Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Neeb’s wheels 9

It’s been a while since Neeb’s wheels were seen, and this one should have appeared a long time ago, but I sort of ‘forgot’.

And first up is actually a more recent, and lucky catch, showing not only the wheels (which is a not very interesting Land Rover Freelander 2 Metropolis), not only the personalised registration, but also the reason for that registration:

Land Rover Freelander [E8 BUN]

Land Rover Freelander [E8 BUN] at McPhies

See the baker’s web site here, showing they bake more than just the odd BUN: McPhies

Those who have read more of my earlier ramblings may be expecting me start rambling about the shop sign and use of “McPhies” with no apostrophe. Suffice to say that in this case its presence or absence is down to context, intended meaning, and whether that involves use of the collective name, or possession – and I’ll leave it there. I suggest reading up on its use in circumstances like this if you are interested.


I mentioned forgetting to post this sooner, but I really just didn’t get around to it, as the original pic was a bit of a disaster.

I hate some of our cold days here, since outdoors can be both damp (well, this is Scotland), and a little warmer than indoors (so, who can afford heating these days?) Temperature indoors lags temperature outdoors by quite a few hours. The result of this unfortunate combination means stepping out of doors with a camera that is a few degrees lower than outdoors ambient, and that can mean the glass surfaces are below the dew point, and that means… CONDENSATION inside the camera.

There’s not a lot can be done, other than to let it evaporate naturally, but that takes time and the moisture inside the camera can linger.

This first shot shows what I mean – the camera body and lens exterior were ‘clean’, and the fogging was due to internal condensation that formed only after I had been outside for a while on this particular day:

Freelander {E8 BUN] fogged

Freelander {E8 BUN] fogged

While it’s bad news for the camera and lens, which can’t be cleared and have to be left to dry out naturally, provided he fogging is uniform and not so bad as to obscure detail, can be dealt with quite successfully with only a little post-processing, In this case, I didn’t even have to adjust it after applying the automatic correction.

Freelander [E8 BUN] fixed

Freelander [E8 BUN] fixed

Even though the fogging was mild compared to some pics I’ve taken under these conditions, I’m still impressed by the improvement.

It may not be as crisp as the first image above, but that is not really down to the correction, as it was a (cold) dull grey day anyway


March 31, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment

Electrical decay

No prizes for completing the word.

Just a detail I pass frequently – and a bit sad since it probably reflects a failed business as opposed to a relocate on.

Electrician sign derelict


March 30, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Unnoticed Templeton artwork

I may be wrong, but I haven’t come across any notable mentions for this piece of public artwork dedicated to Templeton’s carpet factory.

It’s not really in a prominent place at the side of London Road, and too far from The Barras to be noticed by the folk who roll there in their cars SUVs, or make their way there from Glasgow Green or the city centre.

I only found it by accident one day, as I happened to be on the opposite side of London Road from my usual route heading towards the People’s Palace – and was bound for Bill’s Tool Store at The Barras. I doubt if I would have noticed it otherwise.

It needs more PROMINENCE!

This first pic gives an idea of what it looks like – for the uninitiated and strangers… it’s a roll of carpet:

Templeton Art 01

Templeton Art

As it’s some distance along London Road from the factory building itself, I wanted to catch the two together and place it in context.

Unfortunately, while it is possible to look back down the road and see the building, it’s largely hidden behind a couple of trees, and only the upper part is visible over those trees:

Templeton Art and factory

Templeton Art and factory

I guess this really needs to be redone when the trees are asleep for winter.

Lastly, the plaque attached to, and explaining the work:

Templeton Art Plaque

Templeton Art Plaque

March 29, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Crail Street mural in Parkhead

I don’t know what it is about this mural, but it took me years to grab a pic.

Either I totally forgot about it (Crail Street is a side street, and the mural is slightly hidden down it), or when I remembered… no camera.

Glasgow now has many PROPER murals (as opposed to the mindless splatterings of most graffiti vandals trying to emulate the worst one of all – name starts with a ‘B’ and I’ll give no more publicity to), but this one is notable for the amazing level of detail it contains – the more you look, the more you see. This is quite different from many of the others which, by way of contrast, are large versions of their subject, visible from a distance. View Crail Street from any significant distance and you’ll see very little.

Worth finding and taking a closer look at.

The BBC featured it in a programme – but I didn’t see it. I don’t watch enough television now (and I used to watch too much).

Crail Street mural

Crail Street mural

There’s clearly a story and plan behind this mural and its content – I just seem to be too thick to find it.

What I can say from looking closer is that it features representations of industries and businesses established in the area, icons that represent Glasgow, and illustration of many buildings from the surrounding area.


March 28, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , | Leave a comment

Night shots winding down and a Chevrolet Camaro V8 USA

I’ve always like night shots, from my early B&W film work which often fooled people as it could look like daytime shooting (until I pointed out the various anomalies), through the frustrations of poison yellow views captured under sodium street-lighting, to the joy of shooting hand-held night shots that genuinely look like daytime shots (again until anomalies are noted) thanks to the arrival of white LED street lights. The latter also being made possible by some amazing sensors in dSLRs combined with finding the right setting to go along with them.

I’d become so used to setting up for these shots that I’d almost forgotten how to cope with variations!

