Tuesday, February 26, 2013

River Tay Sky February 26th

River Tay Sky February 26th.

Another stunning sunset over the river Tay at Newburgh North Fife yesterday, virtually cloudless in the high pressure, cold nights but sunshine all day long.

Full moon through a hazy sky bearing its silent influence.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Tayview Feb 24th 2013 North Fife

Tayview Feb 24th, soft winter colour skies

4-30pm looking into Perthshire, in the distance snow on the mountains with Perth City out of site just beyond the middle escarpment.

I really love the soft pinks and greys in this light over Invergowrie on the outskirts of Dundee.

Half an hour later this magical transformation takes place as the setting sunlight  gets level and under the cloud cover. I always find it quite stunning. Quickly changing and very impermanent.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Tayview Sky Newburgh North Fife Feb 23rd 2013

Tayview Sky Newburgh North Fife Feb 23rd 2013. At last the days are drawing out and light is returning. Today at evening time the light had a wonderful quality, ever changing of course, cloudy to the West but less so to the East.

Looking West from Newburgh.

 Looking North  to a shaft of bright sunlight illuminatig the reedbeds surrounding Mugdrum Island.

 A few minutes later the light is even more dramatic.

Looking East to Dundee bathed in a warm glow.

 Almost full Moon

Dundee from BlackEarnside.

River Tay from Fliskmillan. This and the preceeding photographs span about 15 mins, it later gave up incredible scarlet vistas, too late I was having my tea.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Walsall Arboretum Boat House

Walsall Arboretum Boat House, boating, a much loved facility and enjoyed by many, I have more photos somewhere and will post them when found. These were taken 40 years ago.

Gas Street Canal Basin Birmingham

Gas Street Canal Basin Birmingham

Gas street as it was in 1972, in the days of J Price converter of working barges into floating homes. I often wonder where he has floated off too, maybe someone will know.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Dark Angle Shades Moth North Fife

Dark Angle Shades moth found yesterday evening outside on my kitchen window. Freshly emerged this female's wings had not fully inflated. The outside temperature was 4c. I am surprised to see her at this time of the year, she readily drank guava juice from soaked tissue paper and in the morning on placing outside, quivered a short while and took off. Completely out of season and unlikely to find a mate., most likely to be eaten by a hungry bird. Such is life.

West Midlands Transport 1970s

These photographs taken at Wellhead Lane Depot in the early 70s mark the transition from the Daimler CVG6, Crossley H30/25R era to the less sturdy Leyland buses which rattled and vibrated and to my memory frequently broke down.

Advertising was introduced at this time giving us the subliminal come on to buy and do all sorts of things, tiny compared to now.

rear engined Leyland lurking on the far left. Notice how clean the buses are even the garage floor only slightly marked with oil leaks from engines and differentials.

At least not all buses were adulterated with adverts. How times have changed. The interior seating fabrics were really well colour coordinated and soft to the touch.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Monday, February 18, 2013

Tayviews North Fife 16th - 18th February 2013

At last the sun is beginning to shine on and off on the 16th February.

A short while later as the sun sinks lower,

17th February, another soft sunset, notice the water soaked fields still containing unlifted potatoes from last year. It's impossible for heavy farm machinery to work the ground. Unless there's a prolonged dry spell this years sowing will be handicapped too.

18th February, sunny all day as a ridge of high pressure takes over, frost overnight and a haze in the air.

Low water exposing the many sand banks around Mugdrum Island just off Newburgh.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Not On the Label What Really Goes into the Food on Your Plate

This prescient book first published in May 2004 says it all, a great pity that more notice was not taken at the time.

Not On the Label
What Really Goes into the Food on Your Plate


Guild of Food Writers Jeremy Round Award : Winner 2005


We no longer trust what we eat. We lurch instead from food scare to food scare while farming is in crisis around the world. A handful of retailers and food manufacturers exert unprecedented control over what we eat and where we buy it. We have come to depend on processed food that is routinely adulterated.

