Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Source of wisdom – The Inversnecky on Aberdeen’s beach front

A little while ago I was ‘gifted’ a view that I recognised as being from the area of The Inversnecky on the front, or esplanade, of Aberdeen’s beach.

See The secret inside hoMEOWner

A chance find this morning means I can not only add to that, and have not only found the source, but also a huge archive of earlier wisdom from the café.

See VinnieASL submitted images on imgur

Looks like someone there has been busy.

Good job they don’t have one of my old bosses there too…

Anybody with the time to make up and create those signs would have found themselves with a broom stuck up their backside to keep them busy, or walking the streets.

Oh wait… maybe Vinnie IS the boss!

Inversnecky Irony

Inversnecky Irony

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

Another Commonwealth Shames Legacy failure – sculptures nobody’s heard of

Having lived through the ridiculous months of disruption prior to 2014’s Commonwealth Shames nonsense (was all that really just for few DAYS of events?), and still see plenty of land that was razed to make way for… sorry, I have no idea, not to mention a WHOLE CARE HOME in Dalmarnock that still seems to be standing empty to this day, I tripped over another LEGACY FAILURE recently.

Passing the fire station in Polmadie’s Calder Street I spotted a cute sculpture beside the ‘staff’ entrance.

Commonwealth Discus Sculpture

Commonwealth Discus Sculpture

I expected it to related to the firefighters, but when I looked closer was amazed to find it was not, but was actually number 8 of 11, with the remainder scattered somewhere around Glasgow.

The plaque gives no details of the collection, their locations, or even where to find out about them.

Commonwealth Legacy Sculpture Plaque

Commonwealth Legacy Sculpture Plaque

As someone who had no interest in the nonsense, this collection is a dreadful failure and waste.

These should have been highlighted years ago, to make sure that people like me (NOT interested in the Shames) would have been made aware of this collection.

It’s a shame, as the sculpture actually looks quite good, and I’d like to see the rest of the collection.

Sadly, it’s lost as just another mess left behind that useless waste. Well, probably not useless if you were one of the lucky folk that picked up some of the £300 million+ squandered on it. (Let’s not forget the thousands of mugs volunteers who helped keep the cost down).

Glasgow faces up to reality of a divided Commonwealth Games legacy

I’ve found one sculpture for you…

See if you can go find the rest now.

Hint

They’re a secret, even online a simple search only brought up ONE reference – it gave only the background, a pic of the first one at Cowcaddens, and not as much a list identifying the rest.

Since I don’t want to be seen as kicking the concept of the statues or those responsible for their creation (I am, however, quite happy to be seen as mocking the Commonwealth Shames), here’s the intro:

Community fire stations across Glasgow will be home to lasting symbols of the 2014 Commonwealth Games thanks to the on-going partnership between the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS), the Scottish Prisons Service and Glasgow Life.

A series of sculptures created by prisoners at HMP Barlinnie will be installed in each of the city’s 11 stations, with the first officially unveiled Monday (16 June) at Cowcaddens.

SFRS offered the use of the city’s fire stations after Glasgow Life and HMP Barlinnie ran into difficulty when attempting to find suitable sites to place the then-planned sculptures.

So, all you have to do now is go find a list of the city’s 11 fire stations.

Nice one by the firefighters – pity they seem to have received little recognition or publicity for their efforts.

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

The view from the (Sheriff) court

I dropped in a pic OF the Sheriff Court building recently.

Just to be different, when I happened to be near that subject recently, I took a chance and walked closer, and thought it was time for something a little different.

A view FROM the court forecourt, showing where the first pic was taken from.

Clyde Street From Sheriff Court

Clyde Street From Sheriff Court

Apart from the River Clyde, and the spot where The Carrick (now City of Adelaide) used to sink every now and then (spot the two wider piers on the right descending from the white walkway fence, where the clipper was moored), there isn’t really anything worthy of note.

October 21, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , | Leave a comment

Any apple experts out there (before they kill me)?

I have a (usually) rather nice apple tree, which came with the back garden many years ago.

