Archive for the ‘Botanic Gardens’ Category

‘Methadone, for example, is associated with many deaths but we know that when closely monitored and prescribed, methadone works and people who are on it have a longer life expectancy.’ (Prof Roy Robertson in the Sunday Mail, 21st July 2019)

July 27, 2019

‘Robertson witnessed the explosion in heroin abuse during the early eighties from the clinic in Edinburgh’s Muirhouse where he still works.’

And so, dear listener, hopefully, this will be the last health update for a while but I was at the very pleasant and very sunny Stobhill Hospital the other day. I’d forgotten that my heart consultant, Dr J, had arranged to meet me something like a year previously, to discuss matters pertaining to my heart. 🙂

I say I’d forgotten but luckily those nice people at @nhsscotland hadn’t and I’d been sent a text to remind me. 🙂

It went well. It is now about a year and a half since I’d had the heart scare and I’m glad to say that over that period, thanks to careful monitoring of medication, my blood pressure is slowly coming down. Medical people say that 130 over 54 is good. 😉

She asked if I was had any problem running for buses. I had to explain no as I don’t use buses anyway as they don’t go where I want them to.

‘Good point’, she said, ‘nor do I. What about running up and down stairs?’

And I can certainly go up and down stairs e.g. some of those belters from the River Kelvin up to the Botanic Gardens or Belmont Street.

I was also echoe’d (not sure how to spell that but it seems to be how medical people say it; it’s that ultrasound echo test which bounces pictures of that heart area and gives some details of how leaky my aortic valve is)

Moderate is the answer in a gentle voice. 😀 😀 😀

I was told, and I may have mis-heard this, that the leaflets on my valve should be 1.2mm but that I had 1.3mm on 1.4mm on the other.

‘I can live with that,’ I said.

‘better than the alternative, jt,’ she said.

And we fixed a date for a year’s time. 😀 😀 😀

And Friday night saw me and good friend e going to see Burt Bacharach and his band at the Kelvingrove Bandstand (one violin as opposed to a string section and so on) but they did the business as did the backing singers but the real star is Burt himself.

He tells stories without name dropping (unlike Lulu last year) and he did a full two hours (unlike Lulu last year) and there was the odd wee political hint about his feelings towards Boris and Donald (unlike Lulu who was a great fan of Maggie Thatcher but did sing Shout so she was forgiven)

Burt – you’re a legend. And we even had a sneaky wee Justin Currie thrown in as the support act just in case ‘nothing ever happens.’

Let’s move on.

And one of my neighbours, basically at right angles to me, is building what appears to be a shed or summer house against the fence between us, which is not a problem, but he has covered it with a blue tarpaulin while he constructs it in case it rains.

All well and good, but for all the world it looks like one of those forensic science tents and people on the flight path into Glasgow airport must think there’s been a murder, next door to me.

And finally, there’s been a lot of chat about banning the sale of alcohol at family events such as fairs and highland games (no capitals needed as it’s the generic and not a specific games)….anyway……….the idea apparently is stop children being exposed to the abuse of alcohol.

No. Let’s not prohibit anything unthinkingly but look at our own attitudes. Is it better for children to see pints of lager bout next to soft drinks for children or for them to turn corners and find people surreptitiously bevvying from half bottles?

Tioraidh, still wearing those badges but will maybe transfer them to another jacket and still keeping it simple.

Iaint850, not the man who shot Liberty Vallance

So I had a difficult meeting ahead of me in Paisley on Thursday, one that would normally have worried me, and I took the train there, but it was hi-jacked at Hillington East by a Mad Dog 20/20 squad of teens using the train to get to Troon.

Neither bothered me.

Y’see there’s a few pieces of music which, if I hear them by chance put a smile on my face and in my head. This is one of them and is possibly one of the most played pieces on the show. It has good memories and meaning attached to it. 😀

As I drove to the railway station, a deejay played it on the radio station

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A man could spend his whole life searching for the perfect cherry blossom and it would not be a life wasted.

April 27, 2019

Glasgow’s Botanic Gardens were looking pretty good for blossom the other day. 🙂

And so, dear listener, for a few tears now, Partick Thistle has played a big role in my life. No. That is not a typo. I think many people know what that means.

