Sunday, 21 August 2011

How to capture an intangible?

Developing, trying to connect dotted lines,
in which to create interest, meaning or beauty.

Navigating, random thoughts which look for structure and form,
to assemble, like a collage,
only to burst into a kaleidoscope of ideas,
to be brushed, into something.

Symmetrical, still and contemplative beauty, a zen garden,
perfection, hanging on a thread,
of a fleeting moment, in an image, still and waiting, waiting to be captured.

    Friday, 19 August 2011

    How to get a clean new brain, ready to receive orders!

    Go and see Philip Glass and his orchestra perform the music to his film Naqoyqatsi.
    That is what Dexter, Anders and I did on Monday evening, in addition to going out for a Chinese dinner beforehand to celebrate Dexter coming back from Cub Camp. All three of us were blown away by Naqoyqatsi (Philip Glass is the man third from the right in the photo). It felt like being in that scene in a film where the hero is brainwashed using millions of high speed images and we left feeling like we had 3 marvellously clean brains, awaiting new orders.....

    Na-qoy-qatsi: (nah koy' kahtsee) N. From the Hopi Language. 1. A life of killing each other 2. War as a way of life. 3. (Interpreted) Civilized violence.

    Thursday, 18 August 2011

    School started yesterday....

    Dexter went back to school yesterday for the start of a new year.  I for one cannot believe how quickly this year has been passing.

    Wednesday, 17 August 2011

    Dexter cooked dinner last night.....

    Well talk about a treat, Dexter cooked dinner last night and it was so yummy. It was what he learnt to cook at Cub Camp! Anders and I are so very very proud of him.  
    He chopped all the ingredients needed to make carrot and coriander soup.......
    ..... whilst Anders set the table......
    ..... and then after we scoffed the delicious soup which was garnished with cream, olive oil and coriander leaves.....
    ......we ate the mandarin tart that Dexter also made!  This was served with fresh cream with some vanilla....
    .....and followed with a refreshing cup of tea.....
    .... all of this which in some ways felt quite surreal knowing my little Dexter had made all of this, so what better way to top it off but to have a dance to Barbarella which happened to come on the CD player just as we finished dinner. All of us, including the dogs.... what a lovely night, even thought I was on the clearing patrol :-)

    Tuesday, 16 August 2011

    Dexter is back.

    Dexter got back yesterday from his weekend away with the Cubs camping and it sounds like he had a great time.  He learnt to cook, clean and sew (guess who the new home help might well be now!!!), in addition to going hiking, singing songs round the camp fire, playing all sorts of sports activities and just hanging out with his pals for 3 nights straight!

    As it turns out, Anders and I have had a fantastic weekend too. We have seen great shows at the Festival, gone for some great walks in places we had never gone to before and just done a whole lot of stuff together as a couple.  Whilst yes, some of the things we could have done with Dexter too, it was really nice just doing them as a duet again!

    So, whilst Dexter did miss us, and we definitely missed having him around, we all got to share in telling stories about what we all got up to which was fun in itself.  Dexter has sung me the camp fire songs he was taught, and is going to make us dinner tonight! I know, he is going to make us carrot and coriander soup and then a mandarin tart.  He also learnt how to make stuffed baked potatoes and blueberry and raspberry muffins (which we will have another night).

    As an aside, this photograph is of a little desk reminder which I found in a church sale for only 30p, yep that is right only cost 30p!!!

    I think that it is important to use each and every minute to the full and that is what this little object said to me when I saw it. In changing the numbers, days and months which repeat at varying speeds, it will remind me that I also have a constant, a fixed one in that there are set names of days, numbers of days in the week and names for the set months in the year but everything else is up for grabs!!! With that I am going to have a cup of coffee which has just been freshly ground and made for me by my lovely Anders :-)

    Sunday, 14 August 2011

    Dexter has gone camping so what have Anders and I been doing?

    Well Dexter has gone camping, more of which I will mention about in a moment! So what have Anders and I been doing?  A whole lot, but for starters, on Friday went out to see one of the many shows of this weekend which are on in the Festival. For this first show, I thought I did us a massive favour by getting us these awesome front row seats! Unfortunately for Anders this transvestite show required some audience participation (you know where this is going)!! Anders got pulled from the audience, and received his own lap dance from a 20 stone, opera singing man wearing a zebra lycra bodysuit. It was fantastic and I just loved every minute of it.  Yep, this very artist in these photographs, and he was just lovely, with a great voice, and just genuinely charming.
    Whilst Anders was a great sport about it, he did say "at one point I felt as though I had had an out of body experience and thought, is this a dream" to which when his nose was crushed by the performers giant belly Anders then thought "no this is no dream"! I didn't take any photographs of the actual dance however, that is because at the beginning of the show we were told we were not allowed to. It wasn't until the last song that we were told, that we could take out our cameras, so Anders special dance cannot be shared, but will forever be remembered :-)
    Now about Dexter, I know he is having a great time away, he was so excited about this camping trip, but I also knew there would be a moment before they left that he would start to think "I am going away from my Mum and Dad, oh no". Anders didn't think this would happen, and helpfully explained to him that he was but a few miles from Scotland's hospital for the criminally insane, and ended up telling him a story to tell round the campfire which he ended up with saying to Dexter "oh, and by the way, that story is completely true and the man is locked up in that very hospital right now". I of course was unaware of this Father to Son tale, but then in seeing the photographs I took of Dexter departing, I wonder now if that is what he was thinking about!
    He returns tomorrow and will get huge cuddles and kisses from both me and Anders.

