Sunday, 24 March 2013
It was minus -8 overnight but as long as you cycled in the sun it was fine.
Clydebank, of course, was famous for its shipbuilding and was heavily bombed during the Second World War. The Polish destroyer ORP Piorun happened to be undergoing repairs at John Browns Shipyard at that time and returned fire with its guns. Over 500 hundred civilians' were killed and hundreds more injured over two nights of carnage. Worth a look. Once inside Click on picture of tram to see full impact on just one street.
These flats at Radnor Park were built after the war to rehouse folk. The big employer in Clydebank, apart from the ship yards, was Singer's. In its heyday it was the biggest sewing machine factory in the world: It had Britain's largest clock face at 26 feet in diameter adorning its huge iconic clock tower and it was the second largest clock face anywhere in the world. It employed 12'000 to 14'000 workers when it was at its peak including my mum and dad who met there. Time for an 'Aw.'
Time for an 'Ach, that's no right. Where's all the full time jobs gone?'
If you look at its history in here its the modern equivalent of an international puffer. Carries general cargo and fairly gets around Europe. Hard working ship. Probably carrying a load of scrap metal here from Renfrew Car breakers yards as that's big money nowadays and highly sought after. Next stop could be Germany, Holland or London. It used to be called The Apollo and I've snapped it before on the Clyde years ago. Good to see the river is still getting used for some trade.
Converted warehouse at Port Dundas. Glasgow City. Now upmarket apartments.
Keeping to a general feeling of times past here's a couple of cracking videos you may like. Double 'aw'. Those of you of a certain vintage may remember a time when children got dirty and played outside unsupervised. (Actually the kids around me do that all the time as well so its only some areas and a media brainwash sort of thing that sometimes goes on.) Want an Example? Weather forecasters and news now... Snow in March! Whoever heard of that happening! Its the middle of Spring! Yeah, right. I'll keep calling March a winter month thank you. It always was before. Its bad in Arran now admittedly but I went there in Late March ten years ago and it certainly didn't feel like Spring. I've had snow in early May over there up on the ridge and didn't think it was that unusual so I'm keeping March firmly in winter until I'm proved wrong.
Belter of a video and a great song as well. You might see yourself in here.
Brings back memories of short trousers and very sore knees as a child. Ouch!
I should have posted this second video along with the Glasgow. City of Towers Post but I'll slot it in here instead. Loads of memories in here for anyone brought up on a Glasgow housing estate in the 1950's and 1960's. You might even see your house in this one.
PS. Just found an amazing video of the development of Glasgow's districts after the Second World war. Its a real winner so I've attached it to the Glasgow. City of Towers post from two weeks ago as it explains that entire post perfectly.
Monday, 18 March 2013
Its a popular hill but the path was a lot boggier than I remembered it and proved tough going with a foot of mushy snow on top of thick mud in places. A problem that's been a curse all year given the extremely wet summer we have had during 2012.
You can also see from its friend here how Goats have always been associated with the Devil and the personification of evil although they are harmless enough beasts with a nice nature. As a nature naïve teenager I was once walking back to a remote cottage alone in the dark on a secluded path through some dark and tangled woods on Bute when a six foot high horned apparition suddenly appeared around the side of an old gnarled tree with a loud groaning noise. I came very close to peeing my pants in shock until I realised it was just a large billy goat straining up to its fullest extent on hind legs to reach some juicy leaves above its head. Down through the centuries this sight and others like it must have occurred often, giving them their undeserved reputation as being a gateway to dark forces and the wilder side of human nature. They are probably the inspiration for the Ancient God Pan. The spirit of wild places and hidden desires released by the Greeks and Romans through wine. Only a myth? Well, its still a problem for todays society as prisons are full of people who have let the dark side of this old forgotten god take over their souls. They just call it something else now, that's all.
A sight of Ben Venue at last from Beinn Bhreac.
Todays video carries on the Goat/ Devil theme. A Russian film linked to an American group known for their ability to conjure up mysterious and atmospheric music. A classical /dark Gothic instrumental group they have stumbled into a lucrative market as they are now used widely in films and horror type theme parks.
Nox Arcana. Night of the Wolf.
