Thursday, 29 May 2008


It always amazes me in the Uk how we/they (bit confusing living on an island, identity crisis) are constantly surprised when it snows in winter. Yes it snows, because of where the UK is positioned in the Nothern Hemisphere. It's basic geography, not complex now get a (snow) grip. So why the constant gasps and worse the lack of gritters on the roads, salted areas and plan of action in place before we get the pretty damp white stuff! Why am I banging on about this? No reason apart form a vague connection to my real gripe today, Island supplies during TT.

Blah Blah, the TT for those that don't know is the oldest motorbike Road Races in the world. They take part here. This means this tiny island swells to giantic visiting human proportions. Sadly however island supplies don't. Like the snow, the TT occurs each year. So why aren't we prepared. Suddenly the supermarkets become like a war torn outpost. Locals buying 10 loaves of bread a time on day one. It 's only for a bloody week. As for home delivery, no chance. That would involve using the roads that the TT doesn't. Again not complicated, you don't need sat/nav, it's the opposing roads to the ones used, you dummies, ie not the Mountain road. So Shoprite I had better find full shelves tomorrrow or else you are getting it with both (blog) barrels.

The TT has eaten shot and left. That then, inhabitants of bloggosphere out there( we all know I'm out there!) has been the absence of malice(oh smug of smugness, but was puntastic.) of the hazy purple one who is now running up that hill at full throttle.

Another poorly siskin for your viewing pleasure.

Last seen trying to hitch a lift off the island and move to a country that does not have a food supply problem.

Tuesday, 13 May 2008


Euromanx, the sorry excuse of a flight company ceased being as of last friday. Claiming high rises in fuel charges and mounting debts as the main reasons. Duh! Who hasn't been affected by rising fuel costs. Perleeeze spare me the sob story. Bad manangement, as usual is the likely culprit. The famous Manx procrastination, or as they so quaintly term it "time enough" came to the fore yet again. Sticking your head in the sand like the proverbial ostrich, and neglecting to pay the other businesses Euromanx were dealing with was always going to result in the collapse of this shoddy outfit anyway. Good riddance to a complete waste of (air) space. My thoughts are with the poor buggers who duly turned up for work , to be shown the door. No prior warning given. It takes forever to get another job on the island. The very least they could of done was forewarn the staff of the likely outcome!

Going off at yet another tangent( non sequeters and typos at the ready Lola,LOLA LIFE you are quite right) brings me to Ramsey Swimming Pool. Yes we do have some form of entertainment, besides pubs( the ratio of pubs to residents is disproportionaDte), well we do at the moment. We presently have a perfectly good swimming baths and large cheap and cheerful cafe. A unobtrusive building tucked away at the far side of town, accessible to all, adequate parking prime location overlooking the sea. Why the hell then are they tearing it down to build another one!

We need and requested a cimema. Obviously the typo went through that we need a new swimming pool. Where then is this to be? Demolish the old and rebuild because it's the perfect location. Oh no, that would be sensible. No the new shiny sterile building is to be built next to residential flats over the bridge. Why is this a problem. A whole host of reasons. Lack of parking, it's a residential area it's going to disturb the migrating birds and the clincher it's over the bridge. You're not getting this are you? You think the Boo has finally lost all rhyme and reason of the plot banging on and rocking backwards and forwards, dribbling and repeating obsessively it's over the bridge.

The reason it's the worst idea in the world(ok there are some marginally worse ones) is that this is the bridge that at ceratin times of the day cannot be accesed. It's called the Ramsey Swing bridge for a reason. It swings out to let the tall ships and boats through about 4 times a day, thus preventing car/pedestrian access at these times for up to 30mins. So bang goes the kiddies swimming lessons for starters. Also the early morning workers swim, the ladies early swim. Don't even get me started on the poor old dears who can just about struggle to waddle to the baths now. Don't think they want to be huddled on a bridge for the 30 mins in the bracing winds and high tides. Disabled access anyone? Wheelchairs can do without the extra hike and the indignity of being stuck on the bridge for eons at at time. Not everyone wants or is capable of going the long away round, through town and over the main road with traffic lights that are a law until themselves. Accidents will happen, and I will say I told you so.

Ooh that was good. Dying to do this one but I have had laptop woes that have prevented me monopolizing anyones pc to do the mega rant. Back on track now, so this demonic blog will continue apace.

The photo is of the cheeky cat who came looking for birds a few weeks ago. He found a jug of coldwater instead and hasn't been back since.

Last seen heading out of town, rather than be stuck on the bridge trying to decipher what the cryptic traffic lights are trying to signal. Why did the wallaby cross the road? To go swimming of course.

Monday, 12 May 2008


I know Ramsey and the Isle Of Man in genreral is basking in glorious sunshine, so hell I should be happy a pink fluffy bunny. Well not quite. Firstly I don't do pink, despite a few of those pink tinged Niarbyl images, more accident than design, it's just not my colour. Bunnies are quite frankly cute, but ultimately dumb animals, and again not a genre I fall into. So we have established I am enjoying the sunshine, but not in a fluffy( I can be fluffy, but with talons) girly pink Peter rabbit kind of way. So what on earth is wrong now?

Well for starters it's the title. Bear with me on this, it will make sense. Right, the song goes "the sun has got his hat on hip hip hip hooray, the sun has got his hat on and is coming out to play." Look, if the sun had his hat on, it would cast a shadow across the land, therefore no glorious sunshine to bask in and I or he/she/ it for that matter certainly wouldn't be out to play. Surely the song should substitute the word hat for sunglasses. Now that would make pefectly logical pragmatic Vulcan sense. Your thoughts please, of which I will discount on the grounds I am always right.

The other main bugbear, which I am still steeling myself for a verbal onslaught this week is Euromanx. No, means nothing to you, but they were one of the few flight operators actually flying to mainland Europe from the island have just gone bellyup. More on that as and when I find out the "Skeet", which is Manx for gossip. Basically though loads of Manxies were stranded abroad. Not all bad then. One more thing not to feature on my other blog.

By the way the Politics show remebered they had a wbsite this week and actually mentioned Barker and featured his cartoon. Here's the link, if you want a peek, it's the called The Brown Stuff. BARKER GALLERY BBC

As it's so sunny, I decided we needed a winter shot today. This was last years 2 day snow flurry.

Bad news folks. The wallaby is stranded somewhere in France awaiting the next available flight with any airline, well any airline that accepts fee playing wallabies.

Monday, 5 May 2008


I know it's been a few days again, or should that be several if you want to get all technical with the machinations of the english language. If it's not cones hampering my way( the evidence is on the other blog), supermarkets not replenishing goods or kamikaze birds throwing themselves into the patio windows, it's now the turn of photobox to complicate my life.

I've been using photobox along with imagekind to sell my work. Lots of reasons but lets just say logistically its the best option for worldwide domination, when you live on an island. The good news is they have closed their books to new professionals. Yippee! The bad is, they have changed to a new sleeker website. Whoopee doo! Put the champers glass down. Never that simple. Basically I now straddle two sites (not in the literal sense, that would be too painful) the old and the new link, which is confusing to customers. They have also lost/misplaced 2008 sales.Perhaps a lawsuit winging their way will spur them on to find said sales pretty sharpish.

Well you know I love too complain, so yes they have had it with both barrels, and still getting it. New improved site my derriere! It was perfectly hunky dory before, they used to be heroes, but no more golden years with them. We may have to part company unless they get their act together. Have you ever noticed when something is new and improved it's gobbly gook for we have made a mess. Terminal 5 Heathrow. I rest my (suit) case.

The photo is another from the nature reserve. I must take 200 a week here, and they are all so different. Not as moody as some I've used for skywatch, but not bad.

