Summer 2009 – Week 2 ending 15th July

18 Jul

Two down five to go. The weather is not improving. Kathryn and I are arguing over which of us is the actual real-life rain-goddess in this family. I think she’s a bitty premature trying to take over before she’s left home. I always deferred to my mother when it rained on every day off, planned excursion and foreign holiday when I was a child. By my 20s people at work would actually cancel days off it they found out I was also off. It was that bad. It is that bad. Rain loves me.

My Dad headed  back to Mexico for another 4 weeks on the 10th. Before he left he had an urge to pick berries. My generation was the last in our family to pick berries for money. It’s not that the eastern european back-packers have forced us native berry-pickers out of the dreels, it’s just that we’ve reached a level of economic prosperity oh be honest snobbery, that makes us think twice about picking raspberries and running screaming and flailing from wasps for £5 a day (in 1982 money – I’ve no idea what you can earn now), or more to the point allowing our children to… smack me, I just hand them money. My parents didn’t let me pick tatties, I don’t let mine pick berries, the end of that road has been reached.

We live in the berry capital here in Perthshire so there’s no lack of “Pick Your Own” farms. My Dad wanted to pick (back-breaking) strawberries for some insane reason.

Needless to say the sky turned black and the rain fell as soon as we hit the strawberry fields.

The boys learned quickly it’s better to eat the berries in the raspberry dreels, much more in the way of cover… from the rain and the farmer.

Opening the floodgates for a berry scoffing fest. And the sun at last. See. Shadows.

They really ought to have weighed us before we started picking, rather than the baskets.

We took our haul to the weighing station (eventually) where Paul made a friend. Once our berries were all weighed and paid for Paul asked my Mum, “Can we eat them now?”. We couldn’t have bribed him to time it better. Clever boy.

We ended up with more than we could possibly eat. It’s the picking that evokes the memories, not the the eating, not once they are paid for anyway. My Mum made jam.

On Friday it rained. Kathryn was invited to a party that required the wearing of colourful, luminous, neon clothing. This stuff is anathema to my child. She does black very well. Some beads, glowsticks and my mates 7 year old daughter’s leggings and laces later and she had gone as far as she was willing to go in the name of “joining in”.


On Saturday the sun came out. This called for bubbles…


And lying around moaning about the heat. Obviously.

And how difficult it is to take photos in blinding sunlight. Obviously.


Could have taken the gloves off, obviously.

On the 12th of July Paul wore pants on his head. Notalot I can say about that other than express my surprise at how much a pair of pants can change the shape of your face. Pity they can’t change the shape of my bum.

The sun/rain/sun/rain hourly rota continued on. We went to the beach at St Andrews anyway. We had a pretty good chance of getting an hour of sunshine and an hour of rain, the only question being the order they came in. We hit the jackpot and got almost a whole hour of sun, during which I lamented the lack of suncream, followed immediately by 2 hours of torrential rain starting just as we laid out the picnic. Is there any country with predictable weather out there willing to let is immigrate?


Don’t let the sweatshirt fool you – it was hot. It was brief but it was hot.

It took me a while to notice I had the ISO set way up at 800, with the camera on Aperture Priority it wasn’t immediately obvious. The skies I was capturing were most cool though. I got the kids to jump around as the wind came in and decided I like this “wrong” setting.


Can’t believe this is the same sky on the same day.


Cool sky SooC…


On 15th July we just thought “stuff it” and went out in a thunder storm. May as well. We got the park virtually to ourselves whilst the lightening flashed and the thunder rolled behind us.


Only the fact we were at the coast kept it at bay.


The kids braved ice-cream while we had coffee.


Yes that is tape holding MrWs glasses together. He lost a pair and broke a pair the last week of term. He’ll have to get a new pair before school starts… or when he loses this pair. That is not a challenge mate.

There was a purpose to all this “fresh” air. It puggled out Paul so he couldn’t be bothered raising the roof when the rest of us headed of to see Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. My Mum took him out for dinner, we didn’t leave him to fend for himself. I love a busy cinema, so long as I am in the back row and don’t have some arsey kid kicking the back of my seat. With foresight (I’m not pretty when a kid’s kicking my seat, not even a bit) we pre-booked tickets. Which is just as well as all the showings on opening day were sold out. It was a very dark movie (glad I remembered my glasses or I would have been peering a bit). I came away somewhat unsatisfied but as my daughter reminded me I wasn’t all that satisfied at the end of the book either. They know me so well.


One Response to “Summer 2009 – Week 2 ending 15th July”

  1. Yelena R. August 4, 2009 at 8:59 pm #

    Beautiful photos! Wow, berry picking looks amazing! I never actually got around to it this summer…but I’ve sure enjoyed the berries that my friends shared with me 🙂

    p.s. You blog is lovely!

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