Okay. It was, but I left it in. 😉

Going to the game on Saturday afternoons was a major part of my recovery in the early days, but even though I am now recovered, I still go and am a season ticket holder in Row 0. I missed much of last season cos of depression* (which was nothing to do with the team) and I’ve missed much of this season because of my sister’s illness and subsequent passing away.

*despite all we read on social media, do we ever ask ‘how’s your depression these days?’ During my sister’s illness I was asked by some, ‘how are you coping?’ which possibly related as much to my use of alcohol, when my mum was going through something the same with the same result, as the depression – but it was nice to be asked. I have a neighbour who is happy to talk about his issues but not everyone does.

Anyway I went back last week and again this week. And was glad I did so. The seats seemed busier where we stand – a new younger team but that’s no bad thing as long as there’s still room for us – and there was. And there was discussion about the merits of individual players but no falling out. There were no smoke flares; nothing thrown on the pitch.

Yesterday (Saturday) I went back and stayed to the botter, bitter end. Life’s like that sometimes.

The language can be a bit crisp and raw – the kind for which, noticeably on the new BBC Scotland channel, the commentator feels the need to apologise. But why? That’s what the real reality of football attending is like and if it makes you feel uncomfortable, then don’t watch. :p

And ships will always be ‘she’ as far as I am concerned.It’s how I was brought up on Peterhead which was a fishing town before it was an oil town and before that the whaling. 😀

And to the Parfery person (always one of my favourite students when she turned up on time); word on the streets says that you’re getting married this coming weekend. I seem to remember a lunchtime conversation in a city centre bar some time ago when you, me and two others, selected ‘targets’. Yours has obviously been a bulls-eye. Well done. 😀

I used to set the journalism students various writing tasks, discuss the results and then do what the SQA required me to do. I set a simple task.

‘Tell me about your sporting hero but avoid the obvious.’

The Parfery person wrote about her dad who followed a different football team from her but ‘not once did he make me try to turn my coat.’

Isn’t that a beautiful line? 😀

And finally the AGM and board meeting of The Word Process took place this week (which is what I used to call my business when it had a website) and it was really well attended. By good friend e and me. 🙂 🙂 🙂

Basically, I will continue to edit and ‘proof-read’ academic essays in the near future –whatever happens financially. I’m taking a wee break after the next three (!) until a PhD in mid-May.

The catering was provided by Firebird down Kelvingrove way and I must stop complaining about the crusts on sourdough bread sandwiches. After all, I was given a knofe and firk.

Iaint850, who realises that if I want to take part in anything on the new BBC Scotland channel I stand a better chance if I describe myself as an ‘activist’.

Tioraidh, still wearing that badge (well two of them on the one jacket) and apparently ‘I’m completely fine’, which might be because I’m almost at the stage I wanted to be in relation to settling my sister’s estate.

The other property’s about to go on the market. So both will soon be with estate agents, which is good, and the other financial stuff will be with the lawyer…….settlement can wait a wee while. I just want to wake up and not think about it.

Except…….

There is still some of her personal stuff to be sorted and I won’t elaborate other than to say there are photos, for example, that meant a lot to her but mean little to me…..they are being disposed of carefully. But I do get some help…..(which sounds like the depression has come back – except it hasn’t) but I looked through some of my own personal stuff the other night.

I call them scrap boxes and I did start to look through them. Interesting but definately only to me (deliberate spelling error so you know I’m Hastings #LOD).

There’s scripts that I wrote for University comedy shows (first time round); there’s stuff my son wrote when he had aspirations to be a journalist; and there’s an article that I had published in the Herald after he and I had been to Legoland in Denmark.

There’s a box with photos (and yes, ‘I do remember the time when …. but wasn’t my hair long and that was in the days when I had proper highlights – a mixture of ash blond and sunny blond’)

And there’s my mother’s season ticket for the Empire Exhibition in 1938 in Glasgow. There’s a badge that goes with that as well. 🙂

Sometimes it’s hard to throw things out, isn’t it?