    Friday, 12 August 2011

    It's a new day, it's a new dawn......

    I cannot believe how quickly this time has come around, Dexter going away to Cub Camp. He is going with all his friends and together they are going to do outdoor things like hiking and swimming in a lake. They are going to be learning how to cook, clean and well camp in the outdoors and although they are under close supervision of adults, they are learning to do things for themselves as part of a pack! He is so excited about it, as are all his friends, this is after all, a big adventure.

    Thinking back to when I went camping for the first time, I remember it was really exciting for me too. It is only now however that I understand how my Mum felt letting me go to these things. Whilst as a child I desperately wanted to go away on camping trips with my friends, my Mum worried and eventually reluctantly let me go. I know she felt she was losing her baby a little bit more in letting me do these things.  Whilst I feel this slightly, I have honestly enjoyed every single stage of Dexter's development, and I just think that he is going to return even better (can that be possible?)! Whilst I look back on stages of his growth and feel a twinge of sadness that he is no longer that, I love the person he has become, he has grown into, and there is not one stage that I love or have loved more than the next. Each stage of his development has melted easily into the next until before I realise he is nearly 10! Logically, him going to camp therefore should be no different, it is only a 3 night camping trip after all. It is just that though, right now him going away for 3 nights without us really does feel like a new day dawning for him as well as Anders and I.

    So Anders and I are both going to hugely miss our little lovely who is excited and ready to go with his new rucksack and list of things he was told to bring with him. We know he needs to find his own space, carve his own identity without us directly being there, and that my little lovely is excited at the thought of what he is going to learn and experience. I am smiling just thinking about that as I remember feeling exactly the same way when I went away on my first guide camping trip!  His best friend is even having his birthday on this trip, and is bringing a birthday cake to celebrate so it seems like it is going to be a fun packed weekend.  

    For Anders and I, it is going to be our own little adventure, doing grown up things and going to places where Dexter would not be allowed that we would therefore normally pass on because of this! We are going to stay out late!!! I think we are going to see some Fringe and Edinburgh Festival shows, not sure what yet and perhaps will even go for cocktails and maybe even so some street photography at night! We will miss our little lovely though.....

    Thursday, 11 August 2011

    Singing in the rain....

    It is pouring with rain outside, and many parts of Scotland are experiencing floods, but what can you do about it except put out sandbags (there are some houses very close to us which might well see that happening), and put on you Wellies pull out your umbrella and start humming happy tunes and know that the stormy clouds will pass!

    Wednesday, 10 August 2011

    Robert Rauschenberg Exhibition

    Just went round Inverleith House at the Royal Botanical Gardens for my lunch in Edinburgh to see the Robert Rauschenberg Exhibition. Fantastic exhibition which just took my mind away to so many positive places. I just loved this and I know that it has had an impact as I cannot stop thinking about it! Will definitely go back to see it, perhaps at the weekend with Dexter as I know he will love it too.

    Looting England

    Looting England, one hundred people here, twenty people there, one big gang bang but they don't care, she's not their Mum! They don't care, they don't remember her name, just now, in their frenzy.  Tomorrow, maybe, or the next, when they chant her name, E.N.G.E.L.A.N.D, will they remember and hold their head in shame?  

    Looting England, it is their own backyard they disregard. They are too high and stupid to not realise, it is their own they disrespect. Whose going to beat her today?  She won't tell, she always stands proud, she's taken the beating for days now. She survived two wars, she's survived terrorism, she'll be ok!

    Looting England, don't care about the reasons you rape and pillage her, they don't matter but she will always give you a fair hearing! 

    Tuesday, 9 August 2011

    Keep calm......

    The governing and business worlds seems to be going into financial and political mindless meltdown which is so stupid and effects the man in the street worst of all. Panic just leads to more panic all, pointless as you cannot do anything positive when you are panic-stricken. You need to stay calm, apply logic with known facts and not just react mindlessly. To me, I am deeply suspicious about what is going on.  Logically these events just seems more of a political manipulation. With the US having their political elections in 2012, to me this just smacks of the Republicans trying to get the Democrats out, and as someone not from the US, I really hope that doesn't happen as from what we see the last Republican administration under Bush was awful. I mean the downgrading of the US credit status by S&P, why the credit agencies were not shut down because they were complicit in the financial crash a few years ago shocks me. 
    Thankfully however, there is other stuff going on too, like the finishing touches are taking place in Edinburgh for the enclosures that will be home for the Chinese Panda's who will arrive here in October......
     My neighbour gave birth to their first child, a little boy who they have called Sebastian....
     .... and yes, there is rioting and looting going on in England just now which is awful and definitely scary.....
    .... eventually the charges will stop, calm will be restored .....
     .....and put down to historical data.