Lost somewhere in the ether betwixt parallel photobox sites.

Wednesday, 30 April 2008


Actually, that should be "Notes from small island that think it's big." Small island syndrome. Akin to a Napoleon little man complex, but applied to countries. Do you want further proof that my comparisons are correct. Cats. Remember those powerful little men who invade countries, Napoleon, Hitler and Tom Cruise. Ok, not Tom Cruise he has cuban heels. If only the other two had discovered cuban heels, but I digress cats wasn't it?

Well you know the old chestnut about little men dictactors having the cat phobia, well I think the island does too. Take the Manx cat. It's a tailess cat. I mean only the island that has a three legged flag could produce a tailess cat, and yes some islanders are wary of them. So you see, little dictators persuing world domination, but fear the kitty cat and little island persuing financial industry world domination, but fear of the kitty cat. I rest my case.

It's been a busy old time lately. I took my eye off the ball for a wee while and the wallaby left the island, and the cones moved in closer. I now have the photographic evidence of the cone infestation. Quick, call in Mulder and Scully, it's an x file.

One more thing. This blog isn't supposed to make sense, it's light hearted, tongue in cheek, ranting and raving of my far too clever for her own good alter ego. So please newbies, don't be snippy. You have to admit the Tom Cruise gag was good. Just click and your'e away from the nasty blog.

Kidnapped by aliens, rumour has it. Remember folks The truth is out there!

Tuesday, 22 April 2008


As a nubie blogger the Meme game is a new phenomena to me. When I was recently tagged(not at all painful) I thought I had better check this neme lark out. Quite a harmless online game of tic/your'e it/tig that has several different formats. This particular one being meme your memoir in 6 words. Not at all easy for someone like me, who uses far too many. Ahem.

So the rules(I am not good with rules)
  1. Write your own six word memoir.
  2. Post it on your blog; include a visual illustration if you'd like.
  3. Link to the person that tagged you in your post, and to the original post if possible.
  4. Tag at least five more blogs with links.
  5. Leave a comment on the tagged blogs with an invitation to play!
So, the person who kindly tagged me is the lovely Gerald of HYDE DAILY PHOTO
to name one of his many interesting and varied blogs.

Receivers of the Meme

1.For her wonderful book reviews, a true wordsmith, this will amuse her APLOMB
2.For lovingly written music reviews that shoud be read JAMJARSUPERSTAR
3For constantly pushing herself in the running world and getting my humour LILY
4.For being a blogger amongst bloggers with some really good insights into life FAIZAL
5.For very individual scary photography, and wittty posts TOM FOOLERY

So receivers, it's not compulsary. Ignore, play along, forget about or dither, over to you. I'm going to suggest at least one of you may have previously done one of these and is probaly getting very bored with them now.

Oh Mine. I was hoping you'd let me get away with it.

"Perpetually confused being a cynical optimist"

Tomorrow of course it would be six entirely different words, for tomorrow is another day. Five words.

Sunday, 20 April 2008


The eagle eyed(no that bird pun wasn't intened) may have noticed that this photo is also on my daily blog. Now I do usually try and have differing ones, but the bloody files have gone walkabout and well, I can't access anything new. So all the other photos I have taken in Raw are lurking somewhere mysteriously on my PC. Why they would run away undercover of older files I don't know. That has been the week in general though, hence my absence.

I get one post done, nip over to this blog, but no, server down. Then MY LAPTOP JUST KEEPS MISBEHAVING. It keeps going to sleep. Goodnight, just going to standby. Then it's the hiding of files. I have obviously done some heinous deed towards it I am unaware of, but for the sweet life of me I have no notion of what that would be. It's being well very Manx. No you don't want to work, there's time enough, I'm going to sleep. Er, no you are not. You are my laptop, now do as you are told or else I will feed you to the cones.

Oh yes, before I go, or my narcoleptic laptop passes out I have been dared to do something a little mad when the TT is on. Get a T. shirt with one of my photos on with my website details printed and wear it, sort of free advertising for my sales site. Should be fun. Epecially if I could get on one of the TV channels covering it, just to wave to you all.

The photo is the baby cormorant of the one I photographed earlier this year. Check out my other blog for more info and semsible wrting. RAMSEY DAILY PHOTO

Trying to get a flight anywhere off the island when TT is on. Motorbikes and wallabies don't mix.

Tuesday, 15 April 2008


They are back! Just when I thought it was safe to venture further afield than Ramsey. You know what I'm refering to don't you? Those damned cones! Yes ladies, gentleman and wallabies, the killer cones of the Isle of Man are back, and this time it's war.

It's not just Laxey now. There seems to be an infestation(not sure what the collective noun should be) of cones running the length of the coastal road from the Hairpin(part of the TT course) to Laxey. It doesn't end there is either. Leaving Laxey onto Onchan and into Douglas... Cones.

A new terror is upon us now, the "Town Cones." These are the specialist group. Highly adept at disguising themselves as harmless objects guarding manhole covers. Oh no, beware this particular cone. Today I saw one lurking in an empty shop window. Empty apart from this lone cone. How did a cone get into an empty locked shop, and why? So be on your guard against the evil that is as pointy as a witches hat, as orange as the sunniest sun and as plastic as well, a cone.

Today I have a T.T. photo. It's 2006, Sidecar race. I cropped it a little differently to how I normally would so you can see some elusive locals. Guess where they are watching the action from, the pub called the Swan, the one where I was a member of the Quiz team.

Rounding up those cones before the tourists get here.

Saturday, 12 April 2008


There is a lovely, quaint, sweet saying about jobs to be done by the islanders. The saying, and i'm not going to attempt the Manx, is called " time enough." I know, that's it. Not exactly groundbreaking is it? Not the earth shattering verbal gymnastics you have come to expect here (why use one word when you can use 25 say I) is it. I have another saying, well word for it. Not Manx but plain English. Procrastination.

Try getting a little man in to do any household job here. We may, or may not, have a damp problem. We certainly have something very strange under one particular kitchen tile. We need expert advice.Time enough we are told, time enough. We will get round to you. We will give you our opinion/diagnosis soon. Time enough. We will at some point repair/ resurface/ renovate. Time enough.

In the meantime however, I am slowly tearing my hair out at this time enough business. I may, afterall, be cultivating something quite nasty under the kitchen tile. One shudders to think. Time enough, procrastination, or just plain lazy. Subject to interpretation as always, like everything Manx.

I have decided that I do suffer from procrastination to a certain degree. It's called playing on my pc when I should be doing far more important things instead, like my tax return.

The photo. Top of a lighthouse, one at the Point Of Ayre. For my own amusement this photo seemed appropriate. Virginia Wolfe, depression, procrastination, modern day pychosis. Well it makes sense to me.

Comtemplating why a wallaby needs watching.

Wednesday, 9 April 2008


I'm on the bus, minding my own business, got the ipod on, staring into a faceless void of coastal sea when it happens. Do my eyes deceive me or is that the Ramsey to Douglas tram train I see along side of us. I do believe it is. Oh Happy Day!Joy To The World! Hallelujah, Praise the .... Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat! it's stopping at Laxey.

So, almost, not quite a monumental day, the Boo a happy bunny. I could have shown you pictures of it in Ramsey, with Mrs H. Brew and the grandkids. I could have have taken photographs from the train, as it cuts through the mountains. As it takes in those little one horse towns, fights it's way through the hammer horror rolling mist, passing the escaped wallaby(you never know), I could have been a contender..... Oh that's going off at a decidedly different tangent.

