Port De Soller Mallorca

Port De Soller Mallorca

Monday, 31 December 2012

A Ramble

Well, 2012 is just about over and we, Ishbel and me, are ending it, the way it began,with 6 year olds Charlie and Holly, of course last year they were 5. There cousin, Mollie, 9, going on 10 is still the petite and most gorgeous creature on the planet, as are all of our grand kids. O.K. I'm biased but we were just talking about this recently, Mollie and me.

It was her, she started it,and it was about three weeks ago, the telly was on in the corner but it was just being used for music, music and books that's the big things in our extended family, sure we like certain TV shows and movies, but music and books are the main attention grabbers with all of us.

So, anyway the music was playing through the big box in the corner and after a while the picture of what is playing defaults to a random slide show of the photographs on my computer and comments were being passed to and fro about the various stages of growth when Mollie turned to me and said, "Grand dad, was I a beautiful baby?" We'll, before I can answer grandma chirps in with a, "of course you were darling, all babies are beautiful"

But Mollie knows her granddad and turns back to me with those enormous and beautiful brown eyes and says, "Well granddad, was I" Now what can one say to a 9 year old girl when asked that question, but answer truthfully.

"Off course you were my darling, you were one of the most beautiful babies ever born, well at least for the first couple of weeks, but then like most babies you turned into an ugly pumpkin, in fact one of the ugliest" Mollies reaction to this was, "Oh grandad!" And her 6 year old sister Shannon sniggered and laughed until I told her that she was even uglier and truth be told she was, she really was.....

Then of course there is Charlie and Holly separated from Shannon by a couple of weeks, they weren't too ugly when they were born and I think the fact that Holly had to be placed in an incubator with all those wires and attachments seemed to make her look so beautiful, but once again they older they got the uglier they became but as with all four of them, somewhere between pre school and school, they seemed to blossom turning into beautiful little people. People with personalities, people with thoughts of their own, able to converse and read and take on things that are happening around them.

Last Sunday, Holly and I were in the car on our own on our way to pick up grandma and as usual the gramophone needle she has been infected with just keeps going and going and she was telling me all sorts of things when suddenly she started telling me about the children who were the same age as her who had been shot in America! What! She is 6 and she wants to talk about Sandy Hook.

I have to admit I was thrown and stuttered, I don't stutter, ever. But this made me miss a beat. So I asked what she knew. She replied that her and Charlie had been in the car with mummy when it came on the news that a bad man had broken into a school like theirs and shot a lot of the children! I asked her how that made her feel. She said it made her "feel sad as Santa would probably already have their presents in his sack and they won't get them and their mummies and daddies will be sad too. Once again I have to admit to being a little thrown by the turn the in the conversation and just as I was preparing to give a profound reply, we had arrived outside the department store grandma works in and Holly says, "Where is she?"

Ah the sweet refrain, in this case, for me at least, of safety. I don't know what I would have said to Holly on that subject as I certainly couldn't repeat what I and others had been saying in the office about the person who did this and the stupidity of the laws in America that allow you to buy a gun with very little background checks, or of a country that has so many guns that even if you are not allowed to buy one, you seemingly can easily obtain one along with super magazines to hold extra bullets to allow you to kill more people or children with one squeeze of the finger, but you can't buy a kinder egg as it has been deemed unsafe and a child may choke on the small toy inside the chocolate egg! Merry Christmas to the NRA then for their continued obstinacy on gun ownership.

We had a visit in September from Julia R Barrett and Oscar from California. Friends we made on Twitter, it was a fleeting visit but highly enjoyable and cemented our friendship or at least Ishbel and I hope it did. Oscar has promised that if we ever manage to get out there to visit that he will be taking me to watch the San Francisco Giants Baseball team in action, their home team. Julia and another Twitter friend Tim, TWDitmer, seem to have a bit of a grudge fight going on over their respective teams and the conversations are funny to observe as they discuss live, the merits of their respective teams as they play bat and ball..... Bless

Twitter has brought so many people into our lives this year, far to many to mention but a few special ones are;

Wee Mickey, Michael Hicks
Julian Stockwin
ChefJohn Malik

and so many more and Marylin Warner who is not on Twitter but always has a kind word, even for an old fart like me, through the medium of her blog which can be found at:  Things I want to tell my Mother

Oh, we went up to Inverness at the beginning of December (I know, still no blog..... There is a draft in here some where) for our niece Sarah's wedding to young Mark Surherland. David and Jill, Sarah's mum and dad gave them and us, a perfect day, weather wasn't great but then it was December, but it did stay dry for the occasion and the reception and party after, just hit the right note. We wish them many happy years together as a married couple to add to the seven they have already been together.

I hit a bit of a hiatus in September too after Julia and Oscar left, nothing to do with them, work related and it can be seen in the number of blog posts I had been writing prior to that, in double figures every month up to then, and then barely in single figures. Still recovering from that but really hoping that 2013, as we do for every year, turns out to be better than the last, for all of us.

Politicians and politics have been getting right up my nose this year but I haven't really even been able to find the where with all to even berate them on my blog. In many respects I think it has been a case of, 'well, you ignore us and do what the hell you are going to do anyway, regardless of what the majority thinks, so I have been ignoring them, which is not good. But even political commentators on twitter are largely as bad as the politicians themselves bad mouthing the other party for things that they do ignoring the fact that the party they support, do the same things, but it's OK when they do, cos we support you. One guy this week was whingeing on about the number of Conservative party donors who were awarded honours in the New Years list, but what about the number of Labour Party donors who get the same honours when Labour is in power; hypocritical dick heads, all of them and they wonder why we are sickened by them all! Even one of my favs in the Labour Party Diane Abbot was having a go this week about biscuits of all things - give it a bloody rest will you ....

Oh, Got a surprise comment on one of my recent blogs from Rob McMeekin, a name from my past who hopefully will be in touch again soon.  One of the Nicest, Most Helpful, Well Mannered Men on the planet and my good fortune to have been acquainted with and I suspect the good fortune of everyone he comes into contact with #TOPMAN

So, anyway this has just been a wee ramble and I hope not too depressing and all it remains is for Ishbel and me to wish you all;

A Happy New Year 


  1. Happy New Year, Tom and Ishbel and all your family. I miss you. You are so precious. I'd love to be there right now.
    Your granddaughter asked the same question we're asking. And yes, baby items are recalled all the time for stupid reasons. But one crazy person has access to semi-automatic weapons and he can kill first graders. Makes me sick whenever I think about it. They'll be lots of talk but nothing will change.
    As for politicians? I've decided my mental health depends upon NOT thinking about them. Almost every politician is worse than useless.

    In any case, I'm hoping 2013 will be better than 2012 has been. Unusually stressful year. Except for visiting there. Love you!

  2. Wonderful post, Tom; between your reaction to your granddaughter and Julia's Millard Fillmore clip, I'm still smiling.
    I love how grandchildren--and all kids, really--can dive right into the important questions and issues that we as the adults can't fully explain.
    Happy New Year to you and your family!

  3. Hey, Marylin - Martin Van Buren! Gotta keep these minor presidents straight! :)

  4. Jules, my sweet, I have a good feeling about 2013 even if the politicians keep trying to grind us all down - things will be better, or at least here's hoping xxx

  5. Yep Marylin, sometimes the kids just leave us speechless, but in the end they are OUR future and we have to try and protect them the best we can, just a pity the politicians and some others seem to lose that concept when they become what they are

    Happy New Year to you my love xxx


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