Last week's Veg Box - artistically arranged for your delight
So it came to pass that a business was set up to deliver veg boxes on the island.
It sounded perfect: You pay £7.50 per week and a whole load of lovely ethically grown veggies turn up on your doorstep on a Friday night, delivered by smiling youngsters. You cook the beautiful veggies. Everyone gets their five a day. And we all live happily ever after, right?
Before I'd discovered some of the fab fashion and make up blogs that I now follow, I thought that AW10 was just another post code. NOT SO, mes amies!
It also stands for Autumn Winter 2010 in fashion parlance and, although, I live so far away from the bright lights of fashion that they are not even a dull glow on the horizon, I've been boning up on what's in (thank you Fashion's Most Wanted, Mrs Fab, Mrs TNMA, LLG, Wildernesschic et al).
Why? you may ask yourself. And Tertarus DID ask himself that - unfortunately aloud - a few weeks back and at the time I didn't have an answer, other than to slam a couple of doors on my way out.
Dark Skies over Scotland - cos no bugger lives here
I was somewhat surprised to to discover that not only am I a goddess of home and hearth, I also appear to be a large, dark main belt asteroid. No jokes. Hestia is, in fact, the head honcho of the Hestia asteroid clump. I was discovered by N. R. Pogson on August 16, 1857.
This is uncannily close to my birthday. Obviously, not the same YEAR though.
Yesterday I went for an inadvertent jog. You wouldn't think that such a thing could exist, but it does - especially when you've forgotten to pack your son's lunch into his backpack.
I hurried up the hill to school and handed over the offending articles to a very surprised Sonshine.
The sun beat warm on my face and I when I realised that I'd put on my jogging bra (the one with more wiring that the Clifton Suspension Bridge) AND my running shoes, why, I took it as a SIGN that I should be MOVING and I headed off at a goodly trot towards Loch Fad.
It took me just under an hour to get down to the Loch and then back up home through the park - mainly because I kept stopping to admire the view and eat berries. OK - I was totally puffed out, I admit it. But, it was so stunningly beautiful, I knew that I'd have to share it with you.
And so, dear reader, I went back again, this morning with m'camera - and only one lens. Which was a mistake. I should have put in my wide-angle lens, but let's just assume that I've only got the one lens - and this is it.
As I walked, fragments of this poem came to mind, so I've mashed it up with my pics. Hope you like it. Created with Animoto web-based software, if you use this link below and end up taking out a subscription with them, I earn $5 towards my next subscription :-)
The Road Not Taken - by Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that, the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference
As a 'sorry' to Sonshine for his dad going back to work/hiding the remote control helicopter, I agreed that he could watch The Biggest Loser until 9pm with me last night.
We quite enjoy this weekly foray into the mad ranch where unfortunate overweight Americans are subjected to the neo-Nazi tendancies of Gillian and the Man. The Man seems quite nice, but Gillian has got the dead eyes of a shark. Or worse, the dead eyes of a TV presenter Who Will Get Her Team to Weep on Telly At Any Cost.
I logged on this morning to discover that I'd been tagged by the lovely Ruth (Wildernesschic) over at Life The Universe and All That's In It AND Santa over at Being Joan! Thank God they're both asking the same questions or I'd be wired to this thing 24:7!
1. At what time of your life were you happiest and why? I think that I was probably happiest at University. Why? Because I had no real worries (only boys and where my next meal was coming from!) and my whole life lay before me like some undiscovered continent. EVERYTHING was possible and it was very exciting. Those were the days when I could just waltz into a shop and pick a size and not need to worry about how big my bits were going to look!
2. Where and when did you meet the love of your life?
Oh - I couldn't possibly divulge that!!! Would you settle for where and when did I meet Tertarus instead?!? Secondary school. He was a bit dangerous - had a motorbike and smoked the odd spliff. But I knew that he was a nice guy who also went shopping for little old ladies. A winning combo, so I scooped him up one night when he was a bit the worse for wear ..... and he has been mine pretty much ever since ;-)
3. Favourite item of clothing ever or most treasured possession?
Not really got a favourite item of clothing, but my most 'treasured possession' is my collection of letters, correspondences between Tertarus and myself that date back to the early 80s.
I'm not including Sonshine or the hamster - that's a given that they are treasured beyond even diamond earrings lol!
4. Must have makeup or beauty item?
It has to be my eyebrow powder. I could go out without any make up on at all, but would be utterly naked without my eyebrows filled in a bit. Ah - sparse eyebrows are one of the signs of aging that they don't tell you about :-)
5. What do you think is your worst vice or fault .. honestly?
I have so many! I think the most debilitating one is that I set the bar too high for people. I expect people to do their best all the time. Which is so silly!!! In my defence, I am as critical to myself as I am on others. This results in quite a lot of quite unnecessary disappointment for me and miles of self-critical inner monologuing. Wonder what my friends would say was my worst vice?!
6. Would you tell your friend, if you knew her husband/wife was cheating on her/him?
It would depend a lot on several variables 1) how certain I was of the facts 2) the state of my friend's relationship with said spouse and 3) whether I felt that any interfering on my part would be worth the inevitable fall out that would incur down the line....somewhere, for her/him/me.