Manx Electric Railway, bunch of numpties.Are you trying to kill the town off altogether.We have tourist too. We still have the odd larger sized business.The excuse that this particular stretch of the track, (conveniently) is suddenly a sad state of affairs, and needs urgent repairs, year long repairs is just bull. It's not the Forth Bridge, it's a Thomas The Tank Engine, baby sized railtrack.It's a month tops, now sort it.

Rant done. The pic was last april, and the lovely pink buliding is the Police Station. It's a drab cream now. I do miss the baby pink toytown station, such a calming effect on criminals.

Doing hard labour, back on the chain gang, along the laxey part of the railway.

Tuesday, 8 April 2008


Obviously I speak another language, and it wouldn't happen to be Manx. I was asked today why I upload my photos I should be selling. Now, I have no problems with answering this. However I do take exception to the manner in which the question was asked. It appears I am abnormal because I choose to vent my spleen on the one hand and display a pretty picture with it, especially when I turned my back on the sensible bank in order to become a photographer, you know one of those people that sells what they snap.

So maybe Mrs nosey at shopshite, you have partially answered your own question. I vent my spleen, because of idiots like you, who are bound by the confines of their job, and are afraid to put their head above the parapet and been seen to be themselves. Or perhaps you actually have nothing else to offer the world so you, and many like you, sneer at others who choose to communicate with the world ouside their own sphere.

I offer a daily( 2 ) photo for free, beacuse I can, I want to, I enjoy. They are not exactly my high res, biggies, those are the sales ones, you dummy mrs shopshite. In return, I get to have a rant(therapy) get to see other countries via photos, learn of other cultures via blogging, the wonders of other people's hobbies, to laugh, I could go on So Mrs one dimentional, when you got to bed tonight, what will you have learnt today?

Another sunset, I know, but it's just there on my doorstep, and each night the light is so different. What's a girl to do. I'm altruistic to a point, but a bit like sex, sunsets sell.

considering going travelling after seeing everyone else's wonderful countries.

Monday, 7 April 2008


It may aswell be a cattle prod, my camera that is. Following on from "Trust Me I'm A Photographer", it's still happening. Cones hold their ground, defiantly saying shoot me woman, shoot me. People however, even those laid back Manx types are reacting at the sight of a camera as if they have just had the proverbial cattle prod, inserted into the proverbial nether regions.

Surely it will hurt me more than it will hurt them? Just a fraction of their time. Me. Do they realise what I have to scarifice. Space on my card, valuable nano seconds taking it, uploading to my "oh no not more bloody photos" laptop, converting from Raw to Tif/ jpeg, filing in my image library under "supposedly human", Cropping, not cropping, colour, black and white.... Overload, Overload. You see my point though don't you? Who may I ask is gaining from the deal. I can't claim this time back. I just want to show off the good folk of the Isle of Man to the world. I could lie and tell you it's for the newspapers, then you'd be beating a path to my door.

So an old pic from last year today. Just to show we have life here. It's TT practise week, the week before the actual races, and all the bikers you see are tourist bikers, not those taking part. It's also my practise week for speeds and angles. I like this shot because it really sums up the Manx laid back way. That woman was positively dawdling, the lights had long since changed, and she nonchanlanty strolled across, oblivious to the traffic building up behind her.Wonderful.

Still waiting for the woman to cross the road.

Sunday, 6 April 2008


It's not coming home then afterall, the F.A. that is. Hand of Posh, and it was all over(thank you for concurring with me about that "none goal" Stephen) .To add insult to injury, blogger was a nightmare yesterday, along with the server here making me yes Mr Hyde, a unhappy bunny. Didn't do sensible other blog post 'til late and couldn't post anything on this the darkside at all.So Lily, you weren't the only one with posting problems. Think the gremlins are at work to undermine the blogging community.

So after the debacle of the football I was not in the mood to be disturbed. Tell that to my neighbour, and I do hope at some point you read this somewhere. You are an idiot. You are inconsiderate. You have no idea what you are doing. The silly litte man next door is buliding an extension , on a new house...for the last 6 YEARS. We have only been in a year. Drilling, hammering, tapping, breaking bricks, for 6 hours straight. The back garden resembles a buliders yard. What the hell he is doing I don't know. The extension remains the same shell it always has been. But the final straw was going out the front door to find he has dug up his own lawn to our side, where a lovely cherry tree sits, now with it's roots exposed on his side. The idiot had also dug up the dividing fence and get this, thrown it onto our lawn. Needless to say, it got thrown onto his and words were had to the effect he reinstate it or else. Why do I have to live in a nice little cul-de-sac, in a nice little semi, unfortunately attached to the semi detached brainwise D.I.Y. calamity from hell. Ps. Your wife and and 3 young boys are charming personification of politeness, you are spoilt brat that should be ashamed of yourself. The words are good morning, not grunt, or look the other way and pretend we aren't there. You imbecile.

The Tulip Pic, Peek-A-Boo was from a bunch Barker bought to console me. That and Jaffa cakes washed down with lashing of Baileys.

Digging an underground tunnel to collapse the neighbours extension and put him in it's place instead.

Friday, 4 April 2008


Tried to join Sky Watcy Friday Tonight. What a travesty that was. I can't import the widget. Tried every which way round I can, but the bloody thing is having none of it. Signed up to the linky link thing(no it really is called that), did the old copy and paste, chose all the right components etc an no, still won't bloody appear. This is bad omen for tomorrow.

I would be feeling a grumpy bunny about the above but far more important things to concern me. No am feeling all fluffy bunnykins, very excitable as my beloved West Bromwich Albion are off to Wembley tomorrow to play against some crappy team, in the semi final of the F. A Cup.

The Barker has already decided he would rather do the weekend shopping than watch this particular football match with me. He can't stand the shrieking, the flinging myself at the T. V., the constant swearing, the cheering or the tantrums depending on the result. I haven't exactly got what you call poker face. I do go a bit wild, but in my lifetime W.B.A HAVEN'T WON ANYTHING. Now, they had my pocket money for entrance fees when I was younger. I gave up dates, shopping, visits to my nan to support this bloody team. They owe me. Despite my trials and tribulations I am the eternal ( but extremely cynical) optimist so I have a dream, it's coming home and for once we will know what we're doing.

This then is my 1st official sky watch pic. Not sure about it yet myself, but uploaded it anyway as it's as fresh as a daisy., a newborn babe of a pic called painted sky. Ah.


Travelled to a parallel universe, where, I rule, W. B. A have won the cup, widgets work, and Martin Luther King is alive and well and living the dream.

Thursday, 3 April 2008


Obviously there has been no such Frankenstein type transplant. It's the chaffinch that flew into the window the other week, the one I mentioned with the siskin photo.Today is all about my barmy birds. Now, my little feathered friends I love you all dearly, you keep me sane in a mad world but, lets face it your're a bit of a nightmare aren't you?

1. Stop pooping on my washing. It's very fustrating to find your birdy dropping on my freshly washed clothes. It's not big and it's not clever!

2.Learn to share. You know there is a never ending supply, so queue in an orderly fashion, and then peck away.

3.Sort out your air traffic control. It's a window, not a drive through mcbirdies. I will not always be around(or Barker) to rescue you when you've flung yourself headlong at the window, fall onto your back and can't get onto your feet. I haven't really got 3 hours to sit with you until you come round and then run round the garden with you teaching you how to fly. Besides that, it's hard trying to explain to the neighbours, er yes it's another poorly bird, too coincidental for them.

4.Stop having mass orgies in my garden. Really, the noise. Chasing each other, groups, not practising safe sex, promiscuity. Please I'm going all "NIMBY"with you birds, Not In My BackYard.

5. Last but not least, stay bloddy still when I'm trying to photograph you, yes you mr grey pied wagtail, it's not a race, chill out.