In a series of undercover investigations tracking some of the most popular foods we eat at home, Felicity Lawrence travels from farms and factories to packhouses and lorry depots across the world. She discovers why beef waste ends up in chicken, why a third of apples are thrown away, why all wines taste the same. She meets the hidden armies of migrant workers exploited throughout Britain on whom our supermarkets depend. And she shows how obesity, blighted town centres, motorways clogged with juggernauts, environmentally ravaged fields in Europe and starving smallholders in Africa are all intricately related aspects of our newly globalized, industrialized system of 21st-century food production.

RRP: £9.99
Price: £7.49 & this item Delivered FREE in the UK with Super Saver Delivery. See details and conditions
You Save: £2.50 (25%)

Friday, February 15, 2013

Horse Meat North Fife

Horse Meat. Very much in the news of late, millions of us have been eating it without complaint except it was masquerading as beef. A massive fraud and deception. Therein lies the cultural furore. I would hazard a guess that if became openly available and certified to the same standards as other meats many of us would buy it and why not.

Raw, sliced horse meat, known as "Basashi" as served in Japan.

Horse meat is the culinary name for meat cut from a horse. It is a major meat in only a few countries, notably in Central Asia, but it forms a significant part of the culinary traditions of many others, from Europe to South America to Asia. The top eight countries consume about 4.7 million horses a year. For the majority of mankind's early existence, wild horses were hunted as a source of protein. It is slightly sweet, tender and low in fat.

However, because of the role horses have played as companions and as workers, and concerns about the ethics of the horse slaughter process, it is a taboo food in some cultures. These historical associations, as well as ritual and religion, led to the development of the aversion to the consumption of horse meat. The horse is now given pet status by many in some parts of the Western world, particularly in the U.S.A., United Kingdom and Ireland, which further solidifies the taboo on eating its meat.

The Folk Art of Japanese Country Cooking: A Traditional Diet for Today's World

Japanese peoples are renowned for their longevity, this has much to do with their traditional diet and cooking methods.

Those who love Japanese food know there is more to it than sukiyaki, tempura, and sushi. A variety of miso-based soups, one-pot cooking (nabemono), and vegetable side dishes with sweet vinegar dressing (sunomono) are just a few of the traditional dishes that are attracting many interested in Asian cooking. Homma presents an intriguing mixture of Japanese country cooking, folk tradition, and memories of growing up in Japan. Cooking methods include techniques for chopping vegetables, making udon and soba noodles, making tofu and using various tofu products, and making rich soup stocks. This is a book to use and treasure for its traditional Japanese cooking methods.

A reviewer stated,
 First, this is not your typical cookbook. You will probably first notice that there are no big flashy pictures of perfect looking food. Next you will see that you have to read about 100pages to get to the recipes. But it is well worth it.

The first half of the book deals with the history and ingreadiants of Japanese country cooking. The second half has all the recipes. For some of the ingredients you will probably have to try an Asian market, but over all most of the recipes are pretty simple, healthy, and taste great. A lot of these dishes are also not the type of food that you will find at the typical Japanese restaurant, they are what you will probably encounter if you are lucky enough to be invited to someone's house for dinner in Japan.

Also nice is that many simple things such as how to cook rice in a pot or cut up a whole fish are covered for less expert cooks.

Author Biography:
Gaku Homma, founder and chief instructor of Nippon Kan Aikido and Cultural Center in Denver, Colorado, is owner and head chef of Denver's highly acclaimed Domo restaurant. His experiences as Aikido instructor combined with his talents as a chef led to the creation of The Folk Art of Japanese Country Cooking: A Traditional Diet for Today's World.
So if you like more Asian food or just want to try something different I really recommend this book.

