27 June 2017

Big old Darwin and little old me in Darwin College

This part of the college is the house in Cambridge that used to belong to the Darwin family, beginning with one of his sons

The walk to Grantchester

Through Grantchester Meadows, which some may recall as the title of a track by Pink Floyd

And to the Green Man pub, below, where the last time I visited it, 39 years ago, the beautiful actress Susannah York was sitting next to me; although there is not much more to tell of that encounter than what I have just told, and anyway my beautiful, and much younger than Susannah, lady was with me so Susannah was just a sideshow.

Then just as I returned to Cambridge a thunderstorm struck so I had to take refuge from the deluge in another pub... for about two hours... It was only just after lunchtime but I felt I had to sample their offerings to justify taking their shelter. Sigh... They sold me Schiehallion beer, which the young English fellow behind the bar thought I might have pronounced wrongly, until I said, "Listen mate I live within sight of the mountain Schiehallion that the beer is named after, and I have climbed it twice, and the beer is brewed not too far south of my house and..." At which point he asked me to educate him about how to pronounce it properly. Teaching job done.

23 June 2017

To the course the long way

Not to play golf but just to enjoy the longer walk via the East bank for a change and sit in the sunshine on the bench outside the clubhouse accompanied only by 500 ml of "triple-hopped strong malt" India Pale Ale, to celebrate the final day of my part-time academic duties, until September. Students are generally fine but a mutual break from each other is healthy, although on my way back into town I did meet two who are scheduled to encounter my particular brand of teaching for the first time in September. During a brief exchange I informed them to expect to be going "up a level" from what they had just completed, but then told them not to worry. I am not sure they were convinced, and were perhaps concerned by the reek of triple-hopped beer. I may need to work on my pastoral reassurance skills and professional demeanour. We got a fine day.

22 June 2017

Water of Leith Walkway near Roseburn

Hot day sunny haze of leaf and water and light - everything needed for life really, especially with a bottle of cold cider waiting in a pub not far away.

19 June 2017

Another Royal Visit by Her Magnificence

She visits most of the houses of our little road, and acts as if she owns them all

Princes Street people

A pipe band competition, a plethora of nationalities mingling placidly among plants and pleasantness and peace... What could possibly perturb our world? Perhaps the newspaper tucked under my arm?

18 June 2017

Two bright gardens and a dark bottle

From my garden in Perthshire this morning to Princes Street garden in Edinburgh this afternoon, via a bottle of the very fine Dark Dunter, on a hot and sunny Sunday