The apples are usually pretty good for eating, but some of the dry years we’ve had in the past meant they were off the menu. While it was a guess on my part, in those hot, arid years, the apples tended to crack and split while still on the branch, something I put down to dehydration and dry ground.

I never proved that thought, but the only thing I ever found that looked similar appeared be called ‘Star Disease’, and while the apples looked similar, none of the other symptoms seemed to apply, and even the online accounts were light on detail.

Our summers have now returned to their cooler and wetter days, this condition seems to have almost gone away, and I’ve been eating the apples for a few years.

But…

This year has not been good, despite appearances.

I sampled the crop a few weeks ago – and let’s just say I was ill afterwards.

The apples seemed the most likely cause, as I wasn’t trying anything else new or suspect.

But, I didn’t believe it, and after recovering, decided to try them again.

Unfortunately, while not as much ‘fun’ as that first tasting, I can’t say the result means I’m in any hurry to have a third ‘tasting’.

Also, in the intervening period I noticed this crop is not responding well to being stored.

In previous years, I’ve kept them all the way up to, and past, the New Year, with the only downside being that by then they’re tending to dry up a bit, and the skins can look a little shrivelled.

Not this lot.

Still (in October) some two months away from the New Year milestone, this lot will never last that long.

When I checked them, I found that many had become dark, discoloured, and soft.

Others had actually gone completely rotten, turned dark and soft, and even had (white) mould on their surface.

This is new, not seen in past years, and closer inspection shows that many of the remainder already show evidence of this rot setting in already.

Not good, and it’s worth noting I wash them after collecting them. I don’t store them piled up and/or touching. I also discard any that show any damage or discolouration immediately, so they never even get stored. In past years all I do is leave them on the floor in a spare room, where they usually sit undisturbed, and I usually spot the few that have been damaged/bruised, and they get picked out and dumped.

But this lot is almost going rotten as I watch.

This pic gives an idea, although the worst were all dumped a while ago – these are just what I collected this morning, plus some tiny ones just being dumped. These all looked and felt fine a week ago.

One additional thing I’ve noted now is that they are rapidly losing any shine they once had, and are becoming matt and dull, even before they become discoloured and go soft.

Sad…

Rotting Apples

Rotting Apples

October 20, 2017 Posted by | Appeal, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Surprise gallery find in Nicholson Street next to Sheriff Court

For various reasons I tend to shy away from the area near the Sheriff Court, but passing nearby during the weekend, when the place was shut, I decided to ‘Confront The Phobia’ and walk past the façade.

Once past, I almost missed the pale ‘sandwich board’ style sign in Nicholson Street, and with its faint print almost failed to see it was not just a piece of wood abandoned there, but had something printed on it.

Looking closer, it marked the site of a new(ish) gallery (and arts collective) that opened in 2016 – but has no sign on the building (that’s not a criticism – I assume the rules for the area prohibit such a horrible thing on those buildings).

This is my second ‘surprise’, after coming across the Civic Room in High Street.

I have to admit to being a little intrigued at this find, since most of the premises there are given over to assorted legal practices, which we are usually told make an absolute fortune in legal fees, so are the only ones able to afford the cost of being established at such an address.

I was surprised to see the gallery open, but as the area (and gallery) were deserted… I chickened out and just looked in the window rather than venture in. There’s nothing worse than being somewhere you’ve no real reason to be – and have eyes burning into your back.

16 Nicholson Street Gallery

16 Nicholson Street Gallery

The sign.

Nicholson Street Gallery Sign

Nicholson Street Gallery Sign

Find the gallery online here:

16 Nicholson Street

October 20, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

No chance of infection in Tollcross Park, just a spot of fungus

Funny how it’s possible to wander around a place and completely miss something in plain sight.

I’d never noticed this old drinking fountain before, yet it lies near at least one path within the park.

I understand most, if not all, of these fountains have been killed off for fear of their being a potential source of infection, and sharing nasty diseases between users. At one time, they were numerous.

As can be seen, it has not only been disabled, but also smashed. Whether the latter is down to the park, or vandals, is unclear. Regardless, nobody’s going to be using this one.

Then again, it may have been a cunning plan by the scurrilous vendors of one of today’s greatest scandals – BOTTLED WATER – as they systematically destroyed all free sources of water to boost their criminal sales. But, that’s another story.

