Saturday, 15 May 2010

Wyndham, a visit

Wymondham AbbeyImage via Wikipedia
My sister in law and i visited a nearby small town called Wyndham.  There is a huge old Abbey there, a walk through woods by a small river. 

there is also a brilliant little clothes shop with tea shop (like Loopy Lorna's in Edinburgh but smaller) including an outside courtyard to sit in.  amazing clothes some of them created out of several other garments - quite individual.  just looking though.  we both wishes we were 20 years younger and slightly slimmer like we used to be!  The tea was good tho.  then next stop was the old fashioned sweetie shop were we bought real fruit jellies, some amazing mint things and some outstanding ginger cream things. 

Wymondham Abbey to give it its proper name, was first of all a monastery founded in 1107 by William D'Albini.  In 1448 it became an Abbey.  During the dissolution of Henry VIII the monastic buildings were demolished as well as part of the church - so it is now half its original size.

There are two wooden vaulted ceilings, one above the chapel, the main higher one obviously in the main church, which are quite outstanding.  anyway i always find the old architecture amazing, and the atmosphere in these ancient churches quite powerful.
The Abbey

and part of the ruins

a walk by the river through the woods

the old pub

and the arts centre (converted old church)


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Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Post election thoughts

Welcome Home Gordie!

So here i am on a train south to england, to visit brother and family. sitting with my laptop and free wifi on board. fab. not that long ago i didnt even have a landline. progress. it has to be said tho that to use the wifi service on the train you are required to have the patience of a saint.


I dont really need to go online now.  We have all this technology (just seen a heron in a tree) so we all expect to be able to use it as and when we desire. our demands increase as technology advances. our idea of our 'rights' change as technology advances, slightly, subtley perhaps, but they do.


i would rather be sitting here with sketchbook drawing, but, funny to say, this is easier.


So with the upheaval in the country after the election; and yesterday's outcome of a Lib-Con - or 'con-dem' as someone has dubbed it - coalition, many people are still waking up to what it all might mean.  Facebook has a 'they have no mandate to govern in Scotland' thing going, to which already 1,000s of people seem to have joined.  Including me.  I was looking at another facebook 'thing' called, i think - democracy in action - or something.  Anyway, i first of all clicked on the 'like' button, but as days went by in this hung parliament state, i read more and more comments the contents of which made me wish i could unclick the 'like' button. so many ill-informed comments which was sad, and a lot of just plain ignorant generalisations peppered with sweary-words.  No debate really, just little smatterings of people trying to have a debate in vain i fear, it just turned me right off.  I thought about democracy and realised this is it; and its what i believe in, including freedom of speech, so .. so be it.

oh and then there was another facebook 'thing' after the con-lib decision which was called something like 'fuck the english for voting in the conservatives' which at first i clicked the like button, then when i thought about it, i thought No, i will delete that on my page - thats not really what i feel.  I do feel they dont have much of a mandate in Scotland, but i dont hate the english for voting they way they voted - thats ridiculous.

We in Scotland just need to sort ourselves out and work out what we are doing.  anyone reading this - check out facebook and the page 'the tories have no mandate in scotland' (i think its called), you can click on it too.
unfortunately the argument will be that this was a UK general election in which case i suppose it has to be legal even tho there is only one tory MP in Scotland.. i still think its worth having some sort of voice or say in the matter tho, even if only through facebook.

I have a suspicion some of my relatives might be pleased to have the conservatives in, and hopeful that scotland's allowance from london will be stopped.  It might be, i have no idea.  Its just that they dont seem to realise it is partly for our oil London just walked in and grabbed, and partly (i think, may be mistaken here) for the far flung and poorly connected communities in the land.

so here i am now in England, at my bro's house. its great to see them all, but it was strange at Peterborough station where i had to change.  I was quite shocked at the state of the station for some reason i had thought Peterborough to be quite a big place, and fairly well to do - brother pointed out that they are, outside the town.
England does feel so different to Scotland, to me anyway. maybe its because of old memories and connections. 

An interesting thing on radio 4 which Michael Portillo is doing about democracy, its origins etc.. listened to the first one, will have to find the next on iplayer.