It’s Saturday morning and I feel like writing. Not sure about what yet, I’ve got a few thoughts swirling around. Today I’ve got a couple of bits to do in town then I’m off to Edinburgh to see the Hibees play. Thankfully I’ve got a few hours before I have to leave.
I just spent a few minutes picking my travelling book for today’s escapades. I travel light for the football, generally clutching just a book. My to-read pile never really changes. It just grows exponentially though I am currently in the midst of a clear-out of those many books that I bought with good intentions and either managed to read or never quite ended up opening. To make matters worse, I was on a bit of a mission last week, trying to track down a very particular book secondhand, touring many shops in Paisley, Glasgow and Edinburgh without success, ending up ordering it on Amazon with a tap of my iPhone. It wasn’t for me, I hasten to add. As part of the process, I ended up with a few books for me. I’ve got a new book of essays by Rebecca Solnit that I picked up in Stockbridge that currently sits in my backpack. A John Muir book, a couple by Dervla Murphy and a biography of Lyndon Johnson were bought in Paisley, a story of St. Kilda in the West End. At some point I sincerely hope they all get read. The LBJ one has been skimmed already, thankfully. Anyway, today’s book is The Hidden Ways by Alistair Moffat, a look at some of the lesser-spotted paths scattered across Scotland, including the Herring Road that runs between Dunbar and Lauder.
This week I have also been re-reading Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by JK Rowling. I re-read Harry Potter every so often, though not for a year or two in this case, and this is on a screen this time, a few pages chanced during breaks and breakfast. Harry is just about to fly for the first time. I had to give up a book recently as it was too heavy in content, not something I do very often, and a combination of Harry Potter and a re-read of a Bill Bryson seems to be getting me back on track.
On a Saturday morning I make a point of reading the Lifestyle articles from the Guardian and Aidan Smith’s interview in the Scotsman. I usually read the Blind date bit and then whatever features are there. It’s my guilty pleasure or one of them, an idle fascination in whether these two people will have anything in common. Some do, others are better as friends, as today’s couple. Aidan Smith writes about football and usually a retired sportsperson of some renown gets interviewed on a Saturday in the Scotsman. Today’s is Andy Webster, formerly of Hearts, and he talks about the Romanov era at Tynecastle as well as about his current work coaching at St. Mirren. He puts to bed the ‘thick footballer’ trope, in the final stages of a masters degree as well as possessing six Highers, even studying psychology through the Open University at the height of the Romanov revolution down Gorgie way.
I haven’t sat down and written like this in a while. For a little while I was following one of those blogs that try to teach you to blog properly (I don’t any more) and it suggested picking a blog topic and sticking with it. Bollocks to that. I’ve also been busy so Loose Ends and Streets of Glasgow, conducted in bursts, have been what’s appeared here. The gallimaufry angle, which Natalie over at Wednesday’s Child explored very well last week, is something I will try to get back to. Today might be a start.
Next weekend is the September weekend. While I have a lot of domestic things to do, I will also be out and about too. Hibs are playing in Dundee and I hope to sneak a wee peek at the brand new outpost of the Victoria and Albert Museum, which opens this weekend. The press pictures make it look stunning and I can already testify to how fine it looks from the outside. I follow the journalist Ruth Wishart on Twitter and she noted how poignant it is to see a Charles Rennie Mackintosh-style room in the new V and A given the fire a few months ago at the School of Art here in Glasgow. I will let you know the results.
My soundtrack to this post this morning has been the Scotland Outdoors podcast from BBC Radio Scotland, more specifically the edition from 22nd August featuring a visit to Siccar Point, Hutton’s Unconformity down near Cockburnspath, as well as a walk at Pitlochry which is unfolding now. I am not usually awake to hear the programme live at an agriculturally early hour on a Saturday morning so a podcast is ideal. I very rarely catch a TV or radio programme when it’s broadcast any more, catching up around life.
Anyway, it’s Saturday and I’m ready for breakfast now. For anyone keeping score, I’m thinking Frosties. Thanks for reading, a Loose Ends post follows tomorrow. I think it’s the one about the Ramhorn Cemetery. Cheers for now.