7. What ambitions, wishes or desires, for your life, do you still hold close to your heart?
I'd really love to write a novel - nothing too heavy! I keep starting it and then abandoning it because I think I'm shit. See 5 above lol!
8. Where do you see yourself in five years from now? You know how above I said the rest of my life stretched before me like an exciting, uncharted continent? Well, now a goodly part of it has been charted, and some of those damned rivers you can't paddle back down...so in 5 years time, I guess I'll still be here, worrying about being a good parent, trying to keep on top of the garden, fretting about my weight and having good times with my family and friends - God willing!
Rather surprisingly, for me, it also flew when Tertarus was home this leave. Six weeks leave. And now he is gone.
We drove him down to the ferry this evening, which we hardly ever have to do. He usually drives himself to the first ferry of the day and abandons the car at the pier for me to pick up later.
In fact, the last time he left on an evening ferry was before Christmas 2009. As Sonshine and I drove back down the pier, I turned the radio on.....only to hear The Soldiers singing 'Coming Home'....and what with it being Christmas, me being pre-menstrual yet AGAIN, the thought of not seeing Tertarus again until the end of January, soldiers singing about coming home from war....I was soon snottering into the steering wheel with Sonshine patting my head and crying too.
Of course, as soon as I got home, I was FINE and promptly forgot all about it. But when Sonshine was staying with his gran at the beginning of July, he happened to mention to her that the saddest thing that had ever happened to him was when I cried after dropping his daddy at the ferry that Christmas.
Juno duly passed this information on to me with a warning that I needed to be more careful around Sonshine, which I have taken on board.
So this evening after we dropped Tertarus, I made sure we left without any backward glances and kept the goddamned radio OFF. I kept up a good stream of inane chatter as I drove home....but when I glanced in the rear-view mirror, there were two big hot tears rolling silently down Sonshine's face.
Bloody hell! What should I do? Emergency Brightness? Mummy Hugs???!!! Where the fuck are the parenting manuals when you REALLY need them?
We pulled into the driveway and I huckled myself into the backseat with him and gave him a big hug, as if I could squeeze away his sadness.
'Daddy will be home in October,' I said, in as positive a voice as I could muster up.
'I know,' nodded Sonshine.
'Just think - we can watch The Biggest Loser and America's Next Top Model without the channel being changed, mid episode, to Men and Motors!'
'I know,' he said, sniffing.
'So, although we're going to miss Daddy, we're going to have lots of fun, just our two selves, aren't we?' I asked, scanning his face for the slightest trace of a smile.
'I'll be fine mummy. I'm just crying because Dad's gone and he's hidden the remote control helicopter.'
Picture the scene, I have written my list of supermarket requirements for the coming week and am now standing in the first aisle of the Co-op....the chiller section of the fruit and veg aisle.
Muttering: Right - beans.....beans......ah here they are........hmmmm - so there's a pack from Kenya or a pack from Holland. OK - the ones from Holland are certified organic (casts an eye down to the price box) and that explains the price. They look nice though.
I pick up the Kenyan packet. Ah - these are less expensive, and also look nice. BUT they're not organic. Ah - and of course, they are from much further away, so there are all those air miles to consider.......Holland is a lot closer to us, so less air miles.
Decided to delete the post about The Queen of The Inch and Jimmy Reid because Thursday's Reporting Scotland is no longer available.
Also, caught a mouse in the zap trap. I got a bit weepy and Tertarus got a bit Asbergers again - expressing utter bewilderment that I could be weepy over the loss of a single mouse when millions are homeless and at risk of disease in Pakistan. I tried to explain that weeping for one does not preclude weeping for the other.
Also - been out for dinner. We 'shared' the driving and again cannot understand my dark mood. In his opinion, It IS sharing the driving when he drives there, gets bladdered and I am compelled to stay sober and drive back.
Sonshine has gone for an overnight with the other family at the dinner. I'll need to dynamite his underwear off him tomorrow evening....
After 6 weeks of lying about in front of the Wii and other assorted things that make your eyes go square and your brains turn to custard, Sonshine has returned to school.
Predictably anxious about it last night, I soothed him as best I could by reminding him that his favourite teacher to date was the one he was most apprehensive about. Everything would be fine, I assured him, as I pulled the duvet up around his chin and kissed him on the forehead.
Cut to today. He came home from school and threw his bag down in the hall and sprawled on the stairs, his arms over his face. Not a good sign.
If you are feeling a bit blue, take a look at A Doctor's View and you will perk back up again. I had wanted to make JohnB one of the recipients of the recent Beautiful Blogger award meme, but he'd given up at that point - I think I'm the only commenter on his blog! Despite that, he came back to blogging. I think that if he gets a few more followers and more than just Hestia commenting on his blog, he will keep going!
A Doctor's View is written by a retired medical scientist (this lifted from his blog bio) who lives in a village in Somerset with assorted rabbits, foxes, badgers, moles, pheasants and other wildlife including a wife, but no dog and no God. John B says: 'My first blog is a letter to God which I wrote many years ago when I was a medical student. He didn't reply.'
