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‘My Holiday – Part One – The Cool Box of Pies’

My Holiday
I’ve not written for a while ( a good thing I hear you say 🙂 ) but I thought I’d try and get back into it by writing about my weeks holiday. Unfortunately, for most readers, I didn’t climb Everest, nor did I get chased by a man eating lion through the African jungle, nor did I hang out with Paul Pogba. Nope. We took the ferry to Northern Ireland, stayed a few nights and returned on the ferry. That was it really. Unexciting though can be interesting in a weird way. Let’s return to last Monday………..
My other half likes to be in pole position for the ferry or ‘pole pozish’ as she calls it. First on and first off. Her Dad did it so we are carrying on the tradition 🙂 So, we always have to leave early and sit for ages in the priority lane. This morning was no different. 
There’s usually a bit of ‘titting and luffing’ before we go. Mainly due to me being tired and being rushed out the door. 
‘If you forget anything we can buy it when we’re over there…..’
‘But I’m still naked……’
‘For goodness sake we’ve only got 15 minutes…….’
See, the first rule of Game of Hols is be ready the night before. Sleep in the holiday attire, thus allowing you to be baled into the car even if you’re half asleep. Of course, one of the reasons we had to leave earlier was to get 24 Scotch pies from a bakers 16 miles away for Uncle Ian. Oh, and a box of Excel Cheese crisps. Oh, and a haggis. I should say Uncle Ian is lovely and fully deserving of 24 pies transported all the way from the Land Of His Birth but………
Did I mention the word ‘transported’. Therein lies another story. To transport said pies and haggis, my other half suggested we order a cool box from Amazon Prime. For those of you who don’t know, Amazon Prime was invented by Amazon to rake more money from punters to ensure next day delivery. I would have loved to have been working for Amazon the day Prime was invented…..
‘Hey, we’re falling behind in delivery dates. People are complaining more and more about late deliveries, but we just can’t keep up. There aren’t enough white van men to cope with the fact that due to people becoming ever increasingly lazy, and can’t be arsed going to the shops, we’re getting a billion orders every femtosecond’
‘What if we introduce a Premium rate which we’ll charge customers to ensure their goods are prioritised next day delivery and the rest of them get their goods whenever?’
‘Great idea Michael. We could charge say £79 and call it Amazon Prime!!’  
Now, I know you can now watch bespoke televisual series on it, and The Grand Tour, but mainly your paying for quick delivery. The only thing is, sometimes, you click on something labelled ‘available for Prime delivery, you click on it, but you don’t notice the Prime bit has disappeared. Even worse is the email saying ‘You’re delivery will arrive between 12:33pm and 13:33pm. Not going to be in. Please let us know’. So, you wait and wait and wait. Then you receive an email ‘Sorry you were not in when we called. Please let us know when it would be suitable…..’
Not in….Not in!!! I had to watch 3 episodes of Housewives of Atlanta while i waited for my ‘Mrs /Beashams Guide to Cooking’ which never arrived until a week henceforth. 
Ok, as usual, I’m digressing just a tad and, if anyone from Amazon is reading this, you do generally deliver when u say u will……….. so no hard feelings eh?
So…….cool boxes.
I asked ‘What size is it. It looks big.’
Measuring tape appears……
‘Only 48 x 30….so not that big….’
‘But it’s got wheels…..’
‘Too late i’ve clicked Prime.’
24hrs later………
‘You were right… is big….’
‘What is?’
‘The cool box’
‘Oh…it’s arrived. I never heard the van. Ok where is it?’
‘In the Hall’
………and, there it was, the biggest coolbox in the World. 
‘It’s got 4 bits on the top to hold drinks, and you can use it as a seat or a table’
‘Will it fit in the car?’
‘I’m not sure’
‘Will we get our suitcases in as well as the Cool Box?’
‘I’m not sure…………but it will keep the 24 pies cool for five days…..’

