The Grand Tour: Fife and Beyond

Ramblings of an inveterate cyclist

Wednesday

I did take my conventional bike out, well, I was having withdrawal symptom. The wind was out of the east and in St Andrews there is no way to head any further east on a bike, so I ran with the wind first Strathkinness – then Dairsie before a hard beat home via Guardbridge. Since these short runs are more about daily exercise, than distance, I tend to put in a bit more effort, higher gears and a few hills thrown in. exercises is easy if you enjoy it.

There are roadworks and temporary traffic lights everywhere, I am at a loss to understand why they did not do much of this patching when the roads were (more or less) free of traffic during lock down.

Children in Scotland, we are told by the finding of the “What Kids Are Reading” survey, have been reading longer and more challenging books during lockdown. The experts tell us it is down to having more time to read allowing kids to immerse themselves in literature. And it is true I have been devouring books by the dozen these past few months and not only sticking to my normal diet but dipping into all sort of faire. And yes even reading well above my reading age level, why I even try read the Guardian (with all its big difficult words).

We have a library here at City Park, the books are changed on a regular basis by the local library, which I very handy for those that need large print books. However, I find their choice of books a bit on the feminine side. Thankfully we have a section that is books read by the residents then left for others to read. When the collection gets a bit too big, the old books will go to a local charity shop, from whence most of them came. I find this section much more to my liking. At the moment I am reading “Becoming Michelle Obama” and just loving it.

Written in an easy manner and so true to life. The simple stories of her childhood can be very amusing to read, but also tell a lot about Michelle’s self-driven childhood, she was always going to get there. I have always admired her, she is beautiful, exceptionally clever I believe she deliberately tones that down, more so when she was First Lady, well you would not wish to usurp the President of the United States, would you?

Once I start a book I am reluctant to put it down, even if I find it not to my taste. One such book this week was “Bay of Sighs” by Nora Roberts. Described on the back cover as Nora Roberts – the world’s greatest storyteller. Bay of Sighs: two of the Guardians Trilogy – an enchanting novel of love, magic and destiny. It was easy reading by really, mermaids borrowing legs to help fight evil, na not for me.

Saturday will be the 1st of May, this was a big day in the calendar when I was a boy, the Miner’s Gala when we would all get dressed up in Sunday best and march behind the bands all the way to a local field for a picnic and games.

In Europe (especial in Austria) May Day is still calibrated big time but much more grown up, beer and jazz bands.

I hear that the Yes groups are getting together in small groups across the country to show the flag for independence – so I will be off to Dundee tomorrow for the May Day celebrations there.

Thursday

Is now the only day I buy The National newspaper (although I do read the headlines every day on the internet) for me it has become a “We Love Nicola Sturgeon” fan club newsletter. But Thursday is different I need my fix of Lesley Riddock. Today in her own inevitable way she tells us about the launch of “The Europe for Scotland” campaign. It is a letter that had been signed by many leading lights, encouraging Scots towards Indiref2 and a bid for EU membership in our own right as an independent state.

She is quick to point out that none of the signatories wishes to tell Scotland what to do or how to vote, but wish to clear the path of traps and road blocks, should we wish to take that path. This along with stopping Westminster from muddling the waters, by asking the EU to put out the welcome mat, and say clearly and unanimously, If an independent Scotland wishes – the door is open for membership. If you wish to support the letter by signing it too, then go to http://www.euroeforscotland.

A week today we go to the polls to elect a new Scottish parliament, even with restrictions lifted I see little in the form of campaigning, and what we hear from the standing hopefuls and their leaders on the television, they may as well have done a re-run of any of the election campaigns of the last decade. No matter what anyone says, there will never be settlement here, and Scotland will never move forward, until the constitution question is settled. Maybe this time around.

Well short and sweet today, the weather is too good to be hanging around here, time to check the tyres and get on my bike, now where did I put my hay fever tablets?

Stay safe.  

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