May 27, 2004

4 pints

I’ve finished my b&w photography course. I passed the written test, and I submitted three prints last night for the practical part of my exam. I should hear in a couple of weeks how I do.

I took digital photos of a couple of prints that I didn’t submit (as they weren’t good enough) but I framed them anyway so you could see….



We went out after the class last night to have one beer together for the end of semester. I was in charge of dinner last night because Michelle was returning from Southampton, so I called her to join us. Only fair, as it was 9pm and she was waiting for dinner. Anyway, 1 beer turned into 4 pints and a doner kebab on the way home at 1am.

It was a good night. Along with getting a whole list of websites where I can buy chemicals, film and paper at reduced rates, we spoke of photography, politics, and social issues. It was actually nice to go out with a new bunch of people and
hear different perspectives on issues that are generally quite close to home.

I’ll keep printing and developing, and go back in September to learn some more techniques from David (my teacher).

And now, I’m running late. Christine arrives in 45 minutes and I have to unload the dishes, repack the dishwasher and run for the bus to go meet her!

We’re off tomorrow to Orkney. See you soon.

filles at 11:54 am

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May 25, 2004


I’m in the darkroom all day today, so you can amuse yourself with Michelles hillwalking pictures that are now up. Just go here.

filles at 8:51 am

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May 24, 2004

Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday dear Christine & Michelle,
Happy Birthday to you

Hip Hip Hooray!
Hip Hip Hooray!

P.S. I think it’s better that you just imagine my singing…. that way you can imagine it in tune!

filles at 3:47 pm

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May 23, 2004


Q: Between us we have 1 VERY sunburnt face, 2 very sunburnt necks, 1 sore back, 2 sore hips, 4 sore knees, and 1 major blister on a right foot. WHY?

A: That’s right. The monthly hillwalk was yesterday.

Michelle did a walk from somewhere in the middle of nowhere, up 3 Corbetts (yes that’s right, 3) taking her about 7 hours (a corbett is between 762 and 914 meters high). Me I walked from Kingshouse Hotel to Inveroran Hotel, up and down a few hills, the highest only 637 meters, but still – a total of 19kms (that’s 12 MILES). The highlights being the pub at the start, the icecream just before the last hill, and the pub at the finish.

Michelle calls it fun. I don’t say much at all. Although despite the hard work, it was actually a very beautiful walk yesterday. The weather was just glorious, and the trail was lovely. Part of my walk was on the West Highland Way which is quite a popular walk. Only 152kms (95 miles) long, about 50,000 people walk it each year. That’s by choice. Up and down hills. Funny people the Scots. They love to walk, they do it everywhere. You can actually tell though, the majority have quite nice backsides. And that’s not my opinion alone, surprisingly, I’ve heard the same comment from a few tourists…

Today we were at the golf course by 8.15am. Only one of us was awake. Guess who?

This afternoon, we’ve been limping, creaking, cursing and shuffling about between Air Organic for lunch, ASDA and a search for a gas station with a vacuum to prepare the car for Christines visit (only 4 dodo’s to go!).

A cup of Caro and then I’m gonna hit the pillows. I’m looking forward to Monday to get some rest while the rest of you go to work.

P.S. here are some photos taken by Michelle from her walk. I’ll post the rest in the photo journal tomorrow.

filles at 10:55 pm

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May 21, 2004


I’m just back from the darkroom. And during my walk home, I’ve been fantasizing about photography as a career change….

Not big time or anything. Just kind of ‘on the side’ kind of stuff. To supplement my non-existent income!

I really enjoy it. I admit it was a bit tough at first. ALL my photos were crap. But I think I’m getting the hang of it now, you might even say that I’ve started to get some nice pictures! I’ve always wanted to be a portrait photographer, particularly for kids, you know, replace those horrible SEARS photos and take some decent pictures for families at Christmas time. There’s no reason why everyone should be subjected to fake smiles when they open their Christmas cards!

