaming 'Open the door!-Shut-it-QUICK!' while simultaneously spilling your wine, tossing your canap├ęs all over the ground and slapping your ears, scratching your ankles and generally behaving as though suddenly demented. At least, you would look demented to anyone watching, though anyone in the near vicinity (anywhere North of the Clyde) poised enough to be watching, would be do

Of holidays and holiday snaps

Foreign holidays; what are they good for? Blue skies and pretty buildings Opening your eyes to things new and different and inspiring that send your head off into an intoxicating spin of words and stories and pictures and magic and light and mystery ... I see these lamps and imagine spirits huddled round them at night to keep warm; spirits that sing so quietly that you almost notice a softly lilting hum and then wonder what it was you were hearing and look away before anyone notices how intently you were studying the lamps and comments on the mad, far-away glint in your eye and wonders if it is something to do with the bottle of red at lunch-time; and spirits that sway as they sing, making the hot air dance and shimmer ... Seeing strange places and dreaming a people, their culture and history, at a time very different to our own  Being one of a crowd and experiencing that awkward, shuffling tourist-as-one-of-a-herd discombobulation at sites o