So the pic is me and my poorly chaffinch, the one that wouldn't fly off, the one that I was running up and dwon the garden with flaping my arms to encourage him to fly. So get the tripod out, set the pic up, and click the timer.


Warding off those naughty cats without bells who try and kill my pretties, my birds. It suits him working outdoors as he can have a fag anytime.

Wednesday, 2 April 2008


Ok. Hands up who thought yesterdays post was an April Fool. Only partially. Barker did upload a cartoon of Mugabe, and he did get lots of traffic from government buildings in Zimbabwe. He did get the odd disturbing email, but on the whole we are quite safe. Lets face it Google earth feejit thinks we live in Douglas, Lanarkshire, Scotland, so doubt if Mugabe can find us. Apparently he has a small problem of an election result to consider. Here's hoping it's not in his favour.

So, my other blog, the Ramsey Daily Photo is doing well. That is it's doing well online around the world. What of the island. Well, I'm out and about in Ramsey, trawling the high street for images with the big camera with the big lens, stopping to snap varying pieces that catch my eye. So why is this considered abnormal behaviour. I'm sure the good folk of Ramsey still believe that if I snap them, I may be stealing their soul or something. Good grief people, do you not want to be immortalized on the net for posterity. Something to tell the grandkids, all around the world, that was me when I was younger picking my nose, breaking wind while having a fag outside the pub. That was me letting my dog crap everywhere and not scooping up the poop. That was me falling out the pub and dropping my chips, and shoving the chip paper into the nearest shop letterbox.

So to Ramsey, and be warned tomorrow Douglas. The camera isn't the devils tool and I am not one of his minions. If you can upload your idiotic antics onto You Tube for all the world to see then surely when I'm photographing, that ineresting angle, a humourous, sign or another sunset and you just happen to be wolfing down your ice cream in shot, then in the scheme of all worldy things, it's not so bad is it.

Todays pic is a solitary narcissus. I put a matt black card behind it( no light reflection then) and snapped away. I suppose that would account for why some people consider this photography lark of mine a bit nuts. Well all I'll say is if being able to wander about in the fresh air, with no timetable to adhere to as opposed to being stuck back in a darkened airless vault in the bank, nuts then I am, a fully paid up member of the barmy brigade. Job satisfaction, second to none.

He's gone to ground in fear that I might capture his image with that pint in his hand. Wallabies are supposed to be teetotal.

Tuesday, 1 April 2008


If I stop this post mid flow it means I have been dragged out of here off the Island, and possibly en route to Zimbabwe. The "Barker" is in hiding as it is, travelling between safe houses, (well relatively safe houses), trying to email messages out for an emergency airlift.

First though the smoking ban. The streets of Ramsey were today littered with smokers huddled on doorsteps of pubs and workplaces with upturned collars. Obviously the reason they didn't introduce it mid winter as islanders would have been very reluctant to go outside. So far so good.

Back to the emergency airlift. The "Barker" thought it would be a good idea to upload a cartoon he's drawn of Mugabe's head on a set of crossbones with the words "DANGER! ELECTION RESULTS AHEAD." It's on his Barker Bites Back blog( see links). I would have uploaded it here but we think it's best if i stick to rants, tangents, photos, etc. why?Becuse today his blog suddenly went a bit mad with hits in Zimabwe and neighbouing countries. So a little check on Google earth pinpointed where, and oh dear it may be the man himself, but certainly Government buidings. He's also had some very worrying(not threatening yet, but certainly disconcerting) emails about it from some very strange sources.

Political cartooning can be a dangerous occupaition, and hate mail, obnoxious comments go with the territory, but this is altogether unchartered waters for us. So seriously folks Babooshka and Barker may be whisked away for our own safety for a wee while. If so can I please request the South of France as my hideaway. You can check the cartoon out yourself at the "Barker Bites Back " link, if you dare.

The photo. It's part of Peel Castle, at er Peel. I had the setting on for cloudy even though it was a sunny day as you can sometimes get very vibrant rich colurs and textures this way, hence the depth of colour. Doen't always work, but when it does it's very pleasing on the eye.

Disgused as a cone and infiltrating Laxey cones and claiming not to be the Wallaby that features on this blog or knows of any Political Cartoonist. PS. Mr Mugabe you don't scare me, it's time for you to GO!

Monday, 31 March 2008


They're back. Just when I thought it was safe to venture out to Laxey, the Killer Cones have re appeared. It seems planet Coneworld has been annexed to the island, so they are all now officailly Manx, no permits required. This would account for the fact that they had multiplied rapidly since last week and even have humans dressed in yellow coats assisting them in their island takeover. Obviously I am heading up the resistance as we speak. I know Resistance is futile.

I do have another theory about the cones. Late as usual with policies, the Isle of Man , today has officially banned smoking, in indooor work/public places. Now, as a former smoker(not a born again non smoker) I welcome the decision on health grounds, but dreading what the fag smog and aroma were masking. B. O. for one. Then there's beer vomit from the idiot who never knows when to stop. The perfumes and hairsparys all mingling in a couldron into a heady mix a skunk would be ashamed of. Time will tell.

So my Theory is they have been drafted in as community police, in case we have any incidents of fag rage. As they are immune to the addictions of fags, they are perfect for the job. Well they're not guarding the roads very well, I got past again.

Another yawn sunset, called yawn, hint of pink. I do these daily, so I am being lazy. No sunset tomorrow.


Having a crafty fag under a manhole cover, behind the train sheds.

Sunday, 30 March 2008


Yippe, it's officially British Summer Time. The clocks went forward an hour, which of course I forgot and wondering who had pinched my missing hour this morning. Now not exactly like being jet lagged now is it, but always takes me a day or two to climatise. It was lighter an hour later than usual, which meant the lovely birds who I feed to keep sane, were still around and ravenous.

Now don't get me wrong, I love my little array of feathered friends, the siskins, goldfinches, chaffinchs any so much more. Even though the little buggers, just turn up and sit on the fence outside the kitchen window, staring at me manically until i replenish the feeders and water, I love them all. However they frighten the bloody life out of me and here's why.

When the sun shines( rare but it happens) they fly into the kitchen window, and plop onto the ground. So first sunny day, a mad little male siskin, flew straight into the window. So bird nurse Babooshka of Ramsey, to the rescue. Have to pick the little buggers up as gently as you can, put then up the right way and basically sit with them, fending off sparrowhawks and pussy cats( and tail less manx cats) until some three hours later they fly off. Which he did. Had a chaffinch once that basically refused to fly away. Just hopped on my hand. I spent two hours wandering round the garden, like the bird woman of Alcatraz, talking to this bird and waving my arm around running in spurts to try and coax him to fly away. No idea what the neighbours thought. They think we're bananas anyway. Eventually he flew off without so much as a thank you tweet. Not exactly well mannered our graden birds, very manx.( I couldn't resist that one)

So today pic, is er todays pic of the siskin. What a grumpy little bugger he was too. Well I suppose I would be too if I'd been flinging myself headlong into windows. Again not a thank you tweet.


Slept in due to the clocks going forward, with a raging hangover.

Saturday, 29 March 2008


OK. It's saturday, the southern comfort is out( well out the bottle but wending it's merry little way into merry little me) and I'm about to publish a post that contains a less than flattering image of a Top Gear presenter, that Barker has just rattled off the pen.

Naughty, naughty, very naughty Jeremy Clarkson. Well it seems he's not so naughty afterall. Well as a celebrity( an Isle of Man resident too) he's deemed a good boy. The rest of us of course would be hung drawn and quartered for using a moblie/cell phone whilst driving, not a hands free one. I'm talking about an all singing all dancing hold me tightly buddy while I bark down the line at you phone with one hand only on the wheel one. Ooh the nerve!

