British Weather …
Well I have to start with Dog really don’t I? Dog excelled himself this morning … I was busy watching geese – they were flying n parallel skeins and then one group swung round and gathered each group on route until they were one large skein. Dog obviously knows the geese are there somewhere from the noise but he doesn’t work out they are in the sky so he was bored waiting until he found a live thing, he told me (by pointing) that he had found a live thing, he dug the live thing out of it’s nest and tried to retrieve it to show me – problem being live thing was a prickly curled up hedgehog! HPR is not standing for Hunt Point and Retrieve it is standing for Hedgehog Point and Retrieve (this is his second in 6 months!)
The ball of prickles was huffing and puffing when I told Dog to move away and Hup. He tried to return for more fun and was sternly told to stay where he was so I could pull my sleeves don and carefully pick up the grumpy prickly live and unhurt thing and replace it in the nest it was pulled out of. Fortunately, having read up on it, it is not looking like it was it’s hibernation nest so he will toddle off and find somewhere else. Dog has since been licking his lips alot – I don’t think this is because he is hungry but because he got spiked and it serves him right!
I had spotted in the local paper that a visitor had returned to Dundee docks this week so I thought I would pop down and take some pictures of the Rowan Norway
It was not great photography conditions – steady rain! I had my cagoule on under my shell jacket – one of the things I hate about wearing a waterproof on the outside is the rain runs down and sheets off onto trousers, making it’s way down into walking boots – horrid. My camera was in a plastic bag when I wasn’t using it – not ideal because it is not breathable – and some of the pictures were spoiled by raindrops or misting! I will just have to make the sacrifice and go again!
I saw some boat activity on the walk from Stannergate, along the Grassy Beach and into the Ferry – some powerful launches, some rib rescue boats, some dinghies and a container ship.
I also enjoyed the cormorants fishing displays and managed to catch one of them diving on film. I did not enjoy the rain at all and by the time I reached the Ferry I was very hot inside my waterproof layer and my shell was soaked. I managed to find Costa and get a green tea and a loo. Whilst there I had a brainwave – was there a launderette in the Ferry – no only is there one but Grossi’s open on Sundays I was able to pop in and dry my shell. After that I stood in a shop doorway to eat my goats cheese, spelt and roast carrot salad before making a hasty visit to the harbour area. There I found the tide was right in – I was able to stand on an unfenced quay with water swishing a few feet below me … no vertigo!
Sadly I had put the camera away since the weather was just awful – the first thing I saw at the harbour was a seal bobbing around – but my phone camera wasn’t up to the job. However, the local swans sailed gracefully over to say hello – there were 19 altogether, including this years cygnets, and with patient direction from their photographer we were able to get a group shot of all of them courtesy of my mobile phone camera.
Enough of my animal magic stuff … on the return bus ride the driver stopped for an old boy who wasn’t at the stop. When the chap clambered on he couldn’t find his bus pass … he was handing the driver all kinds of things like a bank pass book – a very vulnerable older person in our city. Eventually the driver issued him a ticket – not something he should have done according to the company but I think the morally right thing to have done.
When I got to Costa there were two small boys sitting on the stairs reading. I had to ask them to move the books off the step so I could go up for a coffee. I am thrilled to see youngsters reading – but these were not their own books, these were book store books. As I sat drinking my coffee I watched as they dropped books on the floor, opened them too hard damaging the spines and I couldn’t help but wonder why their parents think that is okay.
I had two other encounters – the first was a gentleman I have seen on the bus the past few Sundays who had asked me if I work on Sundays since they always see me. I had explained I was off to take photographs. On the return journey he stopped to ask if I am a professional photographer … I laughed and said “I wish” … what a great way to earn a living – being paid to do something one loves! Then he asked a curious question – did I do photography with a regional mental health charity … it has set ideas rolling in my head!
The other encounter saddened me. At the bus station three young lads had been waiting quietly and well behaved for over 30 minutes. When their bus pulled in people streamed out of the building and formed a very disorderly queue. One of the youngsters went to step forward to the bus and an older woman said in a very curt tone “there is a queue here – wait your turn”. Madam not only was your comment mean spirited – since they had been waiting a long time when there was no sight of you – but it turned out that English was not the native tongue – how embarrassing! The youngsters stood patiently until around 30 people had boarded the bus in front of them and only one of the three was travelling.
I have been thinking during the week about customer service … without respect for other people any concept of the value of customer service is diluted.
The kite has remained unflown again this week – so disappointing and I am starting to get withdrawal symptoms – oh for a decent breeze and dry weather?