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Wrecked

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Wrecked

A wander around the remains revealed a fortunate survivor of this particular wrecking effort, including discovery of full details of the manufacturer.

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Detail

Tollcross Drinking Fountain Detail

One day, I’ll not only ready up on the definition of the difference between mushrooms and toadstools… I’ll also REMEMBER it!

So just have this bonus pic taken nearby, and we’ll settle for ‘fungus’ to save time.

Tollcross Park Tree Fungus

Tollcross Park Tree Fungus

Embarrassment

Let’s not miss a chance to embarrass those in charge of this mess…

Which didn’t get the benefit of a SINGLE PENNY from the sham fiasco of the LASTING LEGACY of the 2014 GLASGOW COMMONWEALTH SHAMES.

Tollcross Winter Gardens January 2017

Tollcross Winter Gardens January 2017

October 19, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Barras Woman mural revisited

Curiosity got the better of me, following the original post on the ‘Woman’ mural I found I had an old pic of, and which is now largely obscured by some recently completed offices.

Sad to say, there’s little chance of this being spotted nowadays, unless by someone who knows it’s there.

It’s completely hidden from Moncur Street now, and without knowing it’s there, there’s little chance of spotting it in passing.

This was just a random shot I must have collected some time ago, when the construction of the container-based offices was just commencing.

Moncur Street Construction

Moncur Street Construction

And here’s how they ended up.

Can you see the Woman?

Moncur Street Containers

Moncur Street Containers

Here’s WHAT the containers are for.

Cultural Enterprise Office

Cultural Enterprise Office

OH!

Almost forgot…

If you head along the lane between the buildings, you can still just about catch the mural through the office’s gate.

Woman Mural Through Gate

Woman Mural Through Gate

October 18, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | Leave a comment

Briggait views

Looking at some past pics I’d collected of the Briggait – Glasgow’s former fish market – I noticed it was another building that could be hard to get a clear or undistorted view of.

Starting at the rear, it’s hard to get the whole thing in, or (without fancy lenses) avoid some aspect of distortion.

Briggait Rear

Briggait Rear

While I was guilty of holding the camera carelessly, I could edit that out, but this was still just about as much as I could capture since I wanted to be sure of including the detail at the top of the roof, and fill the frame with this part of the building.

I tried catching it from the other side, which meant stitching some multiple shots, and while it came out better than expected (you’re lucky not to be seeing the original horror), there are some weird angles in the end result, once you look closer.

Briggait Rear Stitch

Briggait Rear Stitch

Wandering round to the front… just brings a different problem.

Briggait Front

Briggait Front

Two fairly obvious issues – or one pair of scrawny trees sitting in just the wrong place (for my poor lens anyway).

Moving in closer to remover them from view just meant I had to stitch multiple shots again, this time producing a massive bulge.

Partly my fault as I had to stand in the wrong place, and while I was able to edit some of it out, it was so pronounced I had to limit the correction, and a closer look at the edges of the final effort shows these were being distorted and bent.

Briggait Front Stitch

Briggait Front Stitch

I KNOW I should just shut up, stop moaning, and be grateful I have an image at all…

But sometimes my OCD/perfectionist gene just kicks in, and won’t shut up.

October 17, 2017 Posted by | photography | | Leave a comment

Whitevale 2015 and Whitevale 2017

It’s been a while since my wanderings took me along that part of the Gallowgate that passes the remains of the old Whitevale Baths building.

By coincidence, I noticed I had passed the same spot almost exactly two years ago to the day, and taken a pic of the demolition of the high flats in the background coming to an end. Although I collected quite a few pics back then, I’m afraid I never got around to using any of them, but the ‘Top Down’ demolition process was interesting to watch. I have little doubt that Fred Dibnah would have been pleased, ad he didn’t see, to be too impressed by the dynamite men, and was happier to start at the top with his hammer and chisel, working his way to the ground.

However, it’s not really the flats that interested me on this occasion, but the clearance that has taken place on the former baths’ site in the foreground.