After the Daily Mirror printed a photograph taken by fellow drivers, clearly showing him holding the phone whilst driving, he was questioned by the police. Guess what.?The police have said there is not enough evidence to prosecute. Translation of this means- "There is plenty of photographic evidence, but as Mr Clarkson is a celebrity, and not a member of the great unwashed general public, shall we just er forget about it, along with Kate Moss and Pete Doherty's litte cocaine habits."

So egged on by Babooshka, Barker duly knocked up this little satirical cartoon, which egged on by Barker I have uploaded. Oh dear.

Oh, the anti photoblog photo. It's a TT one, from 2006. Pierre mentioning sidecars made me think about theses pics. Back to the pic(going off at far too many tangents tonight). The rider is Adrian Archibald. Don't attempt to photograph whizzing motorbikes at well over a hundred unless you have a decent speed setting on your camera. Try and keep the ISO low 200 to 4OO. Blah Blah. Sorry drifting into photo tip nonsense, that's the other blog.


Has been arrested on grounds of being drunk and disorderly, but sure gis celebrity status here in this blog means he will not be prosecuted.

Friday, 28 March 2008


Firstly an apology to those of you that have strayed here from my other blog the sane "Isle Of Man Daily Photo." You have entered the dark side, the warped recesses of my killer cones, escaped wallabies demented mind we over here refer to as "Purple Haze", the darkroom of photography. Linger at your peril. I urge you not to read the missives, just concentrate on the "pretty pictures" before you make your escape and you should exit ok. You may be plagued with the odd nightmare for a few days about wild wallabies, wearing killer cones, being stranded taxi less or riding a one way railway to oblivion, but apart from that you should be ok. To the rest of you, you should know better by now!

Had to go to the bank again today, you know the one i used to work at, the one I got locked in during the powercut. Horrible. So the gossip is, my old Line Manager has be seconded to Gilbrater(lucky boy), my ex playmate colleagues has been kicked up to the dreaded "4th" floor and the whole department I worked in, now defunct. It's been assimilated(very Borg) into another department, a departement Babooshka would not have been a happy bunny in. But hey, there's a job there if Iwant it, towing the corporate line, nodding donkey, work set you free job if this photography lark doesn't work out. Er, think that's a NO and the offence is intended.

Todays pic was taken at Niarbyl and entitled "Pink Moon." Yes, I know it's not moonlight glistening, but the sun shining I'm not that barking, but I am a huge Nick Drake fan. I know, if you don't know who he is that particular piece of info is, useless at best, confusing at worst. Pink Moon is one of his songs, I am rather partial too( it's the album title also) the hues in the pic have a subtle pink tone and it was playing on my ipod at the time. Besides that, it's my image so I can title it "blueberries in arsenic" if I so choose. And you can take that to the bank.


Has taken my old job at the bank, subject to him securing a work permit.

Thursday, 27 March 2008


The killer cones have somewhat disappeared. Obviously they have all been rounded up, those without permits sent back to the mainland, or in fact from Planet Coneworld their natural home, either way we are cone free.

Been quite a blue sky day, after the initial drizzly start. Spent some quality time with the camera. Had to spoil it somehow, shopping.

Shoprite is the local supermarket, but as of today I shall refer to it as Shopshite. Since christmas they seemed not have bothered to keep a rolling stock. By monday basics like coffee, bread and milk have gone by lunchtime, not to be replenished until thursday. Hello, Shopshite, these are staple products! You buy bread and milk locally, in fact Ramsey Bakery is directly opposite, so no excuses about transportation. No ferries cancelled due to a raindrop, or no flights delayed due to a butterfly flapping his wings twice. While i'm on the subject, why the hike in prices on these items( and locally produced meat)? No excuses about , The Budget, global wheat shortage, or the farmers are getting a bigger cut. Just not true, not here anyway.

Stock up, shape up, stop massaging the prices several times a week. We have this marvellous new invention now called the internet and guess what we have a hotline to Tesco's online home delivery.

Another pic of Mooragh lake, Mooragh Park. Taken this shot several times before, but always best when the water is breeze free, gives the lake a glassy sheen with perfect reflectons. I refer to these houses as the Dolls houses, if you look closely they are all pastel shades, and superbly twee. Please don't be offended if you live there, it's called a compliment, albiet in an ironic way.


Still searching the shelves at shopshite for a pint of milk.

Wednesday, 26 March 2008


There are basically 3 roads to Douglas, the capitol of the island. The mountain road, the coastal road and the all the bloody way round Peel and every Hillbilly, Hammer Horror, One Horse town in between road. Obviously the last is to be avoided like the plague, unless of course you are a tourist, then it's called the scenic route.

So today i need to go to Douglas, and of course the bus has the monumental decision, mountain or coast. Two drops of rain, means the mountains out and the coast is in. So far so good, until we get to Laxey, then it's attack of the Killer Cones. I swear there are more cones on the island than people. Where do they live when not in use. Are they imported from across, and if so do they have a work permit. Cones that haven't lived here for 5 years, or not Manx born cones would need a work permit, so i suspect they are here illegally as work permits aren't issued willy nilly.

I digress( me never). It's that time of year again, just before the Laxey blues festival, and The TT Road Races shortly after, the powers that be who control the finances, re surface the roads and cause utter chaos. Why? Each year at this time, just before the tax year ends, they need to spend the excess money left, otherwise they won't receive the same budget again, but receive a lesser budget instead. So good financial planning isn't rewarded, the roads have money wasted on them that should go to say, ooh lets be radical HOUSING, EDUCATION, HEALTH and a whole island transport system comes to a standstill. Uk mainland is just as guilty.

Today the photo is the "Seal In Peel." It's so fresh, I've not even uploaded it to my serious, sales sites. Peel is great place for seals as they come right up to the shoreline where the fishermen are to compete with them for the fish. Yes the sea really is that green there, and even I am swoon over it.


Found my other blog quite sedate, and is returning if he can fight off those killer cones hampering his route.

Tuesday, 25 March 2008


Today I have gone over to the lightside. I have created a sensible, straight down the line, whinge less, irony free zone, "Isle Of Man Daily Photo" blog. It's the blog i originally set out to do, but got sidetracked with venting my spleen on this one. It is even on a humourless, dispassionate white background. It will have trite titles, real photo info, you know the technical stuff, like what ISO was used and shutter speed. All the boring bits i can't be bothered with here.

It also means i can do any old arty farty, social photography( ooh look at the locals aren't they quaint) black and white, just stepped out the house and thought this pile of dog poo looked really interesting in a conceptual art kind of a way photo i like. Hey, so long as it's a daily photo( who i wonder will check the date, will someone be secretly spying on me form the manx mafia) of the little ole town that I live in, then that will suffice. Apparently though i have already broken the the ethos of the daily pic, (fight club, first rule of fight club, there are no rules in fight club) by setting it in the whole island, rather than the town of Ramsey. Not very good with rules.

So the 2 blogs will run simultaneoulsy in a schizoid kind of way. God help the veiwer who strays from the path of the good blog, worthy, pure photo of photos, to the mad, bad and dangerous blog on the darkside of purple haze.

Queens Pier Photo today. It's seen better days neglected, and needs restoring to it's former glory, but of course the money will go elsewhere. Will have to have a rant on this one.


Well that's loyalty for you? He has defected to my other blog.

Monday, 24 March 2008


No, not in Kansas or Oz for that matter. No, no tornado's sweeping the house away and dropping atop the Wicked Witch( of the West Midlands in my case) West. No despite the stormy clouds you see above , still in the Isle Of Man.

This brings me to a pet hate of mine(what another one i hear you cry) that Pierre inadvertantly mentioning the Steam Packet in the comments box has irked me today. The price of leaving the Island. Not forever , just a vacation/holiday.

