Reelin’ In the Years 121: Sailing

The song was written by Gavin Sutherland and Rod Stewart later had a big hit with his version but this is the original.

I actually saw The Sutherland Brothers and Quiver playing live in Glasgow just after they’d had a couple of hits.

The Sutherland Brothers Band: Sailing

Edinburgh’s Art Deco Heritage 15: Narcissus, London Road

It took ages for me to get a photo of this without any vehicles in it. At first there was always a van in the way and cars were moving past:-

Narcissus, Edinburgh

After walking on a bit and coming back I got this. Shame about those bins:-

Narcissus, London Road, Edinburgh.

There’s a good art deco feel to the door surround and to the lettering above:-

Doorway, Narcissus, Edinburgh.

Latest Interzone Stuff

 The Paper Menagerie cover
 Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-Eight Nights cover

On Monday morning Interzone’s issue 264 dropped through the letter box. This one contains two of my reviews, a normal length one of Ken Liu’s collection The Paper Menagerie and other stories and a shorter one of City of Blades by Robert Jackson Bennett.

Meanwhile, waiting for me on my return from the continent was a copy of Salman Rushdie’s Two Years Eight Months and Twenty-Eight Nights, review to be delivered by the end of the month.

A Science Fiction Jigsaw

I picked this up in a sale in January. Great 1950s SF feel to the box cover:-

Jigsaw Box

The actual jigsaw inside the box was different to the illustration on the box, being a representation of the game you could play using the printed paper (and counters and die provided) inside without making up the jigsaw. Again a 1950s SF feel:-

Jigsaw

Gold Postbox, Dunblane

Dunblane is of course the childhood home of tennis player Andy Murray.

As a result of his 2012 Olympic tennis win the town is now the proud host to a gold-painted postbox.

Dunblane Postbox 2

Dunblane Postbox 1

My photo of the wording is a bit blurred I’m afraid. The lower portions are written in Braille:-

Dunblane Postbox Wording

The Things You Miss When You’re Away

As I’ve been away I only caught up with the news of the demotion of East Stirlingshire from the SPFL late yesterday.

61 years in the SFL/SPFL gone in a flash. It’s sad for them but they’ve been living on fumes for seasons on end now. It was always most likely that it would be the Shire that would be the first to fall victi to the play-off system.

Congratulations, though, to Edinburgh City. The role of third (or fourth) largest football side in Edinburgh has been taken in the past by St Bernard’s (defunct since World War 2) and Leith Athletic (demised 1955, reconstituted 1996 and as a senior team in 2008.) As those statistics suggest, surviving in the shadow of Hearts and Hibs is not easy.

Then there is the case of Meadowbank Thistle (Ferranti Thistle as was) admitted to the Scottish Football League in 1974 but weren’t satisfied with the sizes of crowds they were attracting in the capital and decamped to Livingston in 1995.

Speaking of Hibs, I see they managed to muck things up again. Hibsing it indeed. Then again they’ll probably win the Cup Final now and so put to an end the longest running “will this be the year” saga in Scottish football.

Leicester City’s fairy tale first top level title made the news in The Netherlands – as elsewhere I suspect. There was a newspaper article there about the length of time previous winners of their country’s football championship had been waiting to win it again. Schalke 04 topped the list at well over 20,000 days with Tottenham Hotspur second (also over 20,000 days.) Liverpool were about eighth on the list. I can just about make out some Dutch but a list is no problem.

I also divined from a radio report on the way back up that Roberto Martinez had lost the Everton job, paying the price for not getting enough out of a talented group of players. (An alternative possibility is that those players aren’t quite as good as their reputations would have them.)

And then there was the Scottish Parliament election, where the SNP paid the price of winning too many constituency seats and Labour actually did come second in the percentage vote in that element but not in the regional lists. We had voted by post before we left.

Away Days

My most recent posts have been rather focused on photographs. This is because I’ve been away. Myself and the good lady have been in The Netherlands again and this time also in Belgium.

We drove down through England (and back up again) to and from the ferry and through the Netherlands and Belgium top to bottom and back. I’m a bit knackered.

But…… I have seen Ypres (nowadays spelled Ieper) and the Menin Gate where we witnessed the nightly Last Post. We walked along the Menin Road, a place I had only ever read about or seen in photographs in a shell shattered state, passing Hellfire Corner on the way.

The hotel we stayed in was right beside the Hooghe Crater and across the Menin Road from the Hooge Crater Commonwealth War Cemetery (note the British spelling.) Right by the hotel there was an open air Great War Museum which encompassed the crater and some trench remnants. The Front Line straddled that part of the Menin Road from 1915-1917. Hooghe was where the first use of flame throwers in a concerted action took place when the Germans made an attack on July 30th 1915. The trenches were apparently only 4.5 meters (4.9 yards) apart there. The flamethrower’s maximum range was 18 meters (20 yards.)

Strange to think I slept only a few more meters away from the spot. It’s all so peaceful there now but reminders of that war are everywhere as the area is covered in War Cemeteries and Memorial sites – too many for us to visit them all.

Odd Moss Outgrowths

We occasionally take a walk through some housing nearby. I noticed these peculiar toadstool-like growths of moss on one of the roofs:-

Moss on Roof (i)

They’re also a bit like small fir trees:-

Toadstool-shaped Moss

Last Year’s Cygnets

In November we visited Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy again.
At least three of the cygnets were almost fully grown:-

Cygnets, Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy, Nov 2015 1

Cygnets, Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy, Nov 2015 2

Or was it four?:-

Cygnets, Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy, Nov 2015 3

Scotland’s Art Deco Heritage 13 (iv): Perth Yet Again

We were in Perth for a meal with our youngest and his fiancée (the wedding is in July) and parked in a car park I’d never used before; in Speygate. I couldn’t help noticing this building at the corner of Speygate and Canal Street.

Speygate aspect:-

Art Deco Corner Building, Perth

From Canal Street. Good curve, flat roof, with embellishment. Pity the windows have been replaced:-

Perth Art Deco Style Building

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