March 4th 2017

Here we are again, into official spring. Certainly the birds are getting their songs polished off for the great territory marking and female attracting.It is fun to spot where the thrush is sitting in the mornings when walking Erin to school.

Back in September I got a fitbit.  After having finally met a physio who found the source of the pain in my right leg I had begun the old fashioned method of getting fitter again, namely walking. I had a pseudo fitbit which was horribly  unreliable as well as simply falling off my wrist,  hence the expensive “original.”I started off with a ten thousand steps a day target which was done quite comfortably before I stepped it up to twelve thousand, not so easily achieved.  I began to see my running legs reappearing and was delighted. When the really dark evenings came in I had to find routes which were well enough lit to go out in the evening.  Two return walks to school and one to Audrey’s and back added up but weren’t exactly the general idea. However I was to be seen striding out along the pavements in Abronhill at all hours. As the weather became a little more inclement, I cut my steps back to ten thousand and have apparently walked the length of Italy plus some, now. The nights are growing lighter therefore the step count will have to go up again. My best days were one in autumn and one a couple of weeks ago when both days I did twenty one thousand steps. As a small aside, I even tried to run yesterday and jogged for a few hundred yards. NB still standing but a long way short of the 10k standard.

Throughout the winter the art groups carried on until the Friday one became a craft group, which wasn’t my ‘thing.’ I didn’t return to that after Christmas but still went to the Thursday one. We heard of another class coming to the Muirfield Centre on the Wednesday evening. Elizabeth and I turned up to ask to join and we were met with some hesitation but we were allowed to join. Elizabeth had stopped the Thursday  group but I had paid up to the end of February so I have now left it. The Wednesday group is so different. Tom McDonald is an artist. (Artist in residence at the Port Gallery at Auchenstarry.) and he is so helpful. he is helping (teaching) Elizabeth and me how to work with acrylics Enjoying it very much. The ‘crack’ is good too.

I have also joined a knit and natter group at the Central library.Getting knitting back on the go again before my fingers sieze up completely.  Biggish group, again a lot of laughter.

Latest catastrophe, nearly, was yesterday Came home from the knitting group, went into the hidden depths of my handbag for the key, no keys. My wee hessian bag containing said keys not there. Not Possible! Didn’t panic….yet. Searched the house. No keys. Phoned library. No keys.  Visited the bank, Tesco, Lidl and Home Bargains. No keys. Last resort, the Police Office. No keys. Next step.Last time I had used my door key was on Monday when we’d been at B&Q.  Blue bin. No keys. Kitchen bin. Rubber gloves and another plastic bag. Start digging. just under bags the fabric drawers for the new units were, lay my little hessian bag with my keys! Huge sight of relief. That is the second time in my life I have had to dig in a bin for my keys. Last time was many years ago at Hamilton College when a process of elimination brought the conclusion that the last time I had my car keys was when I went to make a cup of coffee when I arrived at school on a cold winter morning-beside the bin. That day the keys were right at the bottom of a very tall bin under the detritus of the day, remnants of packed lunches tea bags even some left over bits of school meals for those brave enough to eat them.

Where should I go next? Ah, New Year’s morning.We went round to the Eriksen’s  to bring in the New Year. Home around 2.30  Into bed. 5.20 phone rang. Audrey. They had been at a friends for the celebrations. Craig had decided to go home, on foot, had been drinking. Audrey in a state, thought he was going to walk on the motorway.No, he had gone via the canal. Derek, who had not been drinking got up and went to pick her up and get her home. Not a lot later, Derek back in bed, the phone rang again. Mum, I’m waiting for an ambulance, I think I’ve broken my finger. How? Who knows. Walked down to their house. Craig sound asleep in bed, Audrey with strangely positioned third finger of right hand. Medics arrived, decided the finger needed specialist help. Off I go with daughter dear to A&E. The waiting room was empty. 6.30 on New Year’s morning. Blimey. Three stretcher cases came in so that department was busy. Waited quite a long time but eventually Auds was seen, sent to X-ray then back to waiting area where a couple more patients had appeared. It seemed just a bit long before she was seen again, when the nurse relocated the dislocated joint after anaesthetising the finger. There was also a fracture at the joint and tendons were torn. Back for another X-ray. Finger strapped up and off we went, at 10.30. Derek had been phoned to come for us. He also had to to their friend’s house to pick up Kyle and Erin in the afternoon. A day to forget, really.

Update: eight weeks on, the healing has eventually taken place. Now physio  to get the finger straight and keep it straight is the next step.

Next weekend is Craig’s birthday. To celebrate, Audrey has Thursday and Friday off while Craig has Monday. I have taken the opportunity to nip up to Inverness to see my friend Christine. I can get there and back for a whole 50p. I’ve booked on Citylink Gold which costs 50p and I have my bus pass. Looking forward to that. I am going up on Thursday afternoon and coming back Saturday evening. Meanwhile Derek is going to the Mitchell Library on Thursday evening to hear Rev Richard Coles who is on a book tour, then having Kyle and Erin on Friday night sleepover. Originally I was coming down earlier on Saturday to babysit  but Audrey had made a mistake, the gig they are going to is not Saturday but Friday. Note to self: sister’s birthday Saturday.

Apart from my walks which I’m enjoying, that’s it. I’ve seen the Autumn fade into Winter and now coming back into Spring. The walks I can do only in daytime are in the Cumbernauld Glen. From here I walk to the primary school, past it to the railway bridge. From there it is a short but steep climb along the path until a drop down into the bottom of the glen, along beneath another railway bridge and a pleasant walk back up until the path is above the railway again. Following that it is a steady slog back up through the houses to home. If I am early enough I go the reverse of that walk to collect Erin from school. That drop down into the glen is tough on the way back up, helped a little by a sort of double s-bed with a non slip surface. There are bulbs popping up in abundance now. I saw a bunch of almost open daffodils and a lovely big patch of inaccessible snow drops. Lots of robins chaffinches and wood pigeons to be heard. Oh and I saw a wren the other day. One day I walked to B&Q in the freezing fog. I was astonished to see what looked like pretty white lace like flowers on old pieces of wood. Discovered they are caused by the liquid (water) inside the wood freezing and expanding. I went all the way there and back via the glen,a lovely walk.

This is 12.29 on a cold Saturday. I am going for some food then perhaps I’ll have a wee paint with my watercolours before making tea. Over and out.