I'll get round to the steam packet next time they bug me, but for now it's flights. A flight across, 20 mins in the air to Blackpool, England last flight cost £150 plus. Ridiculous. We are being held to ransome here, when we want to get off the island, and what about tourists. Do we want them? The answer is yes,yes, yes, then do something to encourage more visitors. Stop relying on events like the TT Road Races that have a loyal following and bikers will come whatever the cost. Stop ripping visitors off, and us Island folk that occasionally, when cabin fever strikes need to escape to Shopping Malls or Sun drenched beaches that don't have a creepy flag with 3 legs waving at them.

Ooh i do like a rant. Today's pic( called"Cloudbusting") was literally at the back of my house on the nature reserve. Barker and i were dodging the rain. Back and forth into the house, so in the end we had a hike round the nature reserve looking for birds and rabbits(bugger all)to photograph. Instead you got the view towards the mountains, with the glistening sun, and the rolling clouds. 2 minutes later, it was pissing it down and i was back in the house whinging about it always bloody raining. Need a holiday, but can't afford a second mortgage for the flight.


Having flying lessons as it's cheaper to charter a plane , than book a flight.

Sunday, 23 March 2008


Happy Easter everyone. Have we had lots of chocky eggs? Not much of a chocolate fan myself, i know, a woman who doesn't go ga ga over the sweet stuff, but crisps ooh that's another story. When it comes to pringles I don't understand the word share! I can eat a full pack in one sittiing and then roll around in agony complaining i have bad guts and swear i have no idea why. Back to the chocs, had a baileys easter egg, with minature baileys truffles. Yummy, but not as yummy as a bag of crsips.

Somehow managed to negelct my blog yesterday. Think i may have been kidnapped by aliens (or the manx mafia) and had the memory of the event erased. Time just slipped by in front of the tv and re organising photos. Can't even blame it on alcohol, now that is worrying. So saturday came and went and sunday has visisted and to be honest the photo reorganization has monopolised my time yet again. Fotunately this means i haven't been traumatised, by powercuts, bank false imprisonments, Thomas the Tank Engine(as i now refer to manx railway) being derailed or taxis failing to arrive leaving me stranded with eight bags of shopping in the middle of Ramsey. (see earlier blogs if this has confused you) No, my blood pressure is down, I am at one with The isle of Man, and even a the cormorant posed for a pic. Somewhere in the world, someone has had a shit day on my behalf. Sure the equilibrium will be restored tomorrow and the mad world of Babooska will resume.

Today's pic is entiled "cormorant in flight." Yes it's unimaginately titled what you see is what youb get with this one. I have been chasing this bloody bird, my nemesis for months now, and today, my perfect world day, there he was, and so was I.


He too has had a lost weekend in Blackpool

Friday, 21 March 2008


It all started so well. Barker and I both off, no photography today, no cartoon for the BBC for Barker to summit this week, so we headed for the pub, The Plough, with the Flying Flynn in toe.
Hundreds of packets of crisps and several lagers( no spirits, having a spirit free day) later I discovered my beloved West Bromwich Albion, a football team I have been following since I was in the womb were playing, and it was on the pub big screen. Then it went downhill.

We drew 1-1. Bugger. Ok not a disaster,but it was a game in hand wasted. As it's Good Friday, a chippy dinner, so Barker can have his fish, and I can escape negotiating the cooker when inebriated. Then it happened. The taxi never turned up. This has happened on several occasions and today i wasn't accepting this without a fight.

So we headed on foot for home, with me on redial to the taxi firm( Island taxis to name and shame) until they answered.20 mins later some smug git answered, and he got it with both, drunken barrels. Don't upset a drunken Babooshka, it is not a pretty site. One humiliated radio controller later and I passed the phone to Barker. Having turned the controller into a gibbering wreck, Barker calmly negotiated our next move, the very next taxi we book will be a free ride. God help him if he fails to turn up, because i will be straight in the office.

Bad customer service is annoying, no service at all is intolerable. Being British. I am supposed to bite my stiff upper lip and grumble, but not complain.Well balls to that. Wake up Isle of Man services, and get with the programme. Even here we have alternatives and message to Island Taxis, I can always use Crennalls.

On a lighter note here's the pic. It's called "Still Blue", taken early evening at Mooragh Park. Photographing over water is always good because the light bounces which intensifies colours, hence the blue hue, so no need for filters. Ooh, real photography advise for a change.


He nicked my taxi.

Thursday, 20 March 2008


After months of unsucessfully trying to get my foot in the door on the island, it looks like it has finally opened and i have jammed my little high heeled boot in there before they slam it back shut again. Try as they might it's there. I've had a broken toe before, and quite prepared to get another. It's called suffering for your art or some such crap.

A bit like buses, this photography lark, nothing for ages,then they all turn up at once. Finally got a pic in the Isle of Man newspapers, who have also kindly(just in case the manx mafia are here) added my blog link. Yippee. They are also hoping to put together a Isle of Man blog directory, so all you I.O.M BLOGGERS out there contact me and i will pass your links on.

Second bit of good news is blagged my way into putting together a gallery for the BBC I.O.M website page. Putting the stuff together now. Will let you know when it goes live.

Thirdly, Barker accepted as a member of the Sayle art Gallery and we have been invited to an exhibition. So after several wines i will no doubt be be blagging my way to getting Barker artwork on the island. His BBC Barker Gallery is all well and good, but believe me it doesn't pay enough to cover the Jack Daniels Bar bill, and you all know how i love my jack and coke. Even the ice cubes cost a fortune on the island. Check out his blog too, it's under my links, "BARKER BITES BACK."Bloody good it is too!

It's pissing down here. Typical bloody British Bank Holiday weather. Ferries cancelled, no doubt flights will be delayed and the island will be on lockdown. Happy Easter eh! Pass me my easter egg and a bottle of soutern comfort someone.

Todays pic is called "morning glory." Do get some gorgeous colours when the sun is out. Ten mins later the angels are taking a leak over the island.

Stranded at ronaldway airport, but hoping to catch the next available flight to just about anywhere that's sunny.

Wednesday, 19 March 2008


No, Google Eath hasn't moved for me either? It seems I though have moved for Google Earth. Confused?Not half as much as I was to find out that I now live in Scotland. It will all make sense if you read on. As usual it's one of those you couldn't make it up things. Just happens to be me again it's happened to.

Uploaded one of those clever little maps that flags who's been visiting your blog yesterday. Today I thought i'll have a nosey and that when it happened. It came up with Doulgas. Douglas is the Capital of the Isle of Man, so ok it's not Ramsey, but close. Started to zoom in as you do, and that's when it happened, it zoomed in on Douglas, South Lanarkshire, Scotland. Now after the bank false imprisonment, power cut, and Thomas the Tank Engine running, but only one way, what i needed this week was some stability. Oh know, Google bloody Earth, have moved me(must have been when i slept. damn!) back to the UK mainland. How can it not recognise the Island. How traumatised do you think i am today so far this week, and it's only wednesday!

Obviously Google Earth have had a strongly worded email about this... check it out for yourselves. Hover and zoom in On the Isle of Man, and it's big fat blank nothing. Do you think the Manx Mafia have conspired with Google Earth and the real Photoblogs societies to obliterate me from Blogger land. Perhaps in fact i don't actually exsist and if you are reading this, it is you in fact that are mad. Ponder that.

Today's anitphotoblog pic is another of Ramsey Rugby. Very touchy feely this one, and they tell me it's a man's game. Getting to grips with thier manhood are they then,no just each others.