Memories play a part in tonight’s final piece of music. It’s from the movie Wild Rose, which I’ve not been to see yet (anybody interested? and I promise not to say things like, ‘That’s Julie’ and ‘That’s Phil’) and it’s Jessie Buckley (as Rose-Lynn Harlan) singing Glasgow (No Place Like Home)

I still get wildly enthusiastic about little things… I play with leaves. I skip down the street and run against the wind (Leo Buscaglia)

September 21, 2018

And I still say ‘Wow’ a lot 🙂

And so dear listener I was once a subject tutor for what is now known as the City of Glasgow College (and, indeed, enrolled as a student there last year and seem to have set a trend) and basically enjoyed my time there. 😀 😀

Before the magnificent building in Cathedral Street, it had kinda absorbed various buildings as various campuses including the very lovely Florence Street, which was an old primary school in the Gorbals and which I loved and the, eh, not so lovely Rogart Street which was a throwback to the days of the College of Building and Printing where apprentices learned to paint and build walls; and knock ‘em down again before the end of class so they could be built again by the next class. 🙂

So one day I was sent there for one day a week for ten weeks to teach the floor and wall tilers how to use computers to set out a brochure/flyer to advertise their services. Now, not every tiler wanted to learn how to do this so on that first day I split them into three groups; one was men of a certain age who had never used a computer before and then I showed how to play patience/solitaire thus teaching them how to click’n’drag; one was men of a certain age who just wanted to play pool and snooker on the computer and I managed to persuade them to turn their computers round and to turn the sound down so I wasn’t aware of them; and one was men of a certain age who genuinely wanted to learn and with them I made a good start.

In subsequent weeks, I managed to get them all working and at the end of each lesson they just saved their work to the computer unless they had a floppy disk (and do you think if I’d have used a floppy disk rather than a USB stick, life would be any different?) All was going well until Head Office decided to send a technician down to clean out the computers and eradicated every piece of work – including all the work done by the floor and wall tilers. I managed to stop the near-riot the next week and they all managed to pass. Well that’s what it said in the register so it must be true. 😉

Apparently the Theatre School of Scotland’s new studios are in Rogart Street. Wonder if it’s the same place? Just be careful what walls you lean against.

And talking of tilers….I did go to the dentist this week and, for the first time for a long time, I have serious work to do on my teeth and, in a similar vein, the Roads people have patched up the holes in my street and tell me permanent work will be carried out before the end of the financial year. So, several gaps being filled all at one go. 😉

(And, with absolutely no connection to anything else, it was exactly seven years ago that I started at UWS (Paisley) which was an amazing experience for soooooo many reasons (soooo many brilliant people) and the training for suicide intervention I was talking about last week is ASIST)

And finally, it seems that whilst the rest of the world measures typhoons, hurricanes and strong winds in miles per hour we, in Scotland, measure it in trampolines. I heard Scotrail spokespeople, weather forecasters and TV and radio presenters use it but Jackie Bird seemed uncertain when she heard it.

Dear listeners, a least one trampoline and an unharmed dog went viral this week but this is still the original and the best from Hurricane Bawbag of six (?) years ago, I give you ‘OMG Trampoline’

Tioraidh, still wearing that badge and quietly keeping it simple

Iaint850, and I’d describe myself as an ‘erotic spasm’ if only Vince Cable would tell me what it means.

So I’m very proud of something I did this week – on Wednesday, Storm Ali day. I’d given up on getting a train out of Queen Street Station and took the subway to Hillhead expecting to get a taxi up the road to the ASDA, Summerston but there were no taxis at any rank. I then thought about going through the Botanic Gardens and walking along the Walkway and slipping through a shortcut (somebody’s garden) to get to the Maryhill Road but the Gardens were locked (worries about trees falling over) So I just kept walking and it’s worth a wee look at a map. I did okay. At one point, going up the hill that is Sandbank Street, I was aware of my heart but decided that was a good sign and kept going. And then I got blown into a bush and it was then that I saw a train drawing into Summerston Station. They were still running after all. 😦

So this is a piece of music for me. It’s in black and white but it is the karaoke version, so please feel free to sing along.