I had a very short working week last week; in on Monday and Friday and out on strike Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.  I had mixed emotions about it – I had rejected the initial pay offer but did not vote for strike action – but felt I had to support those who did.  Various figures have been bandied around in the media about what the pay offer actually was with some figures being more believable than others but what could not be disputed was Cosla’s own cleverly presented figures. A generous £2000 was proposed which on the face of it seems more than acceptable howeverRead More →

As Nadine Dorries resigned from the Government, her resignation letter read like the synopsis of the book that she is shortly to publish.  It was a very public letter although I have heard others describe it as personal but to me, it was written for the public and not for Mr Sunak’s benefit.  From the cringeworthy claim of declining his phone call on his first morning of taking office it continued to throw shade as the kids would say, continually alluding to the book and how all would be revealed.  The book appears to be a cross between Blair’s memoirs and Harry Potter with itsRead More →

Wick Is built around the mouth of Wick Bay, an inlet in the coastline in the far north of Scotland.  At the central point of this bay is the harbour and from there the town rises along both cliff tops leading out to neighbouring villages north and south of the town.  Originally Wick was a small village on the north side of the bay but the  creation of a new harbour on the south side in the 19th century led to the beginnings of Pulteneytown – with all its various spellings – and the two merged together and turned Wick into one of the largestRead More →

Like almost everybody else, I was shocked when I heard the news that Nicola Sturgeon was standing down as First Minister.  I had been late to the information as I was working and when I switched on my phone later in the day, I was presented with a series of incredulous texts from my children before eventually working out what had happened.  Over the remainder of the day as the news filtered through to people, there seemed to be a genuine sense of shock at the news even from people who made no secret of their dislike and distrust of the SNP and the onlyRead More →

I’ve recently spent a few days down at Raigmore Hospital while my son was in for an operation.  During a 5 day stay I was in awe of the dedication and care from the staff no matter how busy they were.  Everybody had time for a blether with the patients and visitors and the calm and patient demeanour of the staff was very evident. With no set visiting hours, you were generally welcome anytime and this helped greatly with the flow of people in the wards and made for an easier visiting experience. Raigmore is the main hospital for the whole of the Highlands andRead More →

The youngest had texted me and told me she had something really funny to show me when I got home from work.  As soon as I saw it, I recognised the writing and knew exactly what it was.  She had been intrigued to find a hand written unstamped letter but puzzled why it had come with the post.  As it was addressed to “Dear neighbour” she had theorised that she was quite within her rights to open it and found a lovely Christmas card and a handwritten letter.  Turning it over she found that it was from the Liberal Democrats and the letter from ourRead More →

An article appeared in the local press recently about the council mooting an idea for reducing the size of the general waste bins for households by almost half.  Currently larger households and those with certain medical needs have an increased bin capacity and smaller households have a smaller one; this proposal would see all households reduce to the size of the small households.  The pros were that it would encourage householders to increase their recycling rate and be more careful with what they recycle as they would not be able to just chuck it in the bin like it is currently presumed they do.  TheRead More →

Unsurprisingly, Rishi Sunak is now Prime Minister and First Lord of the Treasury and Minister for the Union.  There was no way that Penny Mordaunt was going to be allowed to follow in Liz Truss” shoes and, even though there have been far more men managing to destroy what they have been in charge of, Liz Truss was the architect of her own downfall playing to the stereotype of a weak willed female incapable of making a decision and the damage has been done for many years now.  Quite how quickly her premiership came to an end was shocking however and there should be manyRead More →

I had been in London at the weekend and took the train to the airport on the way home as usual.  It was quiet when we boarded and found a seat easily behind an elderly well-to-do couple sitting diagonally on a 4 seater.  I soon noticed that the man had edged our suitcase forward and was using it as a convenient armrest whilst reading the paper and wasn’t too happy when the bairn retrieved it suddenly.  As the train began to fill, their empty seats remained free of people  but laden with bags until a young woman got on with a baby and proceeded toRead More →

We have been glued to the TV this week watching the swimming at the Commonwealth Games and feeling so proud of how they have all done.  Swimming is probably one of the few sports where there is not the same sporting rivalry between the nations as it is such an individual sport.  I was a swimmer as is one of my children so I understand only too well the hours of training and discipline that the athletes have put in and to see all the swimmers not only qualifying for the events but reaching the finals is incredible.  Hearing the roar of Flower of ScotlandRead More →