Sunday, July 09, 2006

Border country

Phyllis and I went for a trip out into the Scottish Borders today. The weather looked as though it might be a bit grim, but it's always nice to get out of the same old four walls. Nothing was keeping me indoors today, and nothing was keeping Phyllis in. Not even the tennis. I've no interest in any sport whatsoever (unless men in lycra are involved), dear reader.

I got up very late, did a bit of farting around, had a shower, got dressed et al while Phyllis watched The Golden Girls on telly. Then my lovely pal Robin called, we had a
chat, a gossip and a laugh. Champing at the bit, I, for once, was out the door, waiting for the off while my beau was still putting his shoes on.

Mes filles waited patiently at the door for him.

I was going to take them across to the wood for a quick tiddle in waiting for La Phillips, but they were adamantly going to wait at the car. They love going in the car, Meg especially. I think this stems from her fear of us going away without her when she was a puppy. She always makes for the car and if the boot is open, she'll jump in, whether we're going off in the car or not.

We were soon on our way, stopping briefly en route at Tesco in Dalkeith for some pieces, drinks and a couple of packets of delicious crisps.

Self-service check-outs are a shoplifter's nightmare.

Our brief retail-experience over, we were soon on the road again, the A7, actually.

We sometimes like to be quite political and our conversation soon turned to the up-coming Scottish Parliamentary election, Margaret Thatcher's legacy, the promotion of selfishness in the UK, television and political apathy. Then we talked about cocks, disco records and drag.

And as we sit here, alone, looking for a reason to go on, it's so clear that all we have
now are our thoughts of yesterday.

Huger pangs!

We stopped in Stow and sat on a wall to stuff our faces, have a drink and sing songs from commercials to one another. I sang the song from the 70s/80s Flake advert:

Only the crumbliest,
Flakiest chocolate

Tastes like chocolate never
Tasted before

Ian sang the Shake 'n' Vac song:

Do the shake 'n' vac
And put the freshness back

Do the shake 'n' vac
And put the freshness back

When your carpet smells fresh

Your room does too
Every time you vacuum
Remember what to do

Do the shake 'n' vac
And put the freshness back
Do the shake 'n' vac
And put the freshness back

A 4 x 4 had subsequently pulled up alongside us and unbeknownst to me, their sun roof was open. Ian informed me that we'd given them a wee show. How fabulous for the dreary visions in beige and their vile children. I expect we made their day. No, their week. No, their year. Hang on, I expect we were the highlight of their lives. When those ghastly little children are old and frail, they'll be sat around in a nursing home, telling their fellow residents how they had the time of their lives when they were young and saw two fabulous homosexuals, by the road side, singing songs from old 1970s television commercials. Their weak hearts will race and they will die, but, dear reader, with smiles on their faces. How wonderful to know your life actually amounted to something. Because of my outrageous existance, someone will die with a smile on their face. Phyllis and I are bound to get into heaven now. St Peter will welcome us with open arms and St Judy will throw a party in our honour. Of that, I am quite sure.

There behind us was a wee bridge, begging to be photographed and built in the late seventeenth Century. Too fragile now to use, it's fenced off and been awarded with a notice board informing the inquisitive traveller of its history. Looking down at Gala Water, which flows underneath it, one can see how the river's course has changed over the years. There are various banks looking like terraces and the point at the centre of the two larger arcs, built to bare the brunt of the force of the water, is now on the bank.

I tried to use the rule of thirds, but upon closer examination, I've failed miserably. Sorry! But I am trying, honest!

Oh, while we're on the topic of photography, please check out the photography competition on Alan's blog. We need to decide a winner! Care to lend a hand, hen?

Sometimes I've been to crying for unborn children that might have made me complete. But I took the sweet life and never knew I'd be bitter from the sweet. I've
spent my life exploring the subtle whoring that costs too much to be free.

Hey, lady. I've been to paradise, but I've never been to me.

