Monthly Archives: April 2012

Gone to the dogs

Shawfield Dog Races, GlasgowIt’s cold outside.  Still, I’ve been convinced to venture out and somehow find myself at the Shawfields Dog Races.

The icy wind drives us straight into the café where it’s Scotch pie and chips all round – stuffed with stoge we’re ready to try our luck.

Picking a winner – it’s in the name

I don’t know a thing about dog racing.  So I instinctively go with the name – Hats Diamond sounds like a winner to me.  Happy with my choice I place my £2 bet and settle in trackside.  But my luck is short-lived when my son points out my odds; I’ve backed the dud of the field.

And they’re off

Winning ticket at  Shawfield Dog Races, GlasgowThe bell rings, the neon pink striped hare shoots off and the dogs are in hot pursuit.

It’s a blur of motion and I can’t even see where Hats Diamonds is.  Then suddenly – apparent catastrophe as the front runners collide and all the favourites are out of the running.

And from the back Hats Diamond charges to the front and suddenly I’m on my feet myself yelling at the top lungs, “Come on number 3”.   He must have heard me because he does it. Hysteria in the family and we’re jumping up and down celebrating our unlikely winner.

Take a £2 chance – but know when to walk away

I go to collect my winnings – £27 back on a £2 bet that amply covers my £12 entry fee.  The nipping cold lifts and we’re suddenly experts, studying the dogs before making our choice for the next race.  Bets placed, we eagerly watch the hare, the blur of dogs but unfortunately no winner this time round.

Lucky Friday 13th

I’m buzzing from the excitement of it all.   After all, the underdog did me proud. And for 60 seconds watching the dogs whip round the track is magnetic –everyone willing their favourites to win.

So if you’re feeling particularly lucky – and happen to have a talent for picking fluky well-named winners, check out the finals of the Greyhound Derby on Friday 13 April.

– B


Silent Sunday – 8 April

Oh it’s such a perfect day….I’m glad I spent it with you (in Glasgow)

Just another day in Glasgow

Escape the city for something green and magical

With over 90 parks and gardens in Glasgow, it’s understandable that you might not get around to seeing them all.  But the South Side’s Pollock Park is not to be missed.   There is so much to this fantastic sprawling space – and the Burrell Collection is only part of its charm.

Woodland wonder

Pond in Pollock Park, GlasgowFirst up are the woodland trails – each one with its own attractions.   I’m keen to find the big dray horses and visitor centre but I’m overruled by my husband and the boys – and so our quest for the Fort begins.

Admittedly it’s not as freakishly balmy as a few weeks ago but it’s still good to be out walking in the woods, taking in the scenery and soaking up the sights and sounds.  Even learned a little about ‘predator pikes’ but didn’t see any lurking in the pond.

Breathe in the history

We reach the Iron Age Fort and it’s amazing – and apparently one of the best preserved.  You can see the ringed ditch with earthen banking on both sides – and even though you might need a bit of imagination to fill in the rest, the history is heavy in the air.  Admittedly the boys aren’t as impressed by its historical significance and would rather duel with their wooden sticks than admire a 2000 year old artefact.

Feeling adventurous we stray off the trail for the rest of our walk following the path of beautiful forget-me-nots and daffodils that lead us to a peculiar looking loveseat carved from a tree-trunk – a rather magical discovery.

Easter egg challenge anyone?

It’s  easy to spend the entire day here – and it’s well worth checking it out over the Easter weekend for the egg treasure hunt on Sunday – or explore the visitor centre.  And if you’re feeling extra bold, enjoy a dray ride with the Clydesdale Horses.

– B

Behave yourself….or not. But don’t miss this festival!

Behaviour isn’t your average festival.  Thankfully.

It’s an adventure fuelled by gritty performances that provide a close up look at the good, the bold, the bizarre and the beautiful.  And don’t worry, nobody minds if you stare.  In fact, they encourage it.

See everything!

Showcasing talented local and international artists – this electric and energetic programme  is so damn good that you may as well treat yourself to a ‘see everything’ festival pass and see the lot.  At £39 (£29 concession) it’s a real bargain considering the calibre and colossal list of performances on offer – there’s still over 10 different shows happening until the 29 April.    Or you can see individual shows between £4 – £11 a pop.

While many shows are happening at the Arches, others will take place across the city – some in the most interesting and unusual venues.

Surprisingly, music to my ears

Sewing Machine Orchestra at Behaviour Festival 2012Admittedly I never thought of a sewing machine as being musical but Montréaler Martin Messier’s  raw, industrial sewing machine orchestra was completely captivating.

And different.  In a good way.

Stir emotion, discover and face your fears

But this festival isn’t just about going to see live performances – it’s about stirring emotion, discovering something new and possibly even facing your fears.  Would you have the guts to set your vanity aside and let a 10-year-old kid scissor-hands cut your hair?  If the answer is yes, then definitely go to see the closing show ‘Haircuts by Children’.

There is still so much to see and experience that it’s hard to settle on a few, but I’m looking forward to hopefully also seeing (and smelling) ‘The Silence of Bees’ happening in Lush on Sauchiehall, starting  a loud rebellion at Kieran Hurley’s ‘Beats’ and experiencing the ups and downs of Bryony Kimmings’ intoxicating and entertaining ‘7 day Drunk’.

Whatever you choose, it will be right.  And it will be good.

-T #behaveyourself

Silent Sunday – 1 April

Blue skies and a bit of Charles Rennie Mackintosh inspiration….

Stereo in Glasgow