Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Still more Catbutt

We’ve actually got vaguely warm days in Scotland at the moment (although you’d be a making a BIG mistake of you left home without waterproofs or a brollie – the showers are out for revenge).

Such days bring the cats out, but don’t make them any easier to get a pic (not here, at least).

I spotted a black cat across the road, walking parallel to me and thought I might get lucky – of course, it ducked through the nearest hedge once I fired up the silly compact.

I then saw another one beside a car in a drive, but all were in shade and the same colour, so silly compact would never have seen it.

Then, almost 30 metres away and sitting in a back garden, a smart-looking tuxedo cat – zipped the compact up to 10x zoom, spotted the cat in the screen (no fast viewfinder in toy cameras), hit the shutter, and…

By the time the compact woke up, focussed, set the shot and finally fired – the cat’s sixth sense had clicked in and it was OFF!

Still, at least I got ANOTHER catbutt to add to my collection.

Another Catbutt

Another Catbutt

August 15, 2017 Posted by | photography | , | Leave a comment

International Cat Day, 8 August – Go discover LoveMeow

Funny how the simplest of jobs can defeat you, and after starting this post on the 8th, ended up finishing it a day late and having to backdate it. Not my fault, just my usual luck and unable to get it finished on the day.

Established in 2002 by the International Fund for Animal Welfare, I may be wrong, but it doesn’t seem to have a dedicated web page, so no link, just the date, 8 August.

The delay did at least let me look in my collection for a magnificent cat pic, and was also a little sad, as the examples all seem to be from some years ago. I used to get the occasional visitor, some of which wandered in the door as if they lived here, or owned the place, sometimes even curling up on a seat. But not for years now, and even those I do see are so nervous I seldom get near. As for touching them? I don’t even try now for fear that as soon as I (slowly) move a hand towards them they will take off across the road and get run over, and it will have been my fault.

No such problem with past visitor, once a regular, and happy to roll around in the dust and dirt on the ground so I could never get a velvety smooth clean pic of this little black panther.

Black Cat Relaxes

Black Cat Relaxes

Go visit LoveMeow

I have to give a mention to a cat site I came across recently:

LoveMeow Logo

In their own words:

About Love Meow: is cat lovers’ site dedicated to spreading the meowsage of love for our furry friends. We often help local shelters and rescue groups get their word out and encourage more hoomans to consider adoption. Giving a little kitty a second chance at life is incredibly rewarding.

There are some great rescue stories in there, but one warning: If it takes little to bring a tear to your eye, I suggest you go buy some boxes of tissues, or fetch a towel BEFORE diving into this one!

Sadly, our media, even in Scotland, is full of stories about people abusing and killing cats for nothing more than their warped sense of personal pleasure.

Equally sadly, the chances of their being caught are slim, as they are cowards and hide their activities carefully (and may even be organised criminals involved in illegal gambling centred on animal fights).

I should say ‘Perverse activities’ as it seems there are a number of studies published which suggest their activities are not just aimed at small defenceless animals, but are likely to be practice for their real interest, as child molesters in later life.

Seriously, if you someone who harms animals for pleasure or ‘fun’…


August 8, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

At last – a cat pic!

It’s been a bad summer for cat pics, just not sunny or warm enough to tempt them away from the nice, dry, indoors.

I’ve seen a few, but no chance of catching a pic.

There was the black one I saw sitting behind a gate – pitch dark night, of course.

A slinky long-furred redhead last night, which I know would bolt as soon as I moved near as it was obviously wound up like a tight spring and ready to run.

And I even saw one setting up an alibi, and had clearly just been involved in some crime, as it sped out of one house, across the road like a blur, only to reappear seconds later in the distant back garden, licking/washing its paw and looking as if it had been sat there all day, and was completely innocent.

But I got lucky and found a settled sitting in a window, and unlike most did not stand up, stretch, and walk away as I reached for a camera.

Classic black cat, two furballs stuck together with a pair of ears and a pair of eyes stuck on. If it’s a Scottish Fold you can forget the ears, and if the eyes are closed, you can leave them out too!

Hope its right eye is OK, as there is dark patch at the bottom, maybe just a recent injury.

Black Cat Odd Eye

BBC – Budhill Black Cat (Odd Eye)

There was an irritating black wire hanging across this window, which ruined it, and I couldn’t avoid.

I decided to give a semi-automated tool I picked up for dealing with such intrusions a try. I don’t usually bother as dealing with such things invisibly can burn up silly amounts of time, but for a less than careful use of this little toy, and only two minutes’ worth of effort, it seems to have done a fair job of ridding the pic of that particular distraction.

August 3, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

He’s behind me, isn’t he?

So, there I was, quietly eyeing up the next potential shot (just a photograph… this time), and that creepy “Somebody’s watching me” feeling arrives. Yet there’s almost nobody else around.

I look around, with a little more care, and sure enough, sitting at a window behind me, and watching carefully – one of feline overlords.

I grabbed a quick pic as I knew this character would disappear the moment it knew I was returning the favour, and watching back.

It’s not a good pic and doesn’t do this rather nice tortie justice, but the quick shot meant the camera focus locked on the nearest feature, in this case the left edge of the window, and refused to budge no matter what buttons I poked.

Tollcross Road Cat Watch

Tollcross Road Cat Watch

But what about the spooky hooded skull reflection?

I wonder if really was the cat that was watching me though.

Look just above its head and right ear – is that a hooded spectre?

Some would say it’s just a reflection (of a car wheel).

But it looks so much like a hooded skull – and that would better explain my feeling of unease.

I could have turned around and had a look…

If I had, I’d probably have seen him – and his pal:

Masked Camo Warriors

Masked Camo Warriors

Glad I didn’t turn around, and just kept on walking.