Anyway… I have a long way to go. But with my new membership, and my learning curve on the upswing, who knows!

p.s. Membership has it’s advantages. Apparently there is plenty of free booze at gallery openings… and with a new opening every 2-3 weeks, that should keep us off the streets (or on them, depends how you look at it…)

filles at 5:58 pm

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May 20, 2004

Busy busy

I’m a bit behind today.

Trip changes have been made, we’re no longer going to the Lakes District, but the Peak District instead. Flights are booked.

Almost impossible to get a reservation for a restaurant in the Merchant City tonight. So we’re going here to the Corinthian, for the first time with Hubert..

Its Hillwalking day on Saturday and I have to start getting organised…

Christine arrives in less than a week!!!@$!@

I nearly set myself on fire today making a potato salad. Stupid gas burner! but the recipe looks good, potato, watercress, tomatos with a blue cheese dressing. That’s lunch for tomorrow…

I am now a member of Street Level Photoworks here in Glasgow. I have the darkroom booked for tomorrow – I have to finish my prints for my course….

… and i’m never gonna get everything finished on time…..

filles at 4:53 pm

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May 19, 2004

blatant inuendo

You have to see this video! This was a childrens TV Show from the 70’s and 80’s called Rainbow. Thanks to the following sites Bridget Who? and Keenaschips who led me to it and host it…

I can’t believe they got away with it! Imagine the fun they had making it….

filles at 11:40 pm

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south central west england (kind of!)

Today I’m putting together the final leg of Christines trip here in Britain. The plan is to depart from Keswick in the Lakes District on Sunday 13th June by train spending 4 nights getting to London for the 17th. There is so much to see and do we’ve decided to concentrate in one area.

Certainly we will go to Oxford and wander amongst the intellectuals and their forebearers, before heading out to Bath to visit one of the most beautiful cities in England, then the medieval town of Salisbury, Stonehenge (almost at summer solstice time), Avebury stones and any other curious crop circles or white horses we might come across.

I’m knee deep in train and bus timetables, hotel info and the like.

Apart from that, I have an interview today to get my social insurance number for my very very part part time job, and my photography exam is tonight. I’ve found my notes, now I just have to sit down and read them….

It’s not so bad. How hard could it be?

filles at 1:39 pm

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May 18, 2004

No. 16 Byres Rd

We were treated to a meal last night by Michelle’s Montreal boss, who was in town, along with two of her ex co-workers from Montreal. It was a great evening. Lots of fun, a bit of business and a lovely meal on Byres Rd at a tiny restaurant called No. 16.

It’s really very nice to be locals in a city like Glasgow, where strangers are always very impressed whether they are here for a short business trip, or a longer more relaxed vacation. We love Glasgow.

filles at 2:02 pm

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Shattered Glass

Another educational film today. Shattered Glass. How despicable, I’ll never be able to believe what I read anymore….

filles at 1:53 pm

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May 17, 2004

Pub Culture

This is an extract from a NY Times editorialists’ article titled ‘Giving in to the Pub Life’……

“For real mixing, you have to hit the pubs. Of which there are many, and various kinds: ancient, unspoiled pubs where the grease marks date back to the Union of the Crowns in 1603, horseshoe pubs, hip 20-something pickup pubs, outdoor pubs, neighborhood pubs, even old-age pubs. Thus, when my husband’s colleague Iain invited me to join the two of them at the Chip, I could hardly refuse.

So (my trip to the pub) turned into two hours? O.K. — two and a half. In any event, I mainly stick to red wine, which as everyone knows is good for you, if taken in moderation. Moderation, however, is not a pub virtue. Nor is red wine. This is Scotland, and the drink of choice is beer — or, of course, whisky. Here’s how it works: first your new best friend, Iain — how on earth had you managed to get along without him? — buys a round, then you buy a round, and then, though you think it might be time to go, it isn’t, because by this time your new best friend’s mate Richard has shown up, meaning it’s Richard’s turn, and though you are refusing a third glass of — what is it you’re drinking? — you don’t seem to have much choice because here Richard is actually pouring his lager into your glass, and saying, ”Beer is good,” and as he fills your glass you’re joined by yet another pal, a somewhat hulking fellow in a beat-up biker jacket, and now all of you are toasting to ale, art and your favorite aging rocker, Mick Jagger. Sir Mick! He’s a bloody knight, you know.”