    Monday, 8 August 2011

    We took Dexter to see this last night, it isn't just Super 8 it is Fantastic! There is not one thing that wasn't great about this film and I know is going to be one of those films that Dexter grows up remembering the same way me and Anders do ET. Anders and I are still going on about it this morning, it is that great, actually I want to go and see it again!

    Friday, 5 August 2011

    Falling..... love again........

    Thursday, 4 August 2011

    Betsy with Hammy Houdini

      I love this photo, it just makes me laugh!!!

    Outside Edinburgh.....

    I know I am spoilt living in such a beautiful city like Edinburgh as literally I can be at the beach, or lost in a countryside landscape or up a huge extinct volcano in just next to no time from where I live. That said, if you decide to take even just a 1 hour drive outside Edinburgh, you find even more of some of the most spectacularly beautiful landscapes, which never ceases to amaze me.
    It is great to be able to wake up in the morning to beautiful sunshine and jump into the car and go for a drive to somewhere different.
    Andrew, Dexter, Marvin, Carly and I decided to do just that and all jumped into the car to explore parts of Scotland we had not been to for a while.
    With each turn in the road we were all saying "look at that" and "oh, my God, look at that view"!
    We stopped off at a lovely little place on the side of a loch to have lunch of fresh mussels and cider and as the sun beat down we all felt like we were on holiday!
    It was then we thought, maybe at some point we will go for a whole weekend in our '66 Splitty. Now I know to many that seems obvious but that to us is not a spur of the moment thing as it really requires organising and is totally dependent on weather as the bus is "rust free" with no welding ever having been required done on it. I am ashamed to say we hardly ever use it as we are not nearly so organised as to plan ahead......
     .......but looking at these photographs which I took on the i-phone......
     .....maybe we should be as it really would make for even more interesting photographs and adventures!
     Let's see if the weather continues to be dry and sunny first though!

    Wednesday, 3 August 2011

    Hammy Houdini....

    Hammy Houdini has returned home, but not without putting me through the most terrifying of escapes, he had managed to vanish completely!
    He performed his escape on Saturday night. In the morning when we awoke to find him gone, panic became the mood in our house. The whole of Sunday was spent looking under the kitchen units, everywhere, which was hard as he had over 2000 square feet to roam freely about during the night.  Luckily the Dexter the cat had been out all night, and for obvious reasons did not get back into the house until we found him late on Sunday night! Marvin and Carly too had to spend the whole day with Anders and Dexter outside whilst I hunted all over the place, leaving peanuts in their shells with thread attached to them so as to find where he was hiding and sitting in wait to see if I could see or hear a scuttle. Before Dexter went to sleep, he said "Mummy, please find him or else I will have to admit this at school when we have to write about what exciting things happened during the summer holidays, and this will be embarrassing". Dexter and Betsy go to the same school but are in different years.  Talk about pressure!!!
    The worst of it was, Betsy, the little girl who he belongs to came over at about 7pm to take him back home.  I had to admit, he had escaped and promise that I would not sleep until he was found (hamsters are nocturnal). Betsy kept a stiff upper lip, but I knew that this 7 year old child was going to burst into tears at any minute and that if I didn't find him, I would forever be looked at with big eyes that would have tears start to well up as she remembered that I was the woman who lost her hamster! I thought they were not returning until the 1st of August, and that I might not need to admit this awful thing, but alas no, they arrived just in time to hear of his last and final escape!
    I had sat in the house all day Sunday, quiet as a mouse, listening for signs of him scuttling.  It wasn't however until about 9pm that I caught him.  He had walked downstairs and was hiding under the fire engine! As soon as he saw he had been spotted he ran right back under so I had to get Anders to move the fire engine to catch him.  As I caught him, he squeaked and leapt out of my hands into Dexter's Wellington boot, which I grabbed and ran upstairs with him sitting inside with all four of his paws at either side trying to climb it like he does his hamster hutch pipes! I got him to his cage and rushed him express delivery over to Betsy's house so she would see him safe and sound in the morning.  Jackie, Betsy's mum, said Betsy had gone to bed dreaming of safe and good thoughts for him to return the next day. Clearly her thoughts had worked, phew!

    Hammy Houdini (or Trevor as is his Sunday name), is now back at his home safe and I too feel a huge relief, not sure which of us got the bigger fright! That said, today I got a huge smile and thank you from Betsy, together with a bunch of sunflowers to say thank you for looking after him!