Google Web and Google Earth have no record of anything called a wallaby. Should they exist they will no doubt be found in Douglas, Scotland.

Tuesday, 18 March 2008


"The seagull has landed" should actually have been applied to yesterdays pic but after the bank false impriosonment( liberty taking with the truth i know) my puns weren't up ( or down depending on your viewpoint) to scratch. So today i will enlighten you as to how and when this pic was taken. Again it's a genuine pic, not a particuarly good shot, in fact it's crap technically and too dark, but it's an opportunist shot.

So, at my old house, there were these two herring gulls went into a pub. No i mean fighting in the back garden. Why they chose my garden i do not know. Tried to seperate them with a broom, and the weaker one flew into the house and proceeded to have a mad half hour flying about. Managed to shoo the other one away. By this time the gull above had decided to sit where you see him now. At this point in the proceeding i just had to take his pic, having texted Barker to tell him we had a gull in the kitchen. Now even for me this seemed in the realms of fantasy, as only so much can happen to one person, so pictorial evidence was required.

Now getting him out was another challenge in itself. More shooing with brooms until he retreated to the garden , straight behind the oil burner. More problems. He sat there for about 2 hours, came out of his own accord, flew off and left me with big pile of seagull shit as a parting gift for my trouble, and you have no idea how much a scared seagull can poo. Thus ends another one of my "it really happened, no i'm not lying, drunk or on drugs, this is just my life" tales.

Well, we are still none the wiser as to which way the train will run. No logical explanation given for the powercut. I think it might be somekind of X Files secret tagging thing they were doing. Probabaly whole island kidnapped and tagged, and we have been implanted with this false scenario of a powercut and lock in. Ok just me then?


It's not a wallaby, it's an alien with a cloaking devise, thus explaining why he is so elusive.

Monday, 17 March 2008


Happy St Patrick's Day. That's especially for my friend Micheal, or should i say "Mehall." There are so many Micheal's, that he is Mehall pronouced as if " i was standing in me hall" with a very broad generic "oirish" accent. Message to his mom. He was a very good boy and went to church. Then he was a very bad boy and went to the pub. On the plus side this means he will have to have an extra visit to confess he was at the pub on a monday night. Barker(my other half) and I only accompanied him you understand to be polite. Honest.

Very traumatising eXperience today, I got locked in a bank. No, really. An island power cut which meant lockdown. Now, having left the banking fraternity recentlty on this mad whim of "I'm going be a photographer, so long farewell you boring little jobsworths"the last thing I needed was to be imprisoned in a confined space, with the people i had been satirising on facebook, and my blog, in the very buliding i had been kicking and screaming to get out of for a year. Never keep your bank account at the bank you have just left!

Finally escaped but will now be booking my session with Dr Melfi( I believe she has a vacancy now Tony Soprano no longer requires her services) to analyse my ordeal. No doubt the power cut will all be my mother's fault and i was trying to climb back into the comfort of the womb by getting myself locked in the bank, the safety net of my old sensible job. No it was just bad luck. Or was it? You never know on this island.

Latest news on the Manx Electric Railway Society cancelling the one and only rail link between Ramsey and Laxey that i was banging on about in one of my older posts. My threats to them, well they have relented. That is to say they will be running the service, but one way. Which way i don't know, but perleeease can the see that this is just not bloody practical. Half the battle won, but the war rages on. So then do I.

My anti photoblog pic today is an obliging herring gull who I asked kindly if he would try a landing shot for me. He used his stunt double instead and i gave him a fish head as a reward. I always promised to give him a mention. I don't know, everyone's a bloody wannabe star this days.


Unfortunately still locked in the bank. He was able to run fast enough, being a wallaby he just bounced a lot. A rescue plan is underway, if my therapy is sucessful.

Sunday, 16 March 2008


Sloshed saturday so old news, sober sunday all the rage. Remebered what i was actually going to blog about yesterday, what is a photoblog? Discuss. Firstly, a big thank you to my friend Joanne who has duly supplied me with the correct name to yesterdays pic i lazily christened "Pink Blush". It is wait for it, a red "Australian Bottle Brush Plant" (latin - callistemon citrinus splendens). Many thanks Joanne, our guest expert today.

A photoblog is defined as a daily photo uploaded to a blog with a blurb or two about the pic. It can be animals, flora, travel, knitting, basically whatever you are into, tips ,camera info etc. What it can't be however is funny, ironic, irreverent, nonsensical. No po faced is the accepted format, wittisims are unacceptable. There's no room for escaped wallabies roaming round the isle of man, which inspired wallaby watch. Only sober sensible photoblogs please apply.

I have been turned down from a photoblogging index on the grounds that, "it is not seriously commited to the ethics of promoting photography." Hello are THEY serious. I couldn't be anymore serious myself. I gave up a good job in the very boring, dullard financial industry to persue photography as a living, which just about sustains me in jack daniels and pringles( ok lying again, it's jack daniels and coke with pringles) in the short term until i am master photographer of the world( well at least the isle of man) with matching income.

So this now is an anti photoblog. It is the antithsis to a phototoblog. It will contain a daily image but will now be devoid of any useful, relevent, technical "here's the science bit info." The image will bear no relation to the post( when does it anyway), in fact i may not even refer to it at all only perhaps in a subversive anarchic way. Who needs to be indexed anyway. I am a free anti photoblog, not a number.

So to todays pic. I would like to go into intricate details of night shoots, but my anti photoblog ethics will not permit this. What i am at liberty to tell you is that it is today, Ramsey Harbour, evening sunset and tritely titled "Golden Wonder."


Has gone over to the darkside and swithced to a serious photoblog. He will be back when he realises he will no longer have his own spot, but be shunted to one side as an extra. Afterall he has a staring role here and i did discover him.

Saturday, 15 March 2008



Today i have been chasing birds. Should i clarify, chasing feathered friends to photograph. As you can see by the pic above not very not very succesfully. The pic is actually quite misleading as for most of the day it was wet, wet, wet, grey, and dull. Took the image above in the one minute of sunshine we had. It's called Pink Blush. Well to be honest, i am clueless as to what the flower is actually named, so have duly entitled it Pink Blush. Quite often you will see my photographs of flora have exotic or imaginative names. Nothing to do with my surreal slant on the world, just that i am ignorant of such things. My friend Joanne the gardener will be tut tutting round about now reading this part of the blog.

I have just been reminded though that i can rattle off a latin plant names at will. This is not a party trick but goes back to our quiz days. The world of Pub Quizzing in the UK is cut throat. Ramsey has it's own quiz league, and we used to play for the Swan. Really it's just a way to fill the pubs/bars on a quiet night especially in winter. I am left with mental scars that run deep of too many nights out arguing with an opposing team who are so analally retentive that they mark you wrong on the account you didn't dot the i's in the right place or used a green pen. Feeding and chasing birds to photograph is relatively sedate, but unlike the pub quiz, it's a safe hobby. Well mostly safe, almost fell into the harbour chasing a cormorant, but apart from that it's danger free.

Well i managed to blag my way through this post after several southern comforts. Unfortunately though, completely forgotten what my original post was due to be about. No doubt i will read tomorrow and wonder why the incoherrent wafflings of quizzes and pub leagues instead of, well whatever it was i should have been posting.


Last seen geting his quiz scored verified, afterall he has a pint riding on it.

Friday, 14 March 2008


Confessions of a photographer otherwise known as "one i made earlier" would be a more accurate title. When I started this supposedly serious one a day photography blog, the intention was to highlight my photographs fo sale, tips and impart you , dear readers with a little knowledge of my adopted home, The Isle Of Man. As you can see it has descended into ramblings of a insomniac photographer who is often tilting at windmills figthing lost causes( the manx railway),who can't always due to the unforgiving weather here take her daily pic. Hence falling on the old standbys in my archive, ie a butterfly. Even with global warming it is a wee bit early for yesterdays red admiral. Today i will redress the balance to purge my guily soul, though very tongue in cheek.