Next stop, Galashiels. We thought we'd pop in to See Phyllis' brother, David. He wasn't at home.

David's a lovely man, I really like him. He's a great Father and a son any parent would be proud of. Sadly, his wife didn't think much of him. They were divorced when their children were quite young and none of them know it was because their mother was having group sex with the local constabulary. But that's a whole other kettle of fish.

If you don't love me, I will know.

Next stop, Melrose!

The main purpose of this stop, for me anyway, was Plaisir Du Chocolat, which, sadly, after peering in through the shop window, was bloody well closed! Aaarrrggghhh!

They sell the most delicious chocolates you've ever tasted, my darlings. Sadly, none
are in my belly, but are still in the shop.

Eyes downcast, and with a heavy heart, I got back into the car. We drove a short distance and parked the car near the river Tweed.

Our intention was to walk along the bank for a couple of hundred yards and then cross the bridge to the other side, walk along for a couple of miles and then double-back, or, if we weren't too tired, walk a bit further, cross the river again on another bridge and walk back to the car.

My first obstacle (not an obstacle for Phyllis) was the bridge. It moves. It sways. It could fall down. I felt quite nervous.

But cross it, we did, Phyllis taking great delight in jumpin' up and down, making the bridge sway, ever so slightly freaking me out.

On reaching the other side, Meg investigated some miserable cyclists.

Mary found her favourite thing: a stick. It's a case of the bigger the better for Mary. I think she's a size-queen.

Our hikette didn't last long, oh no, dear reader. About fifteen minutes into the walk, we were both bombarded with pollen or some other vile allergen. First, the eyes started itching, then the sneezing, then the runny nose.

Back to the car.

We made for Kelso, stopping along the way to take in the Eildon Hills at Scott's View.

Ian used to go to school in Kelso, back in the day. We stopped by to have a look at the old place. He was taken aback at how it's changed; an old building having been pulled down and a new extension added onto the school hall. The main building was still untouched, something from the 1920s or 30s, I think. I'm no architectural historian though, so please don't quote Minge on this!

Phyllis' Father is currently away in Portsmouth visiting his sister, so, after having a coffee and a wee bite to eat, we bypassed Ian's home village of St Boswells and headed for the A68 and to Edinburgh and home, stopping along the way to have a look at the fabulous wind turbines at Sutra.

Why are some people so against wind farms? Would they rather look out onto a nuclear or coal fired power station?

I think wind turbines look wonderful, majestic, and from a distance, like a troup of dancing fairies.

How gay.

How fabulous.


Enda said...

What a lovely day! How on earth do you manage to do all this stuff and still find time to blog it all and make it sound so interesting?


You can tell me anything; I'll believe you.

Lex Ham Rand said...

This is a great post - funny and fun to read. I think your photographs are excellent. And such beautiful dogs!

Minge said...

You know it's true. Shame the truth with lies, say the sun won't rise...

I don't know how I find the time for all this. I guess I don't have much else to do to fill my time. I'm just a sad little homo.

There would have been more photographs, and better ones, too, but my batteries were about to die! I just had to quickly point and shoot. I didn't want to waste battery life zooming in and out and lining up a shot. Next time, I'll remember the spares!

Moncrief Speaks said...

Wonderful photo essay. The Scottish countryside looks so beautiful.

Dan said...

Very nice - sounds like you all had an excellent day. Wish we had more country like that down here. I'll survive with my little forest :)

And totally agree on the wind farms - soooo much better than chimneys puking black smoke into the sky. There is a huge farm just off the coast of Norfolk we saw on our hols last year - very impressive, all these wind turbines out to sea..

Anonymous said...

Ah - looks like you had a most excellent time! LOL at giving the 'vile children' something to look at. I remember the Shake N Vac ads!

The wind farms look benign and peaceful, and, yes, like dancing fairies. Just lovely.

Hmm, I'm now interested to hear about this 'group sex with the local constabulary' business...

Blog Off said...

fab hen