All of which I find, is a true and accurate account of daily life in Glasgow.

filles at 2:24 pm

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May 15, 2004

a Brad kind of day..

Today was another sunny day in Glasgow. We left around 11am for brunch at the Liquid Ship on Great Western Rd. I wanted to find you a link with pictures, cause it really is a lovely place. All light and airy, big sliding windows and the best most comfortable leather couches I’ve ever seen in a bar/cafe… but alas, I couldn’t find any on the web. Here is a bit of info… but, for the rest, you’ll just have to check it out yourself.

It was a lovely morning, and to top it off, we ran into a friend of ours, Jane, who was meeting her bridesmaid there for a bit of brunch, before she headed over to the south side, to get married! She was so calm!!!! It was perfect.

Next stop was the CCA bar, which was a bit of a mess with a million people crawling about getting ready for the Smirnoff Event which is a big day of DJ’s, record fairs, multimedia events and the like. We had a beer in the sun, and left them to it, before heading off to see TROY.

Now if you know Michelle, you’ll know what a Brad Pitt fan she is….

So we saw it. It was actually funny in parts. Those long shots, on profile of Brad. Just for the teenagers! Anyway, its done and over with now.

Next stop a pre-theatre dinner, then a disastrous evening of ballet at the Kings Theatre. Ballet Central. I guess for an amateur night they really were quite good, but after the Dance Theatre of Harlem earlier in the week, it was hardly comparable.

So home again now. Michelle has settled down on the couch to watch yet another Brad Pitt film on the telly, Fight Club.

There’s only so much ‘Brad’ one should have to put up with in one day…. thankfully Ed Norton is there to counterbalance this one.

filles at 10:32 pm

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I must confess. My Friday afternoon outing was quite enjoyable. I was picked up and driven to Helensburgh. Deposited outside the Hill House, I spent the next couple of hours wandering about the house designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh in 1902 for Walter Blackie, then a big publishing gentleman from Glasgow.

Now my experience so far with C.R. Mackintosh has not been particularly successful. We certainly do not have the same taste for design, that’s for sure. But I must say, 2 hours at the Hill House, and I was rapidly forming some sort of respect for the gentleman. I mean 1902… this guys designs look modern japanese style… at least the 1970’s.

After tea and shortbread in the “tea rooms” I wandered down into Helensburgh itself and visited the pier, tourist information and wandered about the little tea shops, florists and even butchers! The houses are just beautiful in the area, and being on the seafront makes all the difference. In fact there is a pedestrian ferry that departs periodically from Helensburgh to my favorite destination of Gourock (where there is the heated outdoor pool we frequent).

Next time I’ll bring my swimmers.

Michelle played her game of golf as a guest of her work colleague, Andy, and she met me back at his house around 6pm. We spent a lovely afternoon having a drink in the conservatory with Andy and his wife Audrey, followed by a magnificent meal at the Upper Crust in Helensburgh.

It was a lovely afternoon and evening, and certainly we couldn’t have had better company to celebrate our 1 year anniversary in Glasgow. It was a real pleasure, and one that we will hopefully share again.

filles at 10:10 pm

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May 14, 2004


I have a headache. It doesn’t matter how much I try, I cannot keep up with the locals!

In my attempt to not argue, and keep the noise down this morning, i find myself cajooled into a golf outing this afternoon… i’ve packed a book and a blow up pillow. That should do it.

We’re off to Loch Lomond…..

Have a nice weekend!

filles at 11:22 am

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May 13, 2004


Tonight we’ve scheduled a Girls Dinner. We’re off to try the Observatory Restaurant – with 5 women.

It’s just been taken over by the same people who run Firebird… and it’s just a hop, skip and a jump from our house. Down the stairs, along the path, and there just on the other side of the park. I have no idea how good the food is, but the bar is supposed to be excellent. And to top it all off, the website mentions something about free cocktails on Thursday evenings?

So. I’ll let you know how we get along.

filles at 4:11 pm

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