Monday, 30 January 2012

Myreton Hill

Yes. That's right - Hill. As in "uppy bit"

If you look at the Ochils escarpment from the South, Myreton Hill is the third one from the left after Castle Law and Dumyat. 387 Eurometres above Menstrie
A watery sun kept trying to come out. There was a cold breeze. It felt good. Very good.
The jury is still out on the effect on the tootsies, but otherwise everything seemed to function as well as could be expected.
I met  a couple of old codgers ( one who had done all the UK 3000s) and we talked about places and people we had known. Until the snell wind started to take it's toll on malfunctioning circulatory systems..

A cross between a style and a cattle grid ?

Dumyat across Menstrie Glen

Looking East from the cairn

My new flask. Four squid off eBay.

It was that kind of day.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Keep Fit

A cursory scan of the blogosphere shows that Fitness is a topic which is currently "trending" ( is this right ?)

Naturally, I've been doing my bit.

No, don't laugh. This week I have been following a programme specially devised for me by top-style scientists at the Institute of Studies. Instead of weekly or thereabouts splurge-type walks followed by several days recovery, I have been persuaded of the merits of doing shorter walks, but every day.

(A  Sports Scientist writes .. This is utter shite)

And....... it seems to be working for me.

( A Sports Scientist writes .. Actually, opinion is divided on this one)

Since Monday, at least 3 miles every day. Total of 32 miles for the week and about 2000ft of up.
Today's little spin was about 5 miles and 500 ft. Some observations

A few flowers on the gorse

At this point I got the binoculars out and was able to ascertain that, in my absence, the lazy bitch had put the heating on. Why does she think I gave her a scarf for Christmas ?

"Go ask Alice "

At his point I entered a rocky raccoon.
 Wait. I'll just check that on Google. As you were. At this point I entered a rocky ravine

Anyway, Whats that ?
Enough of this rubbish ?
You want what ? A man in a silly hat playing the slow blues on an old Fender ?

Ok. I'll have a look in the cupboard.

Would this do ?


Good cover, but doesn't have  the sharpness or dynamics of the original ( which doesn't seem to be on Utoob).
Nice video, though

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Top Tipz

Shopkeepers. The next time the chaiman of BT calls in to buy a paper, remember to charge him £5.70 to "process" his transaction.

Monday, 23 January 2012

Health and Efficiency

Rather than sit waiting for Bessie Smith to launch into "Gimme a pig foot and a bottle of beer" I decided at the weekend to effn go for it.
In the One Small Step tradition,I started with a warm-up today - into town and back..
Three miles to Tesco  at just under the hour, half an hour shopping and berating a department manager for misleading pricing, and three miles back carrying a rucksack with 9k of groceries ( we're having a dinner party this evening and had inexplicably run out of lard ). Nae bother.
Mainly flat tarmac, with the only" hill " being the 20ft aprox humpy-backit Old Stirling Bridge. Now this is not to be confused with the Stevenson Bridge which carries the A9 today or  Stirling Bridge, The Even Older. The latter is unlikely to cause much confusion, as it no longer exists, but was where William Wallace humiliated the English in the famous Referendum of Stirling Bridge  in 1297. Unfortunately WW was captured by the said English shortly afterwards, probably by some devious sneaky trick. He wasn't best pleased - in fact he was gutted !

I digress.
The tide was coming in as  I crossed the bridge with  that swirling ferocity as the water from the ocean fought against the water from the hills. Strange to think that, until recently, some primitive peoples believed that tides were caused by the moon's gravitational pull. Nowadays, of course, we know it's all done by computers
Demonstrating a hitherto concealed ability to multitask, I am also breaking in my new portable telephone today. Mrs OM has read the instructions and given me a detailed tutorial in switching it on etc. Apparently I don't need to know how to switch it off, as I have to keep it on at all times. With my previous machine (The Shoebox) I would switch it in 3 or four times a day, pick up messages and respond as required, much to the annoyance of the family. I'm afraid I still consider it vulgar to talk on the telephone in public places. Apparently with this new equipment I will be able to post to this blog while tucked up in bed. And also to join Facebook and Twitter. Alternatively I might stick needles in my eyes.

