The train journey between Wick and Inverness is approximately 4 1/2 hours long. Taking the same length of time to travel between Edinburgh and London, the journey between the towns in the Far North and their nearest city is double what it would take you by road. Rather than following the A9 road down the coast, the train makes several detours inland and acts as a lifeline travel service for residents in the communities that were left isolated with the building of the Dornoch Bridge at the start of the 1990s, at that time the longest bridge in Europe, and for those in north westRead More →

I was a 7 year old revolutionary when I learned my first few French phrases; ca va? je m’appelle; j’habite; je suis. Instantly hooked by the fantooshness, there commenced a lifelong fascination of the foreign and exotic. In P5 at Crieff Primary School I’d a wee notebook of French vocabulary and I recognised then the excitement and interest of strange tongues, different cultures, varied ways and customs entirely at odds with those of Presbyterian Scots. We left our Crieff caravan for a cottage in the Hillfoots of Clackmannanshire; our destination must have been preordained and written in the stars for the wallpaper in my bedroomRead More →

“And still they gazed and still the wonder grewThat these big heids just hadnae got a clue”. One line from Oliver Goldsmith’s  poem above has always seemed to me to apply to people with pretensions.  While Goldsmith wrote “That one small head could carry all they knew” is not appropriate, I have substituted my own take on things.  The populace are definitely wondering at the public mess our Westminster government is making.  There seems to be no ending, or any progress, in sight for Brexit. As I write, the SNP have tabled a motion to revoke Article 50, which has received over 6 million signatures,Read More →