Monday, 5 December 2016

A travel blog.

I hate to sound at all like a commercial traveller but we had a night away to celebrate a year post chemo and the gorgeous front covers of Les's first two novels which arrived the same day. Les had no idea that I had booked a wee room on the most northerly point in Spain but as we travelled into the unknown he got super-excited. We had unexpectedly gorgeous weather, great views and fantastic food all at a very reasonable rate from most hospitable hosts. I refuse to advertise but email me if you want details!


It's been a long time, Mary Berry!

It has been ages since I sat down to blog. Life has taken over. The team on the great Bristish Bake-off do one show per week, I have to do four. Here are two of the groups (all consenting adults!) The results are as varied as the personalities, the only thing that never changes is that my scones/buns/shortbread is the worst in show!

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

The obstacles set before us..

Saturday I was preparing a sermon for Sunday, including the verse  "let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us" so I was ticked to look out of the kitchen window to see a race starting from the square (top photo). Later I took my notes down to the boat, wondering why the streets were so muddy. Turned the corner to find out there was skip full of mud and runners having to leap in and out of it as part of the race. Confirmed my next verse "I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them."  So I kept away from the mud gladly! Big shout to those who finished the Heroican race in that heat, a shower well deserved!

Thursday, 25 August 2016

A not so quiet night..

So. it has been ages since we told you anything and for most of the time we too have been in the dark as to what was happening, but eventually it all came good and we made it to our 35th Anniversary so we celebrated, first with fancy dress and later with the kids in Edinburgh. The fancy dress paid tribute to the number of nights we had spent in casualty over the past year and because kind friends gave to charity we raised five hundred pounds for Macmillan Cancer Support in Orkney. A worthy cause!

Monday, 6 June 2016

The bells, the bells....

Since we moved flats we find our lives punctuated by "The Bells". In our previous dwelling we only heard them if we left the windows open. Here we hear them even with the windows, shutters and curtains closed - Aaargh! Thankfully they are stopped on the 12th stroke of midnight but even that sounds like the 24 hour clock for as soon as the church strikes 12 the convent bells start, their clock being almost a minute slower. Then if someone in town dies they start a mournful double ring for the deceased. We think the older the person the longer they donger. Then there are various calls to Mass. Anyway it is the beating heart of the town and we love being in it's centre. The bells in the video are in nearby A Ponte and they have rather more agile bell ringers.

Friday, 13 May 2016

Poetry please.

 As Donald famously told the curator at Maeshowe it is "Very bad to write on walls!"
I had to write on a wall today after Spanish class. The teacher told me to, honest. We were translating a verse from the Gallego poet Manuel Maria about language and I was supposed to translate it into Scots, and make it rhyme, standing on a chair was the worst bit and having photos taken of my deup!

In Gallego it says:
O idioma é a patria
a esencia máis nosa
a creación comun
meirande é poderoso

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Kiwi Company

We have been very happy to have a tame Kiwi in the house, Romy joined us from WECNew Zealand to help out for a month and she has been great company. Not only did she help in English chat groups but she washed dishes, sanded woodwork and peeled over 3 stones of potatoes! We will be sorry to see her leave and look forward to her return!

Good news with old friends

So last week I was back in the UK for the tests planned for the end of my first year post surgery. I was in Aberdeen two nights for mammograms, check ups and various consultations all of which went well. Had an evening off to celebrate with old friends who traveled down from Orkney to see me and with my bridesmaid Wee Ali as well. So good to catch up over good news after the poor souls had to listen to me moaning for the previous 10 months! And to celebrate we went to the Scottish Ballet, it was not Swan Lake as I have ever seen it before but it was enchanting and the ice cream was fantastic! Thanks lasses!

Thursday, 31 March 2016

If life gives you lemons..

Big mistake in our most recent flit was to dump all empty glass jars. OK the satisfying crashes as I hurled them into recycling was worth it but later that evening our dear friend Pako turned up at 10.30pm to deliver a crate of oranges. And enough lemons to make 20 jars of marmalade. Didn´t see that one coming obviously! PS It tasted fine, being in plastic tubs never hurt it en route to conference.

A life without luggage.

What are your dreams, ambitions, plans?  I can no longer dream of retiring having already been awarded my pension but at the moment I dream of a life without luggage.That might sound odd for a person who has over 12 suitcases, scattered round the world but, as to using them, I have had enough.

For today all dreams on foreign destinations are gone. I just want to know where my socks are and keep them there. I want to wake up and recognise my bedside table, know where the loo is etc..

My travel journal of 1000 places to visit before you die has 75 entries covered. This is enough. (Remind me please when I tell you I quite fancy Botswana.) While I am moaning here, can I also point out that this is my last housemove in Spain. I have to record this here in case I am ever tempted, evicted or bombed out to set up elsewhere. This really is enough. "Taxi for Cowan!"

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Dirty detox..

So here we are with some alternative treatments. To be honest there was nothing good or enlightning to say about the Chemo months, hence no photos or posts. The month of January was spent in Aberdeen however having radiotherpay every morning and the rest of the day to experiment with other therapies. Most of them were a bit new-age for my tastes but I did try Aqua Detox. The theory is that salt water conducts a positive and then negative charge from the electric device through your feet. Red blood cells have a negative polarity and after the treatment are less likely to cling together and better blood flow results in improvements, removing the toxins from the chemo. (You can tell I didn't do physics!)
  However the toxins do rather turn the water murky. Better out than in

Radio killed the radio stars.. and rogue cells apparently

Beam me up Scotty! This was my feeling every morning as I lay beneath the radiotherapy machine, while it whirred and buzzed around me. Very clever kit. Installed, I think, by WEC colleague Viv Whitton before he retired. 20 minutes under this every morning and that is you cooked. They treat 100 patients every day in three machines at ARI. Very grateful, even when it hurts.

Boy Sprouts

Christmas day with the boys was like old times, playing with toys, Andrew getting distracted in some deep thought and forgetting to take his turn opening his stocking. Donald getting up to daring do and flying his drone into a loch and later the sea, muddy jeans, then what is this? Exploding sprouts?