3 Beautiful Things – Scottish Edition

I’m at my parents house:

1. Catching up with my mum over whisky and water from the stream as we walk up the hills behind the house

2. Lobster, mussels and asparagus for dinner cooked by mum (we always have lobster when I come home – it’s a tradition…)

3. Lunch at the Ailean Craggan – the drive there, the food, the atmosphere, the service and then the drive back through some wonderful places (Aberfedly, Grandtully, Pitlochry etc.)

It’s Still Broken…

I called the manufacturer today and managed to speak to someone sensible.
“Yes, I understand, it stopped working after only a few days. Not a problem, we will call your mother and arrange for a replacement to be delivered direct to her address and to pick up the faulty unit. I’m sorry she had so many problems trying to get through to customer services.”

So, within 48-hours, the manufacturer will arrange a replacement. Alledgedly.

We’ll see. Customers expectations are rarely met by customer service teams. There’s still¬†a long way to go.

3BTs – WFH, weekend away and new baby…

1). Working from home when the sun is shining. The patio doors are open so I can here the birds singing, my music is playing in the background and I am getting through more here.

2). Planning for a weekend away. What I need, what I’ll do and how I will spend my time.

3). My neighbour’s new baby. Born on Monday this week and just so cute – despite the difficult birth (and subsequent c-section).

“It’s Broken, What Do I Do Now?”

Oh dear…
Mum has managed, somehow, to break her iPod dock. It’s not getting power to the display or to play the iPod. She’s heartbroken. Her woes were conveyed down the the phone much exasperation at what do do now…and what could I do to fix it. (I live about 500 miles away from my parents!). After much discussion, Mum contacted the number in the booklet (that came with the device), waited 20 mins for some chap to tell her she needs to contact her retailer before getting in touch with the manufacturer…I bought it from the manufacturer direct!
Nevermind. We’ll get there eventually. I am going back to Mum’s soon for a long(er) weekend so I’ll sort it out then.

So, the drive to mum’s will consist of over 500 miles in the new car…longest journey yet. Two fills of petrol (from empty both times?). Two litres of water for me. And possibly several soya lattes along the way! One 9-hour playlist on the iPod – just to make sure… And, for the first part of the journey – factor 15. The roof will definitely be up by the time I get half way through the journey ūüėÄ And, by the time I get to mum’s I’ll need to find a fleece, woolly socks and a hat!

One of the funniest trips to see my parents involved leaving London at 35 degrees – roof down, factor 15 and still getting sunburnt. By the time I got as far as Edinburgh, where I filled up with petrol, I had to find jeans, socks, proper shoes, and a fleece before I could fill the car – I was shaking so much as it was only 12 degrees…

The forecast for here on Friday is: 25 and sunny intervals
The forecast for there on Friday is: 13 and heavy rain

B*****¬†I may need to find my wellies…

Weekend Walking

Weekend Walking

The weekend has come and gone again. This weekend was about friends, food, fun and getting out to play with the new toys.

Saturday was good fun. Friends over in the afternoon for a barbeque (and football on the TV, some kind of cup match, I think!), little babies, bigger babies and sleepy friends.¬† We ate, drank, laughed, talked, ran around after the little one and chased the cats. In between all of this the boys watched the football and were disappointed by a less than mediocre game…

¬†Yesterday, up and out before 10am (yes, on a Sunday)…to take the new toys into the Devil’s Punch Bowl – to play. Several hours later, lots of walking done, and lots of photos taken, we headed home to play some more. The weather was fabby, although not hot, the sun was shining through.

¬†The new toys are fab. Lots more practice is needed by me though ūüėČ But, my fitness levels have gone soooooo low! Need to get out more!

It’s the Weekend!

The end of the week. The weekend. Fun. Rest. Relaxation. Most importantly…a break from work.

