Sunday 30 November 2008

Into the Blackness

The Forth was as flat calm as I've seen it on Saturday, like a massive roll of clingfilm pulled taut from Blackness to Limekilns. It was eventually disturbed by smooth undulations eminating from the passage of a red container ship sliding up-river. This we saw from the battlements and jetty of Blackness Castle on a glorious crisp day. I was exploiting the free Historic Scotland weekend and had taken the boys out to make the most of the fresh air. Rowan led the way most of the time, scrambling over the natural rock in the courtyard and determinedly climbing stairs. He went daft at the sight of the "Cranky cranes" on the north side of the Forth. Sean and Finn explored too, negotiating spiral staircases, shuddering at the latrine with its chute direct to the rocky shore below and generally being very loud, their excited calls to each other echoing around the massive fortress walls. (Sean then went in the huff because we weren't going to Edinburgh Castle. He was there with the school a few weeks ago and was miffed because he had less than the £3 required to buy something he wanted in the shop. He was been pestering us to go back ever since.)

We went on to Ratho soft play afterwards which has just the right balance of activities for all three to enjoy themselves. They especially love it when I chase them about although it leaves me fairly short of breath these days. Rowan was in fine form as we walked up the approach from the car park, telling a lady, "Hi! I'm Rowan. Roany-Bo." Completely unprompted.

Today we drove through to Glasgow to see the Lasts. As on our previous visit we came away envious of the room they have in their big house. We always seem to be tripping over each other in ours. Rowan ruled the roost, "come on Morvie!", chasing the cat and generally stomping about in his kilt having a great time. Sean and Finn enjoyed playing games too with Morven and Lynn and were reluctant to go. The drive to and from Glasgow along the M8 was, for once, quite spectacular, with frost-limned trees sparkling in the sunlight on the way there and the countryside slipping into a snow-dusted lilac-green gloaming on the way home.

Finn and Rowan drew many admiring glances on Friday as they made their way to nursery and pre-school in their kilts for St. Andrews Day. Finn had a Highland Games sports day in the school hall, with tug of war (he lost), tossing the caber (he tossed it backwards over his shoulder) and throwing the turnip (ditto). Sean needs to get a new kilt. He was feeling left out and always did enjoy a twirl!

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