RRP: £22.50
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Take a look and buy here. The Folk Art of Japanese Country Cooking: A Traditional Diet for Today's World

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Snow Flisk North Fife 2013

Snow again here at Flisk North Fife, not much but enough to prevent travel, fortunately it rained later, a slushy drive to Newburgh and all was well.
 Meanwhile the ducks were left to forage, gleaning scraps of grass in the snow though I do feed them grain. They have a compulsion to bill their way into the ground creating muddy holes in which was once a level lawn. Giving free range returns us with wonderful rich tasting eggs, I prefer mine poached. An ever changing view of Newburgh and the River Tay.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Perfect Diet North Fife

Feeling the need to loose weight, get in trim for the rush of Spring, mmmm ? The Hypnotic Gastric Band gives rise to the perfect diet. Imagine, eat anything you like, as much as you like. DO YOU WANT TO LOSE WEIGHT? HAVE YOU TRIED DIETS AND FAILED? DO YOU WANT A COMPLETELY NEW APPROACH? A Gastric Band is a radical, surgical operation that reduces the available space in the stomach. Paul McKenna's Hypnotic Gastric Band is a psychological procedure that can help to convince the unconscious mind that a gastric band has been fitted, so the body behaves exactly as if it were physically present. HOW DOES IT WORK? Along with the book, the system contains a hypnosis CD and an instructional DVD to provide complete support for physical and psychological change whilst you lose weight. There's no physical surgery, no scarring and no forbidden foods. Just follow all the instructions and let Paul help you lose weight. Hypnosis is a very powerful tool, just by committing to the CD you are already half way there. Each time you listen, the desired effect will occur. OK, lets go for it. Now The Hypnotic Gastric Band .

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

St Valentine's Day North Fife 2013

Valentine Rose X Saint Valentine's Day, commonly known as Valentine's Day, or the Feast of Saint Valentine, is observed on February 14 each year. It is celebrated in many countries around the world, although it remains a working day in most of them. St. Valentine's Day began as a liturgical celebration of one or more early Christian saints named Valentinus. The most popular martyrology associated with Saint Valentine was that he was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry and for ministering to Christians, who were persecuted under the Roman Empire; during his imprisonment, he is said to have healed the daughter of his jailer Asterius. Legend states that before his execution he wrote "from your Valentine" as a farewell to her. Today, Saint Valentine's Day is an official feast day in the Anglican Communion, as well as in the Lutheran Church. The Eastern Orthodox Church also celebrates Saint Valentine's Day, albeit on July 6th and July 30th, the former date in honor of the Roman presbyter Saint Valentine, and the latter date in honour of Hieromartyr Valentine, the Bishop of Interamna (modern Terni). The day was first associated with romantic love in the circle of Geoffrey Chaucer in the High Middle Ages, now he a had a tale to tell, when the tradition of courtly love flourished. By the 15th century, it had evolved into an occasion in which lovers expressed their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards (known as "valentines"). Valentine's Day symbols that are used today include the heart-shaped outline, doves, and the figure of the winged Cupid. Since the 19th century, handwritten valentines have given way to mass-produced greeting cards. Now we are on the subject of romantic love, this book explains the positive benefits of the experience.
Summary of Love 2.0 We all know love matters, but in this ground breaking book positive emotions expert Barbara Fredrickson shows us how much. Even more than happiness and optimism, love holds the key to improving our mental and physical health as well as lengthening our lives. Using research from her own lab, Fredrickson redefines love not as a stable behemoth, but as micro-moments of connection between people—even strangers. She demonstrates that our capacity for experiencing love can be measured and strengthened in ways that improve our health and longevity. Finally, she introduces us to informal and formal practices to unlock love in our lives, generate compassion, and even self-soothe. Rare in its scope and ambitious in its message, Love 2.0 will reinvent how you look at and experience our most powerful emotion. Buy now to truly understand why love feels so good. Love 2.0: How Our Supreme Emotion Affects Everything We Feel, Think, Do, and Become
Kiss me, I could be your Valentine Prince. XXX

