What we did on our Holidays

Right, settle down and look at my holiday album.  I have over 500 fascinating photos and you are going to study each one and listen to a story about it.  Ha ha ha!  Only joking. I tried that on my dad and look what happened.

Dad ZZZ.jpg

Look, I have film footage of a mountain!

Obviously if I did that I would bore you to death and you’d banish me from your blogging community until the end of time. So I’ve devised a fun method of boring… I mean, sharing my holiday memories with you.  Can you guess what I’ve done?

CARTOONS, YEAH!

Don’t worry, I haven’t drawn 500 odd cartoons of mountains and eagles and otters and shit. I have carefully selected the highlights of the holiday, or, if I’m honest, the bits I drew cartoons of while I was there until I got cheesed off with it and threw my sketch pad over my shoulder and settled down with the whisky on a ferry.

Slainte Mhath! (That’s Gaelic for bottoms up.)

Now then.

NORTHUMBRIA

Scotland is a long way and my partner is into astronomy so we had the brainwave to stop for two nights halfway, in Northumbria, to visit the Dark Sky Observatory and have a bit of a look around.

Astronomy.jpg

There is very low light pollution in this area so it is a perfect spot for stargazing. Unfortunately, it was cloudy when we were there so the Dark Sky was just dark, with no stars.  I was going to draw what we saw but it just looked like this.

 

 

 

 

 

Dark, isn’t it?

The journey north was relatively uneventful.

Journey to Northumbria.jpg

I’m not one to perpetuate stereotyping but the constant blue sky and sunshine did honestly turn to rain the moment we passed the sign welcoming us to the north. Truly. Luckily it was a brief shower and it clearly only did it to give me a laugh and the idea for a cartoon.

We didn’t get away very early and it grew steadily dark and late as we progressed towards our destination.  So much so that we very nearly missed seeing a prominent landmark in the twilight.

North.jpg

We were staying in a bunkhouse apartment out in the sticks and we phoned to let them know our arrival would be around midnight and asked if they could leave us the key somewhere.  The lovely gent running it promised to wait there for us and show us around before he went home. What a star! (The only one we saw…)

Midnight.jpg

The road became a sort of rollercoaster in the darkness as midnight approached.

Hills.jpg

Roads

We had no idea what was outside the car. In daylight it turned out to be wall-to-wall sheep. The road went on and on and on and on… A bit like this blog post.

Finally, we arrived and let the lovely man go home to his bed. He promised to cook us breakfast the next morning, even though he looked wrecked.

We pulled the dogs out from under all the luggage in the back of the car and unfolded their lanky long lurcher legs (don’t call the RSPCA – our dogs actually get to spreadeagle themselves luxuriously over two thirds of the car while we are scrunched in the front seats with our faces crushed against the windscreen and all the bags crammed in my footwell so I have to put my legs on the dashboard).

It’s really really dark in these cartoons so you can’t see what they are saying.  I have thoughtfully added captions below.

Silent dog1.jpg

Finally

Silent dog2

AAAhhh

One of the dogs helpfully had a sneaky poo in the dark on the campsite so we had to try and find it and pick it up. When I say it was dark, I mean it was pitch black dark. You couldn’t see ANYTHING, let alone a dark dog poo on a dark field in the dark. This is the Dark Sky Observatory on a cloudy night; darker than a black cat in a coalshed at midnight on the winter solstice. Have you noticed how the word ‘dark’ is starting to seem like a made-up word now? Or is that just me?

ANYWAY!

Silent dog3.jpg

smell it

And then the other dog started STARING at SOMETHING, in the DARK.

Silent dog4.jpg

Freaked.jpg

This is it, I thought, waiting for the Beast of The Dark Sky Park to come and get me, this is the end. Funny, I always thought I’d die choking on a bit of apple or laughing too hard at some comedy…

Anyway, it turned out to be a bin.  Gormless dog.

I’ve got more photos… don’t be a stranger…!

Come back!!! … please…?

(call me)

 

Jifosophy 14

Dreamy questions this week from Cee.

What did I come in here for

What’s your strongest sense?

Sight.  But only when I actively look at something.  I can be looking for my favourite mug and it’s right in front of me.  I think my colour vision is particularly intense, hence my violent response to orange.

Orange.jpg

Which of Snow White’s 7 dwarfs describes you best? (Doc, Happy, Bashful, Sleepy, Sneezy, Grumpy, Dopey)

Dopey? Though I did just sneeze…

If you could be one age for the rest of your life, what age would that be?

I enjoyed being 27, so I’ll go with that.

List of Jobs You Think You Might Enjoy: Even if you aren’t thinking about a career change, it can be fun to think of other jobs you might enjoy.  [Remember:  This is SYW where even your dreams can become reality.]

I would love to be an art teacher/therapist working with children.

I had a brief period as a holistic therapist and that was wonderful.

Yoga teacher

Dog trainer

Psychiatrist

Yoga dog.jpg

Namaste!

041514-sywbanner

Jifosophy 5

 

Mosh Spiders.jpgSpider dance.jpg

Get well soon Cee and thanks for this week’s questions from Ribbonrx.com

What’s something you like to do the old-fashioned way?

Talking.  I love old-fashioned expressions like ‘Frock’ and ‘Fancy goods’ and ‘Carrying on’. As in, “He’s been carrying on with that sort from number 37, you know.  Bought her a new frock last week and various other fancy goods.'” Due to the prevalence of smartphones and I-pads I think there’s far too much grunting goes on in place of conversation these days.  Language is our most amazing skill and we need to give it some love.

What’s your favorite genre of book or movie?

I like a nice tangledy psychological drama with plenty to make me think. Skeletons in the closet, black humour and a jolly good twist at the end.  Not much to ask is it?  With a movie, I like to sit there working out the plot while my partner gets closer and closer to the edge of the sofa, eyes and mouth growing wider and the dog getting balder and flatter under the stressed out hand stroking him ever more firmly into the cushions as the climax approaches…  Yes, I said ‘climax’.

Stroke.jpg

How often do you people watch?

Not as often as I blinking should!  I’m in my own little world, me.  I’m always dead proud of myself if I notice an event or incident taking place within my vicinity.  “Ooh, humans!” I say, vaguely aware of movement and flashing blue lights somewhere to my left.  Meanwhile, my brain’s gone off on a tangent about early man developing the concept of edgy cave art.

Brian's Blood.jpg

What have you only recently formed an opinion about?

Humanity.  It’s not looking good.

Humanity.jpg

041514-sywbanner