When I had to shoot both with a new (or at least seldom used long) lens recently, and under the dreaded sodium street lighting, all I got at first was yellow mush as the autofocus refused to kick in, the shots wanted so much exposure the anti-shake couldn’t cope, then the digital noise was so bad I thought I’d broken something. But, after a moment’s panic, I was able to restore at least reasonable and get the pics I wanted.

It was nice to get back to ‘normal’ night shot settings, which are almost point-and-shoot when correctly configured, and a far cry from the old days when working with film usually meant long exposures of many seconds, sometimes even more than the usual 30 second maximum provided.

This all came to mind as I was processing the pic below, which (need I say) was only caught because I could grab the shot in less than a second (before the subject sped off) hand-held, and did NOT need the long exposure and tripod, or some other fixed support, to allow the exposure film demanded.

Our new toys also mean we are spared the odd colour-shifts that could come with some films, and the grain of 400 or 800 ASA stock.

I couldn’t dredge up a quick set of details for this one, make no claims to be an expert, so can only guess it is a Chevrolet Camaro dating from around 2010 – and those rear lights came out rather nicely… two pairs of glasses!

Spot the almost cheeky grin formed in a reflection below the ‘pair’ on the right.

Chevrolet Camaro

Chevrolet Camaro


Deal with it

March 27, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

The neglected car themed bike racks of Cambuslang

Technically, this is an old pic, but a recent wander that went through the main street of Cambuslang showed that sadly, things look just the same now as the did some time ago.

While these look like some sort of interesting street art, it seems these actually fall under the category of ‘street furniture’, and are bike racks.

I’ve never seen a bike chained to one in any of my visits. But I have seen the large commercial bins leaning against them, one per side and hiding the rack entirely.

The sad thing notable in evening visits is that while these racks once sported a pair of up-lighters to highlight their appearance, these have been neglected, and of the five racks (ten lights) only ONE is still working today.

Guess I’ll just have to keep watching, and see if the last light goes out, never to to be lit again, or if they’re ever renewed – some nice long-lasting low power LEDs would do the job nicely now, and need little or no maintenance for years.

Cambuslang bike racks

Cambuslang bike racks

March 26, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder


From my collection of shop shutter murals, evidence that (L.A.) Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and that pink is the order of the day along this part of Shettleston Road.

In case you hadn’t noticed, this shop front is… PINK!

LA Beauty

LA Beauty

When I pass every day, I can’t help seeing…

Patrick Star

Patrick Star

I’m biased, but I preferred it when this shop was a butcher’s shop.

That was notable for the time a little black kitten was resident, which all the customers loved to visit.

All but one that is.

And the kitten had to go after someone registered an official complaint with the authorities about its presence in the shop.

March 25, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

The Illegals – LE13 GHG

Having seen the zeal with which the English Police Interceptors (seen on TV) seem to pull over illegally formed registrations/number plates, it seems very much to a casual observer that Police Scotland don’t see this as an offence worth dealing with on this side of the border.

I have a little collection of such plates, so might as well share.

Vauxhall Adam Jam – I have to confess I’d never even heard of this until I checked the correct format of the registration number.

Illegal spacing:

Vauxhall Adam Jam

Vauxhall Adam Jam [LE13 GHG]

March 24, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Transport | , | Leave a comment

Mountain bike mural

I seem to have collected a range of murals spotted while wandering around various places, and should really give them a mention.

I don’t mean the grand offerings now being given publicity and turned into tourist trails in the city, but simpler offerings just intended to brighten up local areas.

This one’s on the side of a container alongside a play area in Barlanark.

MTB container mural

MTB container mural

March 23, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

I used to be a nice house

I have to confess to forgetting I had this pic, and must have caught by chance when out wandering, as I barely recognised it when I came across it this morning.

It’s actually one I mentioned recently, today made inaccessible with chained fencing and overgrown trees and bushes left around it, but was at least approachable last year. The irony of things is that I’d probably have got hassle, or even a visit from the police if I’d gone further as it is overlooked and open to view from neighbouring properties (or was until the fence and overgrown garden hid it), yet the vandals that visit at night get ‘free access’ to do as they please. I get chased for just wanting to take a few pics – they get all the time they want to party, and then set fire.

While it’s now burnt out, trashed, and probably been left structurally insecure due to fire damage of the interior, based on a broadly similar house I know someone sold not too long ago (and bearing in mind that unknown features can significantly alter base value), it would probably be on the books for ‘Offers over £2oo k’ at an average guess, at the moment.

As it is, the value is probably now just that of the plot, unless somebody had deep pockets and didn’t care how much they threw at it to recover it, not impossible, just expensive.

I used to wonder how houses ended up like this.

Now I know it’s often the result of a family disaster or tragedy, or some sort of failure, eg business.

Derelict House


March 22, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

How to collect TWO personalised registrations at once

I don’t always trust my eyes, and there’s little point in me claiming any great abilities as regards my memory.

But I thought both had joined forces one day, and were conspiring to make sure I lost whatever little faith I might place in them.

I’d wandered past some road works and noticed the number plates on one of the lorries, and made a mental note to catch a pic on my way back.

On my way back…

Well, I’ll let the pics tell the story, and explain why I thought my eye/memory were playing tricks.

Looking good on the approach, and an interesting number:

Daldowie Trailer EEZ 2227

Daldowie Trailer

A little further on:

Daldowie Lorry RHZ 1622

Daldowie Lorry


March 21, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

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