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Losar 2013 Female Water Serpent

Wishing you a very happy, auspicious, healthy, all accomplishing and prosperous New Year.
Calligraphy by Tashi Mannox representing the year of Female water Serpent. Losar, Tibetan New Year.
A New Year card produced by Samye-Ling. The Artist is Lama Thubten Kunsal from a monastery in Derge Eastern Tibet, Copyright Samye-Ling Scotland. On a secular level these qualities are ascribed for this year of the the snake. Female Water Snake. Year of Transformation by Mary Shurtleff Year of Transformation Not everything you see is what you see it as. It is only how you see it at the moment. Milton Erickson 'Nothing is as it seems' could possibly be a theme for the year of the Female Water Snake—2013, as she mesmerizes and hypnotizes the masses into believing that which is not really there. As she creates illusions of grandeur, leaving questions of what is real and what is not, it becomes difficult to know what is illusion and what is reality. But then on the other hand---what is the difference between illusion and reality? Doesn't the illusion become our reality? This year could get very tricky!! The word illusion is an erroneous perception of reality, concept, or belief. The word reality means a state of being actual or true, the totality of all things possessing actuality, existence, or essence. Simply saying something is a reality doesn’t make it so. Sometimes the reality of a situation is only an illusion of our perception at the time of the incident occurred. We all have different illusions of what reality really is. Normal is an illusion. What is normal for the spider is chaos for the fly" - Morticia Addams. This year the Female Water Snake will bring you illusions of what your future can be. As she winds and spins herself higher and higher transforming the world and mesmerizing the belief systems of many, we will see a new consciousness emerge. http://www.enlighteningtimes.co.uk/2012/12/female-water-snake-year-of.html The Snake feels and senses its way through life and represents spiritual rebirth, elusiveness and exploration of life's mysteries. In the Chinese astrological system, the large 60 year cycles (which contain the smaller 12 year cycles) are profoundly important. Although each animal sign repeats every 12 years, the specific combination of animal and element occur only once every 60 years. Not since 1953 have we had the alignment of Water (stem) & Snake (branch) year. The ending or culminating months of deep and covert Water Snake years is the winter, the period of dormancy and quiet gestation. The Water Snake rules ponds and stagnant pools, peat and bamboo. Water of the marshes Water of winter nights, calm and deep water to be feared and respected. Still water sheltering underwater secrets asleep in its depths; sinking and muddy. Profit from this year to restore your energies and regain your inner balance. Avoid overwork or any excesses which will follow with depression. Maintain your equilibrium and do not waste your energy. Don't go too far too quickly. This years Water element will be socially beneficial, calming and conducive to meditation and interpersonal contact. The nature of the deeply feeling Snake year is "gradual and gathered strength," bringing a more moderate than radical year. During Snake years, our concerns turn toward inner-growth, spirituality and discovering the reasons behind things. Sensual Snakes are sensitive to changes in weather, dislike the cold, and accordingly during Snake years warmer climates are preferred. A creative, artistic year, filled with pleasure, enlightenment and beauty. Music, dance, art galleries and museums thrive. 2013 brings a slower paced, quiet, behind-the-scenes lifestyle. A deep-thinking, philosophical year, where intuition and all things middle-of-the-road reign supreme. Beware the green eyes of jealousy in 2013, as Snakes are also quite possessive of that which they call their own. Carnal passions and deliciously scandalous romances abound. Some of the most physically beautiful women and powerful men were born under this sign. Sexuality is a Snake speciality. Looks like a sexy year then, mmmmmmm..... Enjoy

The River Tay February 6th 2013

The River Tay at Newburgh February 6th, some sunlight today yielding different qualities of light. Next is a view to the East, bright sunshine over the Carse of Gowrie, Dundee and the Sidlaw Hills.
A few hours later the sky takes on a different hue, the following are in sequence over a period of half an hour.
Getting cold, it was time for tea.