July 27, 2017 Posted by | photography, Surveillance | , , , | Leave a comment

The replacement we need for Dali’s iconic work, Christ of St John of the Cross

It’s already well known that Dali’s Christ of St John of the Cross is set to leave Kelvingrove and begin a series of world tours from September 2017 will see the painting go on loan to the Royal Academy of Arts in London, returning in summer 2018: Salvador Dali painting to leave Glasgow on loan

I don’t think I saw any mention of what will take its place, but I’m guessing a copy will take its place, to mitigate some of the disappointment visitors may suffer.


Given that Dali was the creator of the original, perhaps this find from the interwebs might suggest a possible alternative, which would also pay tribute, or ‘cat tax’ to our feline overlords:

Dali Melting Cat

Dali Melting Cat

July 19, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, council | , , , , , | Leave a comment

For once I was really pleased to see catbutt

I better explain catbutt, as per this previous post.

I first ‘met’ this rather nice white cat some years ago (about three) but never got anywhere near it, and only managed one pic, but did like the way it sat near its ‘My Garden’ sign.

Sad to say, I have never seen in those three years, not even once, and had thought the worst – didn’t stay in ‘My Garden’ and wandered into the road. The street is sometimes something of a ‘Rat Run’ due to the presence of a sometimes slow set of traffic lights on the adjacent main road, and those who use Rat Runs routinely tend not to be the best of drivers.

But last night brought a pleasant surprise, even it was only ‘catbutt’, and even though I decided not to get any closer.

One of the reasons I only ever had one pic was because by the time I said ‘He…’ if I did stop for a pic and a chat, the garden would already be empty. So I decided to cut my losses and get the pic – even if it was the ‘wrong’ end.

I’m just pleased she/he’s still there and in good health.

Maybe I’ll see if I can get as far as ‘Hel…’ next time.

My Garden Cat Revisited

My Garden Cat Revisited


July 9, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | 1 Comment

Spoilt Rotten Cat

I’m sure a funny sign I pass quite often must have been inspired by this old joke:

Stranger: Mr Smith, your son is spoilt.

Mr Smith: He is not, I’ve brought him up properly.

Stranger: I didn’t say you spoilt him, but that road roller…

Spoilt Rotten Cat Sign

Spoilt Rotten Cat Sign

I’m sure this isn’t the one I wanted to catch a pic of.

That one was bigger, and even funnier, with the longer text of…


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

Good News – Clara has been found!

Good news for a change (and I, for one, need some).

Deciding to take a random late night walk to the shops, I noticed a soggy piece of paper flapping in the trunk of one the trees in a park I often cut through.

Whatever I expected to see, it wasn’t what I found, but at least it made the walk to the shops worthwhile.

A ‘Thank You’ note from Clara’s human, letting folk know the lost cat was now a found cat!

Found Clara

Found Clara




Seriously, this is great to see.

I’ve come across so many ‘Lost’ posters in recent walks, and apart from the problem of them not having a date on them (so there’s no way to tell if they are recent, or not so recent), it’s also impossible to tell if they were any use, and the cat was found.

That’s just an observation, I realise there’s not much can be done about that. After all, the humans have better things to do if there is a find, I think what I’m really just noting is that while I’ve found quite a few ‘Lost’ posters, this is the first ‘Found’ one I’ve ever come across.


June 29, 2017 Posted by | Appeal, Civilian | , , | Leave a comment

Clara is missing in Sandyhills

Another set of posters in the area tells of another missing cat.

Having been sort of housebound for a few weeks, I kind of snapped and just went out for a mindless wander to cover a few miles, and was disappointed to find that another appeal to help find a lost cat.

I’m guessing this one has been missing for a week, but it’s never possible to be sure as the posters generally just refer to ‘last Sunday’ and omit any sort of date, so it could be a week, or it could be weeks. There’s no way to tell.

I’ve seen some of these posters up for months on some of my walks, and looking reasonably fresh if originally well made.

However, these are just plain paper, so have to be only from last weekend.

Clara Missing Cat

Clara Missing Cat

June 26, 2017 Posted by | Appeal, Civilian, Lost | , , , | Leave a comment

Hope the cat is OK and got a new home

Spotted this sad and sorry sight on the way home recently.

I hope the resident wasn’t injured in the collapse of their home, but then again, it might have been their own fault, and the place just couldn’t stand the strain of all those ‘pussy pound’ bearing down on it, and just gave up one day.

Fat Cat Broken Home

Fat Cat Broken Home

This may be a build defect which the local planning authority has failed to catch during the inspection and approval process, as many similar cases of cats becoming homeless after such a disaster can be found online.

Perhaps it is not actually the cats that are the cause, but poorly designed and manufactured perches.

Perhaps we need the Americans to raise the first multi-million dollar class action against the manufacturers and suppliers of these potentially deadly high-rise structures, so that responsibility for failures can be properly established in court?

Online example of imminent and actual failure:

Fat Cat Broken Perch

Fat Cat Broken Perch

June 6, 2017 Posted by | Lost, photography | , , , , | Leave a comment

My Garden – see the cat if you want to argue

This is kind of sad.

The cat is gorgeous white, but was always as nervous as anything – which is actually the norm for nearly all the cats around here, wherever they might be when you spot them.

Very few ever stay still long enough to get within arm’s length, let alone touch.

I’m seriously beginning to forget what a cat feels like!

I never got any closer than this pic – any closer to the fence and all that was left was a white blur, and a pair of ‘eyes on stalks’ watching from behind the shrubs.

Also, I never saw it again after a few weeks, so it was either lost, became a house cat, or maybe went to a new home.

My Garden Cat

My Garden Cat

June 3, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , | 1 Comment

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