I always find this area slightly alarming (as regard my age and the fact that I still appear to be alive), as I can remember when the area in the foreground (the grassy bit between the footpath and the baths) was developed as a small row of flats with parking for the residents in the courtyard behind. Also, although not visible in either of these pics, there was also a small area of housing development built on the land to the left, bounded by the Bellgrove Hotel.

I find it hard to believe that BOTH have been razed. NEITHER was ‘old’ in terms of building life, and I wonder WHY they were vanished.

I would probably not have noticed this disappearance but for the fact that the bus I travelled on stopped in front of the small flats I mentioned, and I had noticed that the owner of a unique Classic car lived there, and their example of that car was one of only a handful that then remained on the road in Scotland. By the time I was old enough not be ‘Some daft kid’, the flats had gone, so I never even got the chance to talk to the owner.

The marque concerned was bankrupted in the early 1960s, but was reborn a couple of years ago – I might do a post about it one day, as it is succeeding in re-establishing itself.

Whitevale 2015-2017

Whitevale 2015-2017

I took this façade pic some time ago, but never used it – it was horribly skewed and distorted. I must have moved before the shutter fired, or just got it wrong.

But I’ve began to get the hang of perspective correction, so did a quick fix, and now it’s presentable.

As always… nice coat of arms

Whitevale Baths

Whitevale Baths

October 16, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Clyde Tidal Weir – still working

Sad to say, this is actually the first opportunity I’ve had to get anywhere near the Clyde Tidal Weir since its recent disaster.

Not that there was really anything new to see, since it was repaired within a few days.

There might have been more to see if I’d remembered about the damage reported to the nearby south bank (near the distillery and flats), but I was concentrating more on the road home, thinking I was going to be close to walking 20 miles by the time I finished the day, and not wanting to overdo it by adding another couple (turns out I could have, as my estimate proved to be a couple of miles light after I saw the GPS log).

Still looking good, especially with that nice clean stonework (and no more soot to turn it black).

Clyde Tidal Weir From West

Clyde Tidal Weir From West

 

Clyde Tidal Weir From East

Clyde Tidal Weir From East

These pics (or the originals, and the top one, from the west) were weird when I processed them.

Although I would have sworn both were perfectly level when I hit the shutter, the originals are way off the horizontal (15-20 degrees).

Don’t know about anyone else, but I find this often to be the case, and I should perhaps be clear that I’m referring to the camera (or pic) being at an angle to the horizon or horizontal, NOT converging verticals or similar perspective distortion (which I deal with separately).

While the second pic looks just about right, the first one was a real problem to correct.

It was taken off-centre, standing near the left bank.

When I aligned the vertical, the image looked worse than the slightly rotated original, and the alignment still looked ‘off’.

Although it was not horizontal, I tried setting the top of weir horizontal – this actually looked better, and the weir no longer appeared to be trying to slide out of the pic – but the building and chimney were now lying at an angle.

Time for a compromise – I split the difference, with the bias being on the verticals. Well, verticals HAVE to be vertical, don’t they?

In this case, they lean a little to the right, but when I made them true verticals, the slope of the weir seemed to create the illusion that it was at the wrong angle.

 

October 14, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, council, Maritime, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Sheldon – another missing cat from long ago

Hunter Street is not (for me at least) a Glasgow street name that rolls off the tongue with any sort of immediate familiarity.

In fact, most days I would have to go find it on a map (which I had to in order to work out where I saw this old missing cat poster).

I’ve no idea how old this one was when I first saw it, unfortunately the rain had got at, despite it being firmly attached with duct tape – it might still be there!

Spread the word…

DATING these posters helps.

To be FAIR – this one does carry the date (9 September), but I’ve no idea if that refers to the year I spotted it,  as I didn’t spot it in September, but some time later, and think the original year was 2015.

It’s interesting to note that most of those I’ve seen recently, and included here, have mostly carried a date to show when the cat went missing, so the idea seems to be catching on.

Sheldon went missing on the old railway in the area of Calton/Bridgeton – I wonder if he was found?

Missing Cat Sheldon

Missing Cat Sheldon

October 13, 2017 Posted by | Lost, photography | , , , , , | Leave a comment

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