Sunday, 12 April 2015

A pair of real troopers!


Photo 01 - Stevie's heaviest fish!

A pair of real troopers!

Following on from Friday’s excellent weather yesterday came as a shock. Heavy biting cold winds, sleet, snow and hailstones served to return us to winter albeit temporarily! When most would be happy to get the feet up in front of a roaring fire, the intrepid duo that are Pete Young and Stevie Nimmo who between the them have over 100 years (yes that's 100yrs) of fishing experience on the loch ventured out to pit their wits against the lochs wily Trout!

There was a fair bit of bobbing around on the boat and clearly the expedition could not be classed as a pleasure cruise! Big swell, strong winds and high waves all happily borne in pursuit of Trout! It wasn’t long before the pair encountered some of the resident Trout as they slashed at the pair’s offerings! Eventually Stevie hooked and landed a very fit pounder followed by another which tipped the scales at 12oz.

Pete managed a few more knocks but most unlike him did not manage to land any. However when the loch gets angry even the most committed must give way and seek the security of dry land. A couple of roller coaster rides atop of the angry swell was enough to convince them this days fishing had come to an end!

We have said it often and invariably it turns out to be the case the rougher the weather the better! Just like Mike Wood a few weeks back the duo persevered and their persistence delivered reward! Respect due!

Photo 02 - View from St Mary's Churchyard!
Losing our heritage!

You will remember we reported here an instance of illegal metal detecting in the St Mary’s Churchyard up on the hill behind the graveyard bay on the loch. Well I took a walk up last Saturday to see if there was any evidence of digging and I am pleased to say that apart from a large number of molehills there was no evidence of illegal digging!

What immediately drew my attention however was the dilapidated state of the graveyard with noble structures falling apart soon to become just a pile of stone! The memorial stones still standing have been subject to extreme weathering which given the location is probably unavoidable. Stones however do remain readable with one going back to a burial in 1718 of a shepherd from Chapelhope!   

I am sure there now exists a resin to coat the stone to limit further weathering but it will cost money as will the rebuilding of the Grieve family enclosure which looks about to degenerate into a heap of rubble! Of course the council have not the resources to step in and halt the decay after crushing Con-Dem cuts to their budgets!

Photo 03 - Rapidly degenerating memorial!
This typifies the effects of the cuts, our cultural heritage is being lost and by the time anyone realises it will be too late! It wouldn’t take a huge amount of money to renovate the churchyard but as we are all too aware money is tight! The Hawick archaeological society has captured all the inscriptions of the monuments together with photographic evidence but this is no substitute for preserving the actual graveyard!

A few men and a mini digger could sort the place out in a couple of days with regard to rebuilding and stabilising the structures but the question is who would do and fund this work? This is taking place all over the country as the hapless Con_Dems cut public services to the bone. This ill thought out policy is destroying our cultural heritage, and let’s face it if we do not have our past we have nothing!

Whilst up at the graveyard I noticed under a flagstone a blue click lock Tupperware container. I opened it and inside I discovered a geocaching site. Yes people visiting the yard leave a trinket or a coin along with their names and date of visit. Interesting idea, I duly left a chrome plated two pence coin and left a card with my details. Wonder how long the items will remain there?

Photo 04 - Very early memorial!
Wild Trout Competition!

It’s not long now so potential competitors should start looking out their gear and get a few practice casts in! The details are as follows - our annual wild trout competition will be held on Saturday the 25th of April on St Mary’s Loch fishing to be between the hours of 10.00 and 16.00hrs. Competitors should meet up at the Glen Cafe from 09.15 hrs for inception and the post mortem and weigh in at the Tibbies includes a barbeque commencing 16.30hrs. The patter is always good so if you fancy a cast do come along you will be most welcome!


Photo 05 - The cache!
The wider world in my view!

Re visiting the Pie Tax!

Well not quite, but you would be right if you are thinking of another blundering policy from the “Omnishambles” government the Con-Dems! Another ill thought out idea fronted by Lord Snooty saying that 3 days paid leave should be given to employees willing to volunteer their services to a charity!

It’s a laudable aim but as usual ill thought out! Who is going to pay for the nurses missing from the wards whilst they carry out this admirable work? Who will pay for the agency staff that would require to be drafted in to cover the missing nurses? Employers will be trembling at the very thought! Like the Pie Tax another useless uttering from the posh boys filling up their days meddling with our lives! Five further years of this lot it doesn’t bear thinking about!

Photo 06 - The lack of maintenance is obvious!
Head and shoulders above the rest!

I am of course referring to the back to back debates that took place this week in particular the second one which included the Greens and UKIP. This lively debate highlighted why Nicola Sturgeon is our country’s First Minister. This was the ideal forum to gang up on her and whilst they attempted to catch her out she defended her position admirably!

The three duds in the debate were Borg Queen Ruth Davidson who although she spoke very well, spouted the usual toxic to Scots Tory dogma and as such was not worth hearing and will be completely ignored! Puppet Rennie, leader of the Scottish puppets desperately tried to justify the stance of the puppets in propping up the joke administration that is the Con-Dems! Of course Scots have no time for colluding puppets and his words fell on deaf ears!

The UKIP representative David Coburn he who likened an SNP MSP to Abu Hamsa continued to make an ass of himself with nonsensical and racially aggravating comments and will rightly be ignored by the Scots! Patrick Harvie from the Greens spoke very well and makes some convincing arguments for reforming the social structure in our society.

 Jim Murphy managed to score some good points but for Labour it’s too little too late! Labour have increased their poll rating in Scotland but not at the expense of the SNP rather the also rans! Nicola Sturgeon let slip that a future referendum could be in the 2016 manifesto which is excellent news and will undoubtedly lead to yet a further increase in SNP membership!

The debates have provided a glimpse of the respective party leaders and with a hint of some of their policies and may well sway some people into taking a position. The two that came out on top were the SNP and the Greens but there could be no doubt that Sturgeon was head and shoulders above the rest!
Promises, promises!
Leaning the puppets aside on the basis of their being irrelevant both Labour and Tory party's are spouting forth at an alarming rate promising the earth! Of course this has always been the way in the run up to an election! The most important factors in deciding whether or not to believe such promises are credibility and verifiable funding sources!
The Tories are coming out with some huge spending figures and on the back of as yet unspecified cuts! Labour have put forward more modest spending on more modest cuts and crucially have a solid base explaining where the spending money would be found! On the subject of credibility the Tories have none! Delaying the recovery funding growth by debt no good can come of this false recovery! It's difficult to see Labour's credibility given they are in opposition but seriously could they be any worse!
Yes the pledges are coming thick and fast and probably the safest bet is to ignore them all! Simply consider the way the Con-Dems have looked after their own and harried the poor, weak and disabled and make your decision on that basis!
On Clarkson!
Looks like he has finally seen the light bowing out of hosting "Have I got news for you"! Bullies in any arena are not welcome! Maybe he will at some point return to the human race, Fie Mr Clarkson Fie!

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