The Cool Box of all Cool Boxes ☺️

The next morning there was actually not much titting and fuffing. There was also only room for only one case in the boot 🙂
We set off to get pies, Excel crisps and Haggis, oh and get the ferry to Northern Irelend. 
I have to say those officials involved in Tescos coming to Castle Douglas deserve a pat on the back. They told them they could build their new shop, but it couldn’t have a butchers, a fishmongers or bakery in store. The net result is Castle Douglas High St still has such things. Corsan’s pies, Lentil soup, cream buns and Loren sausage rolls with tomato sauce are to die for. The butchers next door, Ballards, has won awards for it’s haggis and it’s steak pies. These are places of wonder. Preserved for us all by those clever people who dared to stand up to the bland buildings that now pose as supermarkets. 

Corsans the Bakers

This morning it was pea and ham soup. Add a Loren sausage roll and a Diet Coke, I was in heaven. 
‘What are you doing?’
‘I brought little freezer bags to put the pies in’
‘I think it’ll fit in a one-r’
‘Do you think so?’
‘Och aye. Nae bother. Save you bagging them up in threee’s and we can have our soup’
………………one minute later
‘Och you get in the car while I put them in the bags….and DON’t touch my bacon roll!!’
The biggest cool box in the world and it couldn’t take a tray of pies in one go. 
I sulked in the car sipping my soup while Fran titted and fuffed in the kingdom of the Cool Box.

Eventually, with pies and haggis safely aboard, we set off for Cairnryan and the ferry. 
If you’ve never been to Dumfries and Galloway, it’s lovely. Green lush countryside then lovely vies of the Solway firth and you trundle along at 40mph behind tractors and lorries. Now, I’m not one shouting for a 6 lane motorway to Stranraer but Lord Beecham deserves a heavenly slap with a wet fish. Back in 1963, he decided it was not worth keeping the Dumfries to Stranraer rail link alive because it was not cost effective. So, they closed it and all that’s left are overgrown viaducts and dodgy bridges with signs saying ‘Dangerous – Keep Out’. We have a painting on our living room wall with how it looked in it’s heyday painted by the son of one of the train drivers. 
Thanks to Lord Beecham and his cronies, if you hit ferry traffic along the A75, you might as well stop and eat a pie. 

Apart from one twazzock, who insisted in overtaking as many cars, lorries and caravans as possible, then sitting two feet off the next vehicle, the trip was slow but event free. We eventually found ourselves in pole position at the ferry terminal getting ready for the next stage of the journey….an hour and a half of people watching….
… time…….Japanese tourists, conversations on a boat, the marching season, the jogging drama….. all here on TheWorldAccordingToDave
‘My Holiday – Part One – The Cool Box of Pies’ was brought to you by Dodo Productions © 2017 .Follow me on Twitter @qosfc1919 and you can email me at 


Summers long gone

Summer was weird this year.Not just because of those Daleks that turned up in the close one morning looking for directions, but because it was not really a summer. One great week at the beginning of June. That was really the end of the summer. Now we find ourselves dark before 5:20pm. Now we are bolstering ourselves down for an unknown winter. If you read the Daily Express we are in for an apolyptic winter, with temperatures dropping so low your toes will fall off. I think they said that last year and maybe the year before that too. In the meantime I’ve prepared for the worst winter of despair by drawing. Last year I met a few good people and one beacon was Mark Leggat, author of The London Cage. He’s an intelligent and funny man and has a dog called McWuff. For some reason I decided to try and sketch him (McWuff not Mark) ☺️ Here is my attempt ☺️




While I continue to beaver away on the 2nd part of ‘The 100 Runes of Mystor’and the launch of ‘The Scotsmanauts’ I’m looking back at some of the photographs and drawings I’ve done in recent times. The old adage ‘Jack of All Trades…Master of None’ probably sums me up. I flit from one hobby to another instead of concentrating of one and becoming brilliant at it. Photography and Art are just two of many hobbies I plitter about with.