This is better than most, and a good match in my opinion but its obviously not scary enough for a discerning modern audience raised on 3D gore and gut spurting reality games. Its nice and atmospheric in a quaint, old school way. Pretty wife returns from the dead. Shame about the nails but nothing a good manicure couldn't fix. Don't really understand what the problem is here. I'd have her back like a shot. Just separate coffins as her own one looks waterlogged for some strange reason. Maybe vampires are all secretly incontinent in their sleep. Still, beggars cant be fussy:)
Wednesday, 13 March 2013
I assured him they would.
He assured me they would not.
' You're an obsessional nutter that sees the world differently from most other people.' He insisted. 'Not everyone shares your vision of what's around you, you know. Your barking mad ,but in a good way.'
After I'd shot two of his toes off for daring to criticise the Great and Powerful 'Me' I came to the startling conclusion he might well be right.
For years I've been toying with the idea of the ultimate photographic 'grand homage' to Glasgow's ring of mighty towers that dominate almost every view of Glasgow. No other city in the UK has embraced the concept of towers in the sky so fully.
All The photographs on this Post should be clicked full size to get a true appreciation of scale.
Where did this begin I hear you ask?
Stay with me and I will tell you I reply.
The Great Father of Modernism, as all my readers will undoubtedly already know, my limping, eight toed, little friend, was Le Corbusier who envisaged a future metropolis of towers rising into the air.
A vast interconnected machine where citizens would live, work, play, fight, and die together in a high rise environment which would provide everything for them, like cogs in a vast, smoothly operating, machine. Homes would be mere slots on the side of a giant building, stretching towards the sun, as prophesized in his visionary 1933 book 'The Radiant city.'
Sure other cities have hi rise towers, but most are concentrated inside the city centre itself not in a large outer ring scattered around the suburbs with green spaces between them exactly as he described them in that ground breaking tome..http://www.modernism101.com/corbusier_radiant_city.php
Maybe he himself was inspired by the 1927 Fritz Lang classic Metropolis. Or just maybe, being Swiss then adopting France as his home, it was the shining towers of free standing winter ice he undoubtedly would have seen on his travels that left an impression on him.
What do you mean Dorothy's city was full of primary colours and hidden dangers: A land of good and evil characters and mysterious realms visited? Box Ticked. Munchkinlanders. Actually the Firhill Polis.
What's that two toes? She left her own world behind her and entered a new one through a worm hole?
Easy. How's that?
There.Satisfied now. Box ticked!
'Christ on a crutch! Dorothy had a four legged window polisher, a timid scarecrow, a leaky tin arsehole and a cowardly lion for her friends and they weren't as troublesome put together as you are now you crabbit faced hop along. What do you mean you want sometime stronger than paracetamol?'
Everywhere you look in Glasgow Le Corbusier's dream/nightmare of brutal modernism is alive and well. Only when the last one of these great leviathans topples into the streets below will we be free of this influential architects vision. One which transformed the modern world we see around us today.
Call us legion, for we are many....We live in the Emerald City of Glasgow.
The Great and Powerful City of Towers.
Talking of free standing towers of winter ice this is a short but stunning film of just that. It should be watched full screen. A dazzling city of melting ice with tiny figures in the middle of it.
Breathtakingly beautiful. Did this inspire le Corbusier perhaps? Watched in HD this is amazing.
Just found a video that is a perfect explanation of the thinking behind the multi story approach. Its 18 minutes long but worth every second as it shows you a fantastic archive of Glasgow and its people and the construction of its districts after the second world war. If you live in Glasgow, East Kilbride or Cumbernauld or have done in the past you wont want to miss this. Five star film of a bygone era of optimism. Typical 'old style' commentary but it gets better with each minute passed. Wish I'd found it earlier.
Friday, 8 March 2013
Coming down off the summit. Just enough snow to make it interesting but not enough to hamper progress as its a fair old trek to the top for old duffers like us. As I was fresh I think I enjoyed this hill even more than John and Alex as they were tired and heavy legged from the first day which was fairly tough as well.
A view across to Sgurr Dhomonuill, at 2914 metres the highest peak in the area.
Very good weekend. Excellent company and weather.
Video this week asks the question 'where is the limit for extreme sports nowadays and where will it end?. Posted this because an 11 year old is shattering records previously thought just 10 years ago as being completely impossible. An English girl of roughly the same age has climbed the massive walls on Yosemite with her dad recently. Makes you think. I'm glad I did my climbing when E 1 was though of as a hard route. This is just ridiculous. I probably couldn't even get off the ground on the route outside shown at the end. 40 years from now will we be able to fly without wings? She makes it all look so easy as well. Gutted!