No foties, sorry. Blogger says I have reached my limit and will have to pay to upload more, That will be shining.

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Gates : FAO engineers.

Since I emerged from Sleepy Hollow about 18 months ago, I've noticed a lot of these gates. Galvanised, lever action spring-loaded - very effective. Certainly much better than these old kissing gates where you have to take your rucksack off. They are a bit clangy, and you might find the galvanised finish somewhat obtrusive in the countryside, but for people like me it just makes them easier to find.

Now this is the gate to our local reservoir which I must have used dozens of times.. There is strong resistance when you open it, and it shuts very positively after you, and I had just assumed it was spring-loaded until today when I took a closer look. No spring ! After farting about with it for a while, I can only assume that the secret is the dog-leg arrangement at the bottom which somehow uses the weight of the gate to shut it.. Unless you know different.
(Please show your working. Any drawings should be on a separate sheet of paper)

So yes, I did the Reservoir Round again today.

No red socks this time, just grey Bridgedale Trekkers. And my Crane Thinsulate trousers (99p on eBay) And the shoes that dare not speak their name (unless the manufacturers come up with some goodies !)
For variety this time I went round the loch widdershins

Lovely day, muddy underfoot, a whiff of Spring in the air.



Sunday, 15 January 2012

Global Warming ? Bring it on !

Got the gas bill in yesterday.........

Half last year's for the same period !!!!!!

Now to get the hair-dryer out to defrost Mrs. OM and tell her the good news.

Bet you never thought you'd be singing that when you were 70, Dave. Still got the power.

Friday, 13 January 2012

Wha stole yir scone, son ?

I feel i must post something, lest you start imagining that I have been taken up in a spaceship to an alien planet where I am locked in a  house and expected to copulate with a silicon enhanced porn actress in front of an audience of mutants.
How well Kurt Vonnegut foretold Celebrity Big Brother.

I've been getting around locally, a couple of miles here, five miles there, gradually working up the distance and the ascent. Today I was out and about in lovely crisp January weather on the university campus.
I've posted about this before, but make no apology for doing so again.

What ? You insist ?
"Line in  the sand" "No one person was to blame" "Mistakes have been made" " Lessons have been learned " " Time to move on " "This is the humblest day of my life" "Blah, blah, blah"
Will that do ?

If I might be allowed to continue.
The second of the recent storms (not Hurricane Bawbag - the one after it ) did a lot of damage around here . A lot of trees down on the campus and in the village, and the sound of chain saws and chippers is everywhere.

Swan Central !
It's a pleasant stroll around the loch

This is a memorial to Tom Cottrell, the first Principal and driving force behind the establishment of the University. It's called The Pursuit of Knowledge. I like the concept, but not necessarily the execution. Its a bit too, well, blue for my taste, but then works of art are supposed to challenge.

The Pathfoot Buiding was the first building on site, and now holds the collection of modern Scottish art. Mainly dross, in my opinion, with a few nuggets shining through.

This  stone used to stand in the market square of Pathfoot village and marked the site of a small Tryst or cattle fair. The "Path" in Pathfoot was the then main road from the North coming down off Sheriffmuir and heading for Stirling Bridge.The stone has been moved several times, and, as you can see, during one move it suffered a wee accident.
"Fuxxache, Davie. You've dropped it. We'll aw get oor jotters"
"Wisnae ma faut. It just slid aff the forks, like. It's an auld yin anyway."
"But it's awfy historical"
"Well, noo they've got two historical stanes fur the price o' wan. Result"
"Away ya bam. Look , they might no notice. Willie, run doon tae the workshop and bring me back two o' thae big tubes o' Araldite"

This is Blawloan, The last remaining house in Pathfoot. The inhabitants were traditionally makers and repairers of shoes.
"Cobblers ?"
No, it's true, I tell you. (copyright Benny Hill, circa 1965)

And so, homeward via the paper shop for a Euromillions ticket