One night during late Summer I was called to the window to see a young hare in our garden. With the sunset glowing in the background, our young visitor looked beautiful. I quickly grabbed my camera before it disappeared………….

……….a few nights later i decided to attempt a quick sketch of our little friend…………..

it only took 20 minutes but it’s prompted me to work on a proper colour version before Xmas ☺️ 


I wish I wasn’t lazy. I heard about the photographer who won the Countryfile Calendar photo competition. They stood in waders in a river for eleven hours before they captured a kingfisher. Now THAT’S endeavour. ☺️ Me? I have the attention span of a gnat so it’s weird I even take a decent photo now and again…..

 Maisie the Cat

The story of how Maisie the Cat ended up with us is worth a minor discussion. We’d put off having another cat after Spike, our first ever cat passed away. Eventually we decided to visit the Cat Protection League and have a look at Maisie. She’d been in and out of homes and allegedly been in a feral situation with several other cats at some point. When we went to have a look at her, she was so shy. There was a cat in the next cage who was all over us but, for some reason we chose Maisie. It’s taken weeks and weeks but she’s calmed down. She has been bringing her food up now and again but we’ve put that down to eating too quickly. She also finds the outside world a scary place and won’t venture more than 20 feet beyond the kitchen door. We’ll get there eventually…… here she is lying in front of the woodburner tonight ☺️ 

Pictures – YouTube and the glass apple 

Drawing and me are a bit like Donald Trump is to politics, not very compatible. Give me a blank sheet of paper and I’d struggle. However, give me something to copy or a photo to generate an idea and…..I’m sort of in there. As I mentioned in another post, for someone who doesn’t really draw, I have more art materials than Donald Trump has gaffes (I was going to say ‘sorry’ if you’re a Donald Trump supporter reading this but that would also be ridiculous ☺️). Based on art materials alone, I should be in the Premier League of artists. But, when you see what other people can do, I’m in the Sunday League of the Art world,  and that probably being disrespectful to the Sunday League. 🤔

With a bit of practice and tuition you can improve though. YouTube is an amazing source of art tuition. I’m subscribed to several proper artists Channels. They are full of tricks and trips on drawing just about anything. Before I started following them I was drawing very basic things. Let me go off through my iPad photos and see if I can find an example……. stay with me………

………..ok thanks for waiting ☺️ this is an early ‘d’ actually drawn using Paper by 53, an app on the iPad. So, I didn’t even leave my seat to ‘draw’ this. You can imagine en emperors clothes type of art critic saying ‘Oh Dahling…..I like its simplicity and the colours, they just jump out at you…..’ When, actually, a 5 year old could probably have done better. ☺️

But, there’s a guy called Marcello Barenghi, who has his own YouTube channel…… he is one of many amazing artists. He taught me to do this……..

Just by watching a 5 minute sped up video by Marcello, I could draw a glass green apple using pastel pencils. I was quite pleased, but, of course, to put my smile back in the pot, Marcello can do this…….

Maybe next week I’ll try that one…….☺️

Pictures – frogs or toads

Not too sure whether this is a frog or a toad so I apologise to the amphibian world for my lack of ignorance ☺️

I love Robins

I don’t know why it is but I love Robins. Over the years several have visited our garden, albeit I’d like to think they are all one and the same. Here’s my little Robin drawing as a tribute to my little friends……. 

Pictures – A Wren

Everyone has a talent. I always emphasise one person can be great at something whilst another can be great at something completely different. Learning and understanding what a persons talents are key to good management. I am not an artist but, If I concentrate and practice, I can draw. No person should limit themselves to what they think they can do……

Pictures – Hummingbirds

We have some great little birds in the UK. I love Robins, Pied Wagtails, Blue Tits, our Housemartins who arrive in May and depart in September. In other countries though they benefit from birds who’s colour’s are amazing. hummingbirds are one of these. Just amazing. I decided to try and draw one. 

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