Despite of a come-back worthy of Lazarus, Wilfred (the decapitated sunflower) quickly succumbed to his inevitable fate. He is now being recycled on the compost heap. I can confirm that there was a suitable period of mourning that involved a Jeff Buckley CD and a small glass of cider.
My elderly vine made a rapid recovery from the Greenhouse Butchery Episode and continues to shoot out utterly pointless green leafy stuff and not a single grape. Next year I'll have to do SOMETHING with it to make it 'useful'. Like grow beans through it or something. Or Tertarus will be wielding the axe......
Finally, dear reader, you will be delighted to know that Kevin still lurks safely in the bread bin.
Back on Tuesday as I must brave the mainland on Monday xxxx
Although I was visited by a couple of girlfriends yesterday - both bearing gifts - and protesting very weakly as I foisted Kitkats and Posh Coff (ie filter coffee) upon them, I admit to being a bit disappointed with Tertarus going out on his bike.
He growled back down the driveway around 5pm and asked me what I'd done all day. 'A spot of ironing, a bit of blogging, read some blogs, had coffee with the girls...the usual'.
'What did you have for your lunch?' he asked, rolling his motorbike into the garage as I tagged along at the back like a wet weekend in Margate. I told him: a cheese toastie.
'I had langoustines, sitting in the sun on the seafront at Oban.'
The clouds above my wet weekend head burst open and I was soon soaked in self-pity. 'Oh. Nice.' There is nothing, dear reader, more pathetic than a 48 47 year-old woman, on her birthday, standing in her ripped slippers, in the driveway, listening to her husband bang on about what a great day he's had. Without her.
A loud rap at the bedroom door startles me away from the delightful charms of the arms of Morpheus and a dream about being at a party consisting of hundreds of men and discovering my mini stuck inside a fancy apartment block. I awaken groggily - last night I was out with the girls and I feel rougher than the skin on Pat Butcher's heels. I feel a nameless anxiety bubble to the surface with me as I float away from the Land of Nod and up to conciousness. What IS it? Oh God. No. It's my.....
'HAPPY BIRTHDAY MUMMY!!!!' choruses Sonshine as he bursts into the bedroom with my birthday cards and pressie.
We've been in Glasgow for a few days. Here's how it panned out:
0 - The number of bedrooms in the accommodation that had mysteriously been allocated for us, when we'd asked for two. We had no option but to take the studio flat (double bed and fold down double sofa) for the night with the hope that things could be straightened out in the morning. When Sonshine went to bed, so did we....
The good news is that they have caught two kids (17 and 16) for breaking into the Swimming Pool and stealing booze from an earlier break in at the Sailing Club. That'll teach them to swig vodka by the neck during a break in (guys had form, saliva on bottle gave the whole game away).
Anyhoo, I digress....
I should be typing to you this evening from a 2-bedroom mews cottage in Glasgow. One bedroom should be en suite and the other, with bunks, should have Sonshine bouncing around happily with his DS and Big Bunny.
Sadly, when we turned up, the caretaker had notification that we had booked a studio flat. That means a double bed in the same room as the TV and music equipment. Even the printed out e-mails correspondence clearly showed that I wanted to book the 2-bed mews cottage. How the fuck that transposed into a studio flat, I have no idea.
So I am typing at the dining table while Tertarus and Sonshine watch Ice Age 3 on the DVD. When he goes to bed, we'll be folding down the sofa into a bed and hoping for a reasonable night's kip.
And tomorrow, I will be my usual polite self - but if I don't end up talking to you from a 2-bed mews cottage there will be BLOODY HELL to pay.
Is Mercury retrograde? Cos it feels like it. Plus, the battery on my mobile has died again and the only reading material I have brought is the endless Wolf Hall. Not exactly light relief!
On the upside, bought a beautiful rioja from M&S called Marques del Romeral which is rubbing the edges off my day nicely.
Tomorrow I get Juno's newly remodelled ring resized to fit ME. We go to the Stained Glass supplier in East Kilbride to get stuff for me to start practicing the big panel for the front door and take Juno out for lunch.
Did anyone see my the programme about Calum's Cabin today on telly? Was it just in Scotland? Also, did anyone see the Marquis of Bute's home wedding video on Friday night? My home island is just bursting out of the telly!
Sonshine was 10 earlier this week. I had organised a party for him at our local swimming pool - long before the school broke up for the summer hols back in June.
Today, the morning of the party (and after I'd spent a goodly sum on nutritionally useless party food in Tescos) the Pool staff phoned me to say that there had been a break-in at the pool and lots of broken glass in the water. The pool would need to be drained and cleaned....the party was off.
Sonshine turned 10 on earlier this week and all he wanted as a present was a hamster. At £8.50 a throw (poor choice of phrase) a hamster seemed like a brilliant deal. I could, I thought, spend the surplus Parental Birthday Present Money on a nice pair of shoes. For myself.
But before we could take a small rodent home, we first had to deal with the regular battle of wills between myself, my son and my mother.