Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Bailing out

Blogger is forcing me to migrate to their new version. I don't want to - I've seen the hassles people have had with the move, and watched the server go down twice in as many weeks.

I'm moving, immediately, to Wordpress.

You can find me at:

Please update your bookmarks, bloglines and other feeds.

Monday, February 05, 2007

War on terror, is it?

More like a war on decency.

In today's Herald (sorry Jean, it's a Glasgow paper) there is an article about how German prosecutors are attempting to arrest CIA agents for the illegal abduction of a German citizen.

This week, the unthinkable happened to the untouchables. German prosecutors issued arrest warrants for 13 CIA agents in connection with the alleged abduction of a German citizen. Khaled al-Masri says he was kidnapped in Macedonia in 2003, taken to Afghanistan and accused of having ties to al Qaeda. After five months of interrogation, during which he claims to have been beaten, his captors realised they had lifted the wrong man and dumped him in Albania.

The German warrants are not the first. Italian prosecutors want to charge 25 CIA agents over the "extraordinary rendition", as the process of snatch and despatch to secret prisons is known, of a cleric from Milan. The German charges are more significant because of the country's strategic importance to the US, and the weight of evidence al-Masri, with the help of his lawyer and journalists, has been able to amass.

From being a lone voice telling a strange tale that few believed, al-Masri has the attention of the German public, media, parliament and prosecutors. Questions are being asked of ministers.

Not quite the image America would want to project, methinks.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Silent Poetry Reading

In honour of St Brigid's Day. This isn't a poem, per se, but the lyrics of a song.

Nothing ever happens
Del Amitri (a Glasgow band)

Post office clerks put up signs saying "position closed"
And secretaries turn off typewriters and put on their coats
Janitors padlock the gates
For security guards to patrol
And bachelors phone up their friends for a drink
While the married ones turn on a chat show

And they'll all be lonely tonight and lonely tomorrow

Gentlemen time please, you know we can't serve anymore
Now the traffic lights change to stop, when there's nothing to go
And by five o'clock everything's dead
And every third car is a cab
And ignorant people sleep in their beds
Like the doped white mice in the college lab

Nothing ever happens, nothing happens at all
The needle returns to the start of the song
And we all sing along like before

And we'll all be lonely tonight and lonely tomorrow

Telephone exchanges click while there's nobody there
The martians could land in the carpark and no one would care
Close-circuit cameras in department stores shoot the same video every day
And the stars of these films neither die nor get killed
Just survive constant action replay

Nothing ever happens, nothing happens at all
The needle returns to the start of the song
And we all sing along like before

And we'll all be lonely tonight and lonely tomorrow

Bill hoardings advertise products that nobody needs
While angry from manchester writes to complain about
All the repeats on t.v.
And computer terminals report some gains
On the values of copper and tin
While american businessmen snap up van goghs
For the price of a hospital wing

Nothing ever happens, nothing happens at all
The needle returns to the start of the song
And we all sing along like before
Nothing ever happens, nothing happens at all
Theyll burn down the synagogues at six oclock
And well all go along like before

And we'll all be lonely tonight and lonely tomorrow.

Well finally!

The new hotel website is complete. Please let me know if you spot anything amiss.

I'm pleased with the overall effect, and just have to complete the Polish version which was translated by Magda for me a few months ago. Then it's a gentle hint or three to the sister-in-law about a French version, and so it goes....

I'm not sure why the blogs don't show up on PCs running IE6: if you have any ideas, please shout.


My little Singer sewing machine is unwell. It's skipping stitches if I try to sew at anything approaching a reasonable speed. However I have the loan of a Janome (thanks Rei) and have been trying it out. I'm used to the Singer, so there are a few things that are irritating about the new machine, but all in all it seems a good basic machine.

As a result of this, I can report another summer blouse completed:

You can read all about it here on Pattern Review which is a wonderful site.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Tagged. Twice

Obviously I've been a little distracted recently, as I've been tagged not once but twice.

The rules of this peculiar internet game of what I used to call 'catch' are as follows:
The rules:
  1. someone tags you,
  2. you post five things about yourself that you haven’t already mentioned on your blog,
  3. you tag 5 people you’d like to know more about

I think I'm going to have trouble with '3', but here goes anyway.

Bearing in mind that this is a public forum, and linked to my business, there are definitely a few interesting things that I won't be sharing with you. Sorry.

  1. My high school didn't have a music teacher, so I shared the duty of providing the music for assembly, prizegivings etc. with three other pianists.
  2. I was a barrelina and danced until I left school at 17.
  3. I am a very keen edible gardener. That's the produce that's edible, not me! I can't get nearly as enthusiastic about flowers, but show me a row of peas, or tatties, and I'm keen.
  4. My first major sewing project was my sixth form (final year of school) ball dress. Red satin. It was easier then - I didn't know anything about fitting, but it fitted anyway.
  5. DH and I met at a Sibelius concert at Glasgow City Halls. Not your typical pick-up joint.

And people I'd like to hear from are:
  1. Jo
  2. Jean
  3. Dee (once she's recovered from the house move!)
  4. Ash (or herself if she's up for it)
  5. The Spinning Fishwife (once those windows are done)

Over to you!

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Fibre-Crafts Retreat: 18 - 21 May 2007

Yes, you read that correctly. We are going ahead with the Retreat one week later than originally advertised.

To recap, Janis Embleton of Flight Weaving and Lorna Noble of LornaJay Designs will be hosting the first Scottish Borders Fibre-Crafts Retreat at the Spread Eagle Hotel in Jedburgh from 18 – 21 May 2007.

The residential retreat will include:
  • a full day workshop in either backstrap weaving or patchwork knitting
  • a Borders Banquet and introduction to the textile history of the area
  • a trip to the excellent Woolly Ewe wool shop in Kelso
  • and plenty of socialising.

The Spread Eagle Hotel, on the High Street in Jedburgh, dates from around 1450 and has been licensed since 1604, making it Scotland's oldest continually-licensed hotel.

For information, or to book, please contact Lorna:
Tel: 01835 862 870
E: info@spreadeaglejedburgh.co.uk

A brochure can be downloaded from:

NB. Non-residential and two-day places are available: please ask for details.

Sneak Preview:
Here's what I've been working on, and some of Janis' weaving....

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Very pleased with this one!

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Not quite so happy with the way I got the colours balanced here. Ah well, live and learn.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
From Janis of Flight Weaving who will be leading the other workshop.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Thank you!

for all your good wishes over the Christmas and New Year period. It's really lovely to hear from you all!

On Thursday I scuttled off to Glasgow to do some shopping. Ostensibly it was a trip to buy fabric for the corridor window curtains at the Cotton Print Warehouse in Govan, but I snuck in a meetup with the folks from Pattern Review and some shopping for me.

We met up at Miss Cranston's Tearooms on Gordon Street, and had a lovely few hours of chat and scoffing/guzzling.

Then AJ and I went off to Remnant Kings and I did some more shopping!

My real scoop, however, was at the Cotton Print Warehouse, where I found this lovely stuff for £15.99/m with 20% off. 2.5m is mine!

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I will, eventually, make a jacket, I think.

Is ongoing, but I'm working on the teaching stuff for the Fibre-Crafts Retreat in May, so you're not going to see it until the advertising is finished. This week, I hope....

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year!

The tradition in Scotland is to start the year as you would wish it to continue:
we were in the pub with a lovely group of people, drinks in hand, and money in the till.

That'll do!

I hope you have a happy, healthy and wealthy 2007.