Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Home Sweet Home II

So, where was I before I rudely interrupted my musings with news of the impending destruction of the village pillagers? (HUZZAH!)  Oh yes...

 home - behind the delphiniums

Well, the garden was still looking in fine fettle when I was home.  My Dad was particularly pleased with the dahlia show and rightly so, they were beautiful:

I'd missed the sweet-peas, of course, which are always spectacular, and also the livingstone daisies and all the lovely Summer border flowers, but witnessed the addition of the Winter pansies just before I left, which are ever so pretty.   The tomatoes in the greenhouse are mostly past now, and the cucumbers and peppers are long gone, but there were 5 rather massive marrows there awaiting a time when my Mother will turn them into marrow and ginger jam.  NOM.

Well, in addition to pretending to be a tourist and taking all sorts of arty-farty shots of the ancient buildings, I also indulged in a spot of nostalgic piccie-taking of my old school...  Although I use that word advisedly...  I know the word nostalgia means a longing for the past, and invokes feelings of warmth, of golden, happy times and I shouldn't really use that word in any sentence pertaining to my school years (as I have very mixed memories of secondary school... well, to be honest, I have mostly bad memories of secondary school) but I could never complain about the aesthetic beauty of the senior building and its wonderful, if very draughty, quadrangle... Sadly I couldn't take pictures of the quad, as the school was closed for the October holidays, but, although the building is only 180 years old or so, I remember the quad appearing very old indeed.  I guess that's what happens when you combine the local sand-stone used for building most of the old structures in the town, and the sharp, salty sea air...

madras college - senior building

I do, however, remember enjoying lunch-times when I would stay in the music house and practise the piano, which is where the real nostalgia comes in...  I learnt my first Chopin nocturne on the piano of the room above the bowed windows, on the first floor...

the music house in all its autumnal glory

The buildings of St Mary's College, part of the university, was also a must on the 'got to photo' list.  St Mary's College is the home of the teaching of Divinity and was founded in 1539 and is still housed in its fine sixteenth-century buildings, and I have to say, they are beautiful!

Do you see the thorn tree to the left of the bottom picture?  Legend has it that it was planted by Mary Queen of Scots during one of her visits to the town...  Okay, okay - a 500+ year-old tree?  Well, the chances are that if it's not the original tree, it's certainly a descendant, so it's still rather on the WOW side!

Another ancient structure to be found is the West Port which was originally built in 1589 and is, I think, the last remaining civic gate still in existence in Scotland.

west port

I must have walked through the port a thousand times, but I have to admit that I've never really looked closely at it before (you know - that thing about familiarity breeding... blindness), but have camera, as they say, take close-ups...

king david and his lance... don't ask - i have no idea!

To finish with, I'll show you the LYS - it's situated in one of the wee closes (pronounced with a sibilant s and not a z, meaning a narrow alley to a courtyard) opposite the school. The building is itself a great example of the typical mediaeval house that was found in the area, with the dwelling spaces on the upper floors and the ground floor used for housing livestock. Inside it's all wooden beams, creaky floorboards, rough walls and yummy yarn!  I can think of worse places to drool over wool!

Oh, and yes, I did take photos on different days... although anyone visiting Scotland will avow, it is possible to have sun, rain, fog and snow within a few hours of each other.  And that's just in Summer!  Heh!


Anonymous Monday, 3 November 2008 at 19:08:00 GMT  

Gorgeous! I love all of those flowers!
Thanks for the comments on my recent blog posts. It's nice to know we've got some good juju coming from across the pond. I can't wait for it to be over. I need to know if Mike and I should pack for Canada or not!

Mair Bloag Weejits

Footerin' Aboot

Footerin' Aboot
Heh! I'm so funny!

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