Saturday, December 19, 2015

This Is 44

Strange that it feels like a milestone when it is not really a noted birthday.  It does feel like one part of my life is closing, that where I make a family, raise children - I have my family, not exactly as I imagined being that it's just my boys and me.  The best laid plans and all that.  This must be how it's meant to be and I have to accept (although it's hard) that there will be no more babies.  It's strange that would affect me so much but it does.

So for my birthday off we went to Edinburgh - the school term finished absurdly early, I was expecting them to still be there until at least Wednesday.  Who makes up these holiday schedules?

After a lovely wander around the Portrait Gallery I was really disappointed that all the 'modern' paintings - of Alan Cummings, Ian Rankin etc. were stuck in the cafe so inaccessible.  Unless you want to wander up to the posh mummies and well-to-do pensioners sipping their lattes and stand over them as you try and appreciate the work.  Hmmn, don't know who thought that out but perhaps they were once responsible for the school timetables.

There was a giant painting of Muriel Grey which, as far as I'm concerned, could remain there but I'd have liked to been able to see the other paintings.  The only one we did manage to get a proper look at was the portrait of Alex Salmond, I think I prefer the one of Nicola Sturgeon though - I think that must be in Bute House?  I know the painting of Salmond is second on that link and Sturgeon's is eighth but the other work is so good it's worth a browse to get there.  For the life of me I cannot do portraits at all, to the point I avoid all humans in my artwork! (Also I came across a TV news piece on Nicola Sturgeon's portrait, it was unveiled along with one of Elaine C. Smith - seventh on the link - and Denise Mina - second last - only Elaine and Nicola were interviewed. Having seen Mina interviewed before I can only imagine she was a nippy sweetie over sharing space with two pro-independence women!)

The Portrait Gallery is a beautiful building and I love the gallery of stars although I couldn't get a decent pic of it as it was low lighting and judging by their official photo it's something that needs to be admired in real life.  At the moment there are some really good displays - not only was the 'Women of Nineteenth Century Scotland' inspiring, it was amazing to see how many women were included in 'Remembering the Great War'. I had forgotten my notebook, frustrating as there were so many names I wanted to take note of for further research.

So out of the gallery and off to the Christmas market which gets progressively more expensive every year, £7.50 for a quick birl on the rides is extortionate for most families, the food is over-priced for what it is which makes for a disappointing time if you've not a lot of spare money.

I dragged the boys all the way down to Holyrood looking for a jewellery shop that ended up being right at the top of the street where we began but it was a lovely walk, spending time with my sons, talking about everything.  None of us minded the trek at all and it meant Youngest could go to his favourite shop - Forbidden Planet. I desperately need some stocking fillers, they were ordered to find some things they'd like but couldn't.  Argh!  I'm running out of time!

Home to a Chinese take-away and hired Jurassic World to watch. I actually managed to pace myself so well that today hasn't been too bad on the pain scale and it seems to be mostly in the feet and ankles which is not as awful as the neck pain when it comes. I've not done much at all, a lazy Saturday letting my battery limp back to red (one day it will get to green) and doodling Zentangles. If this is 44 it's off to a mild yet pleasant start!

Edinburgh from the North Bridge
I know many say Sir Walter Scott would have been a unionist but reading this on the side of the Holyrood building yesterday makes me wonder...A quick translation is that while we can hold those in charge accountable when they are here but when they're down in London it's impossible. That's my main reason for supporting independence!

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