Tag Archives: buses

trying to find my spring….

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times are hard.  It seems the whole world is struggling and I’m in there thrashing about with the best of them.

But I get on my local bus and Alan the driver always greets me by name as he does most of his passengers.  And if Davy, who uses his bus pass to gently while away the day by just sitting and observing to and fro on the local journey up past the Beauly Firth, can help someone with a pram or a suitcase he does with pleasure and a shy smile.  People are basically kind and friendly – we all need a pat on the back occasionally and we all blossom when we are acknowledged for just being a person.  Because I am retired and my hobbies are quite isolating climbing onto ‘my’ transport taking me into the ‘world’ has become a simple pleasure.  Now and then I do miss not having a car but I only have to look at the debit and credit accounts on owning a car and I know for once I’m on the right side.

Not long ago I signed up for a course at the Highland Printmakers Studio ( should be able to link this but sorry I haven’t got there yet). A really great place full of creative energy and very helpful, friendly artists who are eager to share their enthusiasm.  As I have no knowledge, or experience of printmaking I just found a course that still had room which was Collagraph.  Never heard of it but thats what I wanted to go and tackle the unknown!  Next week is the last of a 6 week course and I have really enjoyed myself.  Back to childhood covered in glue and ink, thank goodness for aprons.   I have started drawing again I have been made more aware of shapes and textures and my first love colour was given free rein but in a new constrained way.  I loved the way you created a ‘block’ you printed from with paper, card, bits of fabric, cotton thread, string pretty much anything that would work all torn or cut into shapes and glued onto card – the net bag lemons and oranges often come in add brilliant texture.. Then you applied printing inks – hard work this as you had to rub into all the edges then remove some etc etc etc.  or you used a print roller for a different effect.  The inking is up very interesting  as there is always an unknown element after its been under the press.  So exciting as all the protective layers are stripped away and you gently peel the dampened paper of the block to either a shocked silence or a little yelp of pleasure.  I am now busy at home making a ‘block’ for the last session – its been a fun experience and pushed me gently along a path I know I want to explore and enjoy much more.

Just wish the weather would cheer up a bit.  But the potatoes are coming through and so are the cabbages and leeks must check on the broad beans.  Indoors my tomatoes seeds have germinated as have the cucumbers and peppers so now I have to nurture them onwards and upwards.  The polytunnel eventually gave up the ghost this winter but we can re-cover it so all will be ready (hopefully) by the time the tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers need to be in their warmer home to grow and produce some wonderful fruits.  I realise with gardening you either love it or tolerate it or hate it. Like  most things I need to get into the mood but once in I love to garden.  For me its a great big adventure playground and in fact this year I am going to put up our big green canvas tent to use as a summer house  plus the barbecue and a mattress and a sleeping  bag and my summer holidays are sorted.  The dog will be delighted! If you want to join me bring a tent  (and the sun) I’ve plenty of room and you’d be very welcome!

having a clear out ….. of the mind

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I suppose it all started with my first major trip by bus. Last week as the tail of the festive season slipped away (thank goodness!) I was left feeling strangely lost with this shiny new year ahead, waving at me with lots of exciting possibilities. But my head just felt woolly and refused to open up. So on Saturday I got the earliest bus to Inverness and went to the booking office to see where I could go. Edinburgh was the first choice and the next thing I knew I was on the Megabus (!) with a pack of sandwiches, a drink, my wonderful Kindle and we were off. The day had it ups and downs but the important thing was I’d done it. I walked my feet off – and feel a renewed acquaintance with an old acquaintance. The bus broke down coming home (much to the drivers annoyance, he was so concerned for us all and his request for another bus wasn’t picked up for at least 20/30 minutes so we were sitting around for 1 hour) but I still got my connection to home. And all in all it was a great success. The visit was totally unstructured and the hardest bit was going to the Museum of Modern Art where I felt the lose of Colins company very acutely. But all has to be faced and dealt with and it gave me that little shove I needed.

It was as I was walking the dog and planning and thinking of my days ahead that I realized how much ‘junk thoughts’ I have accumulated over the years. And the trouble with unstructured, maverick thoughts they tangle and knot and get in the way of clear thinking. So I will be going through my books and tidy my bedroom and sort out the CD’s and, and, and……then there is the garden but I will also not allow these useless junk bits floating about in my mind to clutter up my thinking. There is going to be a lot of DELETE button pushing for those and then when I think well maybe…I will insist YES I do want to delete these FOREVER.SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERA

Just finished this sweater after quite a few adaptions but feel its now OK. Its knitted in machine washable Merino wool which I love its warm and soft. I use this 4 ply yarn for scarves, gloves, jackets and jumpers a lot and also the fine 1 ply Merino wool for bright coloured basically long sleeved vests. It makes the winter much more b(w)earable!  Sorry I think I need my dinner.

I just looked at a preview of this blog and why the top paragraph is in red I have no idea!  Help!