Monday, April 07, 2008


Glasgow is hot stuff, apparently; there’s snow all over Britain and, again, we escape – so I don’t suppose I can really complain about the weather since I’ve been back. They were deep in it in Aberdeen last month and all we had was a five-minute flurry, enough for me to say to my grandchildren on Easter Monday, ‘Oh look, it’s snowing!’ My son bought sleds for his kids the other year and so far they’ve only managed to use them once, and that was just frost.

I’m sure there used to be more snow, when I was a child. Every winter we made slides on the pavements; great black slashes that we polished, standing like tight-rope walkers, flying down the street, faster and faster...terrifying the life out of the elderly – who put salt on our fun. Of course beating the snow into a death-trap wouldn’t be allowed nowadays; and I’d be amazed if the kids even knew what a slide was. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not advocating the right of snow to lie around my life and make me scared to go out in case I fall and break a hip: I’m just noting the difference.

The worst thing about this country is the weather; sometimes summer consists of a handful of warm weeks in May, which will have disappeared from our memory by July. I remember one year, maybe 1978, waiting for a summer that absolutely never arrived! I’m sure I would’ve seen it, because I was looking. My son was two and I had washing on the line every morning; that’s why I know the sun didn’t shine – I lived in a very bad area and had to sit out and guard the I had a pretty relaxing year but no tan.

I’ve spent the last five years between Devon and Spain and almost nine months have passed since I came back here – it’s been a long winter. I have recently become aware that I know England better than my homeland of Scotland, so plan to change that this year by exploring the wilds of the islands and highlands with my camera. I am ashamed to say that I haven’t been further north than Fort William or Inverness and Ullapool...and the only island I’ve set foot on is Millport (which is the town, I can’t even remember the name of the island).

Meanwhile, I have half a metre of pale grey fleece around my shoulders to save on heating; summer is bound to be here soon and the thought of catching great images of the Western Isles in the coming months fills me with enthusiasm, if not heat.


OSLO said...

Glasgow sounds just like Oslo at the moment - where is Spring?! My first winter in Aberdeen, I said 'never again' and only stayed four more. I remember one summer, probably 1995, which was so cold that I didn't go without socks for even one day. And why is it then than I often think that we might some day settle there? Well, it sure won't be for the weather!

ireneintheworld said...

i know. i can't imagine why anyone would want to live in alaska and iceland, or norway! while they might be beautiful and photogenic, the very idea of being stuck in all that SNOW! oh not me; glasgow is bad enough but mostly just overcast and grey. x