Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Small update on the Waverley

I happened to pass the Waverley and the Queen Mary last night.

There had been an article in the media the day before, but it just appeared to be a repeat of the appeal story.

Now, I think whoever wrote it forgot to include the current figure for the fund, as reported in this article from tonight.

DONATIONS to save the Paddle Steamer Waverley have now exceeded half-a-million-pounds following the iconic steamship’s withdrawal from service earlier this summer.

The major appeal which was officially launched in June aims to raise the £2.3 million needed to fit new boilers on the Waverley and return her to service in 2020.

Waverley’s general manager Paul Semple said: “Thanks to the fantastic public response to our Save The Waverley Boiler Refit Appeal we have reached a key milestone in our fund-raising campaign.

“To date over 4,000 individuals have donated with some of our core supporters giving a ‘once in a lifetime donation’ knowing that we urgently need funds to secure Waverley’s future.

“In addition, we have received offers of help from several organisations and companies, but we will need further help to get Waverley’s paddles turning again.”

Several fund-raising events have taken place in the various towns and villages which Waverley serves.

Save The Waverley fund-raising appeal passes £500,000

PS Waverley Science Centre Glasgow Tower TS Queen Mary

PS Waverley Science Centre Glasgow Tower TS Queen Mary

08/08/2019 Posted by | Appeal, Civilian, Maritime, photography, Transport | , | Leave a comment

Alive and well – angry old bike hating man of Glasgow

Very angry old man

These guys aren’t a joke – and really do exist.

Last night’s was a real foul-mouthed boozer I was unfortunate enough to pass, propped up against the railings outside the Fiveways Inn at Parkhead Cross.

At close to 11 pm and with apparently deserted streets I thought I was safe enough to slip off the road at the lights outside the pub since I was about to turn left into Duke Street. Regular travellers passing through those lights will know there’s time to boil a kettle and have some tea while waiting for them to change, as it’s a 5-way junction with awkward alignment that almost allow only one road at a time to flow.

I amble along the footpath when I am on it (for whatever reason – bearing in mind when a cyclist arrives at their destination they can’t teleport their bike and make it disappear), as opposed to whizzing along at 15-20 mph like some, yet as I passed (probably boozed up) angry old bike hating man I got a volley of abuse as regards being on the pavement.

Pity it was just about dark – I’ve decided to honour them with a pic. All their efforts in the name of pedestrian safety deserve to be rewarded.

It’s amazing, as I’d done a 16-mile round trip to Partick, on the road, and yes, on the pavement in that area, which like Parkhead has a number of shared cycle/pedestrian areas, all with no problems. In fact, in the west end, as opposed to the east end’s abuse, it’s almost embarrassing as people apologise and get out of the way of cyclists. Unlike the east end, the west end is full of cyclists, and despite the higher numbers and greater density, cyclists and pedestrians seem to be able to coexist without confrontation.

Parkhead Fiveways Inn

Parkhead Fiveways Inn


This writer may be on to something:

I blame the lurid Lycra itself. Cyclists become ‘other’ once they don garish, overly-tight costumes

The anger directed towards cyclists is ridiculous when so many of us ride bicycles

For what it’s worth, I DON’T wear Lycra (and never will), and actually see those who do as ‘other’, and avoid them.

However, I’d also suggest we (ordinary cyclists) need to start getting our own house in order, and do something about the self-appointed cycling activists and campaigners who are becoming far too aggressive.

Many of them are probably well-meaning, but the mouthy and impatient few are beginning to become more of a liability that a benefit, and causing reasonable people to take an anti-cycling stance, instead of being supportive.

08/08/2019 Posted by | Civilian, Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

McLaren driver lost in the east end

An orange 2018 McLaren 570 seen sitting in Parkhead’s Forge Retail Park?

Surely not buying cheap stuff from a clearance outlet?

Then again, how else can one save the pennies to buy (and run) toys like this?

My last insurance quote was around £6 to £7 k.

I wonder how much of my £2.60 bus ticket contributes to the bus’s insurance?

And if they’d charge more if I told them I was not just sitting quietly, but taking pics from my seat?

Parkhead McLaren 570

Parkhead McLaren 570

08/08/2019 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Today is International Cat Day

08 August is International cat Day.

Apparently dating from 2002, International Cat Day was created by IFAW, the International Fund for Animal Welfare, and sets aside a full 24 hours to honour our feline overlords., who also just happen to be the most popular pet on the planet (they say).

It’s only an estimate, but it’s thought that something in the order of 500 million ‘fluffs’ are sharing space with us somewhere.

And the good news is that owning a cat has been shown to improve mental health and to relieve stress, anxiety, and depression.

Seems fair.

Cat Overlord

Cat Overlord


If anyone ever offers you the chance to take a look through their ‘special’ glasses (you know, the ones that let you see what ‘THEY’ don’t want you to see) I strongly suggest NOT looking at your cat.

They just might work, and…

Cat Demon

Cat Demon

Another update

I don’t know where they hide them, but this year we have cats from Glasgow (just not from wherever I am).

See the gallery in this article.

Check out Glasgow’s adorable International Cat Day photos

08/08/2019 Posted by | Civilian | | Leave a comment

Today is Odie Day

08 August is Odie Day.

We had Garfield Day, now…

Odie is characterised as a tremendously credulous and brainless dog, but he is also shown to be extremely caring and loving. Garfield is seen to play on Odie’s gullibility by pushing him off objects, or just making fun of him. But the important thing to realise is that their relationship is distinguished by their playfulness and love for one another.

Despite the apparent mistreatment, Garfield would never harm Odie, or let him come to harm.



08/08/2019 Posted by | Civilian | | Leave a comment

Today is Scottish Wildcat Day

08 August is Scottish Wildcat Day.

The Scottish Wildcat is one remaining species of the wildcats that used to roam the world before they became domesticated and tolerated humans.

The Highland Tiger has been roaming the land for some time, when it first appeared in Scotland it was clear that it had crossed the land bridge from Europe to the British Isles. As  man began competing for wild game birds, he also began killing off the native population of Scottish Wildcats. Now they’re slowly disappearing. Every year they face threats that reduce their numbers, from predation to being bred out by domesticated species.

Back in 1981, Scotland recognized the danger facing its native wildcat and began to take steps to help protect it under the United Kingdom Wildlife and Countryside Act. Even so, it’s possible that truly pure wildcats have already ben lost due to hybridization. There’s more – domesticated cats continue to pose a threat to wildcats, their intermingling brings disease to them, including feline calicivirus and the fatal feline leukaemia virus.

Scottish Wildcat Day is a day to remember the importance of protecting species like this, which have a long history, but are slowly disappearing from the world.

It would be nice to think back over the past year and mention something significant, but whatever progress there ever is is slow.

And, if what passed for my memory is anything to go by, me recollection is that the main news was the numbers are probably lower than previously thought, and cross-breeding between the species has probably diluted most of the pure stock.

Palacerigg wildcat


08/08/2019 Posted by | Civilian | | 1 Comment


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