At lunch today I went to the golf range with one of the guys and had a bit of a laugh. Imagine…long’ish hair, not tied back, jeans, golf shoes and a bag of clubs… It was interesting. One of the things about golf is that you need to be able to see (funny that) and I couldn’t. I’d forgotten my hair clip (it was on my desk!)
Nevermind, it was a fun way to spend a lunch time. Managed to hit 80+ balls – some straight, some off the side of the bay :-(, some over 150 yards…but nothing major. No matter how many times I go to the range, it’s no match for actually playing on a proper course. Where at the range you’ve got a smooth tee and a perfect line from your tee off point, the golf course has rough, fairway, trees, water hazards and sometimes a strong side wind (plus other obstacles to overcome). It’s time to play again and see how badly I do playing a grown up course…the problem is finding someone who’ll play with me AND put up with my language as a swear my way around 18 holes of missed shots, duffed drives, sliced hits etc…

Anyone for golf?

The weekend will hopefully bring lots of social stuff…people over for a BBQ, playing with the new toy (!) and maybe a game of golf…?
We’ll see.

What ever happens, it’s got to be fun!

3 Beautiful Things – sheets, strawberries, and diversity

1.¬†¬†¬†Crisp, white, cotton sheets – freshly laundered. Nothing like them after a bath for an early night…

2.   English strawberries, eaten on their own, as they were meant to be

3.   Mixed groups of friends chatting at a party Рdiverse interests, personalities and backgrounds

Better Late Than Never!

So, it arrived. Mum’s ‘iPod thing’ as she’s taken to calling it…
And, she’s delighted. I asked her if she wanted me to bring my external disk (with my music on) so that I could change the song listing and she said…’I’ve only played the first 100 songs so far’. It seems my mum thinks she has to listen to the iPod in shuffle mode, listening to the songs it chooses for her.
I think I need to give her another lesson in using ‘this new fangled technology’…!!!

You have to laugh at this…

Biking…

Or rather the lack of it.

I managed to get out after work a couple of times recently. The sun was shining and the evenings, well, not quite balmy, but a darn sight warmer than this /last week. It rained all weekend…and it’s raining today. What this means to the inner biker…? That the country park across the motorway from me is going to be one big quagmire and it’s not remotely attractive! But,¬†it’s a great place to go – when it’s not just mud.

The first time I took my bike there (a new bike) I got it stuck in about two foot of mud. I ended up covered in mud, sprayed with mud and with blobs of the stuff all over the bike!¬† Last time I went there – my not so shiny bike performed really well – but it was a different ‘ride’ altogether. The paths dry and bumpy, the gravel bits really good fun at speed ūüėȬ† and no mud. I improved my time around my favourite circuit and managed not to fall off! ‘Granny gears’ played an important part in the really steep bit up to the viewpoint…but I still feel the need to get off, before I fall off!! (Will I ever feel confident enough about not falling off¬†going up¬†steep hills???).

Oh well – tonight?
The driving range maybe…? Yoga? Got to do something!

Recycling…

You know what it’s like, you’ve collected your things together, loaded the car and you feel good that you’re making the positive move to recycle paper, card, glass, foil, plastic, cans and even clothes.¬† But, you get to the local site to find it overflowing! Why is that?

¬†Our council tax has increased in recent years to bring better availability for recycling and an increase in the number of local sites – yet nine times out of ten you can’t recycle because the site hasn’t been properly maintained. (Option 1:¬†get in the car drive to another site, option 2: get in the car drive home and unload again option 3:dump it at the site anyway option 4: get in the car and take it to the dump…). The common thing here is getting in the car and driving again…ooh, an even bigger carbon footprint when the effort was aimed at the opposite@*&!!~@@!!!!

I visit the site once a week with as much recycling as possible. I’ve just ordered a composting bin so that I can reduce my landfill contribution even further… And, it seems many other people in my little area of Surrey are doing the same.

Where’s the same commitment from the council?

Where I lived previously, the council collected all our recycling excluding glass but including garden waste. Here…it’s a different matter. The council collects paper. Oh, but for an extra fee you can buy a brown bin and they will offer a “garden” waste colletion.

So, the council tax countinues to increase and still I have to find extra cash to be able to do my bit for recycling… Shouldn’t we be encouraged to do more??