Thursday, 28 February 2008
I got the tragic news recently that one of my oldest friends had been killed in a motor cycle accident in Thailand.
Ruaraidh Johnstone was one of those friends that you can't remember meeting. If I told you that he introduced me to the delights of "shove ha'penny", that might give you a clue as to how long ago it was. He bought me my first ever pint in a pub. It was one of those moments that stays with you forever. I felt ten feet tall that night in the Ardlui Hotel after a days fishing on Loch Lomond. Fishing was one of Ruaraidh's great passions. He was a genius with the fly but infuriating at the same time. He was the one who always caught something when everyone else didn't. In our teens we spent many hours walking the hills above Clydebank, fishing the Greenside and the various other lochs en route.
After school finished and we all started our respective further studies, Ruaraidh packed his bags and headed off to his beloved Ardlui. He worked for the railway and forestry commission and laterally ran the Highlander Restaurant in Tyndrum. It didn't matter how much time had elapsed between meeting up with him in the intervening years, within minutes, the banter was back and things carried on as normal. There was always a buzz about Ruaraidh. He was his own man.
I last met him at his 50th birthday party in 2003 and as you can see by the photos, he was on his usual top form. It was at the party he told me was thinking of going to teach in Thailand. My late mother always said of him that he was one of the most academically gifted pupils she had ever taught. She was right. His daughter Nikki told me that he was the happiest she had ever seen him and he was loved by everyone in his new adopted country.
The top photograph was taken in Clydebank back in 1970. His passing has hit me hard and I will miss him greatly.
Tuesday, 19 February 2008
I went to watch my youngest son Andrew play football in Glasgow on Sunday. What a disaster ! His problem is that he is extremely fast and gets singled out very quickly by the opposition. If you can't catch him, just trip him up!
In this case, the opposition goalie shoulder charged him in a tackle which would have got you sent off in a rugby match never mind the fact it was under 15 football. All he got was a yellow card, unbelievable!
Result for Andrew, one broken arm which now rules him out of his place in Glasgow Schools for this season and his quarter final at Kilmarnock today.
Here he is waiting for his X-Ray at the A&E, Paisley Royal. He was very unhappy about
missing the football and then started thinking about everything else that goes with a
"Aw Naw ! I'll not be able to play the guitar for five weeks", he said.
What a life.
I was recently asked by a client if I had any shots of the Forth Railway Bridge which they could use on their web site.
I remembered taking one from North Queensferry many years ago. As you can see, it looks
very strange on its side and sepia toned. If you turn your head sideways it becomes a lot clearer.
Tuesday, 12 February 2008
I was asked to photograph a joint 25th and 40th birthday party at the Unicorn Brasserie in Kincardine on Saturday night.
With the champagne flowing and everyone in party mode I was told there was to be a surprise announcement.
Now they say there is a first time in life for everything and this was a first for me.
Unbeknown to party girl Karen, her boyfriend had decided to use the occasion to propose to her. In the time honoured tradition and in the middle of the proceedings, Kevin got down on one knee and popped the question. A totally astonished Karen accepted and the party really kicked off.
All in all it was great night. The food was absolutely brilliant and the staff were on
top form. I think there would have been a few fragile people on Sunday morning.
Tuesday, 5 February 2008
Remember the wee dog from early in January, well have a look now. My pal Alastair's retriever, is growing at an alarming rate as you can see.
Skye is now allowed out for walks and likes nothing better than chewing sticks or anything else for that matter. I'll post up a photo every month and we can see her growing up.