Todays pic is actually wednesdays pic, which i hadn't uploaded until today. Rambling again. Originally entitled sunset glow, now it is to be known as Flaming Orange. Taken again from my friends flat( previously taken red fire sunset from here) as the night fast drawing to a close in Ramsey these wondeful orange and gold tones lit the evening sky. Peel is actually the place for the best sunsets, but occasionally we are fortunate on the east side of the island and the odd spectacular night sky can be snapped.

Tomorrow the forcast is rather gloomy, so if you see an obvious autumn/fall shot appear you will know why. The most perculiar shot I have ever taken is a seagull in my kitchen. Now that has to be seen to be believed. Not superimposed, it was sheltering from another seagull. Another story for another day.

No mad Isle of Man celebrity news today. All seem to be behaving, that is apart from my partner. Not really misbehaving just falling asleep in front of the tv snoring loudly when he is supposed to be working which i find annoying to say the least. He by the way is The BBC Political Cartoonist of The BBC Politics Show. His Cartoons can be seen each week on on the website in the Barker Gallery. You can check them out for yourself under my links, along with the link to his own blog "Barker Bites Back" which he should be updating but is spark out. Please go and comment on his blog and tell him to wake up. This would amuse me tremendoulsy and frighthen the life out of him. Obviously you can tell him how wonderful the cartoons are too, which they are.

This is my first sober friday for ages. Don't panic i haven't taken the oath, we are having "sloshed saturday" instead.


Having a quiet night in with friends, the flying pig and the pink elephant.

Thursday, 13 March 2008


As you can see from the title of my post today Babooshka( why am I refering to myself in the third person is beyond me) is not a happy bunny. In fact polite blogging society tempers the language i'd like to use. Why so irate? Read on.

Manx Electric Railway, in their wisdom( blatant irony here) have decided not to run the train from Laxey to Ramsey in the summer for the tourists anymore. This effeftively cuts off the north of the island for alternative transport. It is also mindboggling stupid not to run this when the TT is on. Doh! This is how people get to work during those 2 weeks from Ramsey to Douglas. This is also a blow to the shopkeepers of Ramsey who are reliant on a steady stream of tourists to boost summer sales. Arrrrrrrrrrgh!

Us islanders have not been consulted over this decision. Be warned, you tried to close Ramsey's cottage hospital and failed. You are going to have a fight on your hands over this one aswell, and it starts on my blog. Anyone want to join in feel free.

Ooh that was good. Sorry folks had to get that out of my system.

To redress the angry balance my daily photo is of a very placid butterfly. It's a red admiral taken again with the telescopic lens. I like telelscopic lenses, because you can focus on the subject, whislt the background fades and blurs. This then emphasises the chosen subject in the case the butterfly.


Wallaby last spotted stranded at Laxey trying to get back to Ramsey, but there are no bloody trains. Have i made my point yet?

Wednesday, 12 March 2008


What is happening to the Isle Of Man Celebrities at the moment.?Is there something in the water? Too many Manx kippers? Or have they just not said hello to the fairy folk when they go over The Fairy Bridge. Whatever it is they do seem to be getting themselves into trouble. Re my post yesterday "Berk In The Merc" aka Jeremy Clarkson being a naughty boy and using his mobile whilst driving. It now transpires that he may actually be prosecuted!

Castletown is situated at the lower end of the island, a beautiful little town that often features in TV and film. One of these of note was the short lived "Island At War." A drama that concentrated on the occupation of the Channel Islands by the German Army during World War 11. The Isle Of Man doubled for the Channel Islands mainly as Castletown, unchanged over the years bore a close resemblance to The Channels Islands during WW11 and of course the tax breaks films and TV get here. Locals were used as extras and locals old cars were also used. Some shop windows even have old money price lists still displayed which were used in the series.

The series proved more popular in America than here and never reached it's conclusion for varying reasons, the death of the writer, actor commitments, and it's popularity waning in the UK. Philip Glenister was one of the actors playing a German Officer, better known now of course as the wonderful character "Gene Hunt"of "Ashes to Ashes" and "Life On Mars."

Todays Pic is Castletown Quay, which i'm sure you had worked out by now. Always better to capture on a sunny day as it really brings out the blue hues of the water.Gene Hunt has long gone though. Jeremy Clarkson you might see though, possibly on foot if he gets a driving ban.


He has joined the Resistance and stowing away on one of those boats pictured.

Tuesday, 11 March 2008


Jeremy Clarkson, you know one of the 3 presenters of the fabulous, best car programme ever, "Top Gear" has done it again. No, not for shooting his mouth off again about what he's like to do to the ramblers on his land, motorbikers, or environmentalists, although it does involve his vocals.

Jeremy was pictured talking on his mobile phone whilst driving his merc at 70 per hour. Now we are not talking hands free,we are talking one hand on the wheel, the other gripping his moblie. No doubt he was looking for ramblers to run over and getting the info as to their whereabouts from the other person at the end of the mobile.

Jeremy is another Isle Of Man resident. One of the reasons he loves the place is that it isn't governed entirely by UK rules. An example of this is the speed limit. We don't exactly have one. Well yes we do, say when you are approaching the few towns we have, but basically it's carte blanche. So you can drive like a maniac on the mountain road and believe me drivers do. If you like rollercoasters, take a Isle of Man bus ride. It's cheaper than a rollercoaster ride, lasts longer and is far less predictable. I mean at least on a funfair ride you are strapped in, know the highs and lows and that it will at some point reach it's destination. None of the above can be said of taking the bus. For all those that watch Top Gear, it wouldn't surprise me if The Stig was an Isle of Man bus driver.

Top Gear latest news under links.

Todays pic is " Storm Clouds Of Ramsey." No we didn't have the storm, gales and floods that were predicted last night, so here's one from last summer.Took this one with a wide angled lens and chose black and white to emphasise the contrast of the white clouds and severe greys of the sky. Iso was 4oo. ooh getting technical, will stop it.


Wallaby found to be the person Jeremy Clarkson was talking to on the mobile when he was driving. The Wallaby, however, did not commit an illegal act as his set was hands free.

Monday, 10 March 2008


Firstly let me say best wishes to Patrick Swayze and good luck with his latest health battle.

Patrick Swayze is another fim star who graced our shores. He filmed the rom/com "Keeping Mom" on the island not so long ago. Apparently he was quite taken with the island and described the place as and i quote, " a magical place with magical people". Now who am I to disagree with a Hollywood legend. He even managed to get up here as far as Ramsey, in fact he was to be seen doing a spot of the old " dirty dancing" at the legendary Nightspot some of you have mentioned in your comments, Nightlife.

Ok, some of you have given it it's alternative names of er, the very uncomplimentary Fightlife or Shitelife. Nonetheless it remains as Ramsey's premier nightclub. Ok, premier is manipulating the figures somewhat as it's Ramsey's only Nightclub. Really you have to go there iF you are up this way. It's a real throwback to a bygone era. It attracts all comers, whatever age, musical taste, aliens and wallabies. You will find the population of Ramsey who haven't stayed in or still standing after the pubs close(not me remeber i fell off my heels and into a taxi) doing there own version of dirty dancing into the small hours. Be warned no trainers, but otherwise, if you have a pulse and the entrance fee your'e in.

Pic today is a "Moonlit Blackbird."Sure you can work out why that's it's title. Even he could get into Nightlife. Honestly it's non exclusivity is it's er charm.


Got turned away from Nightlife for wearing trainers.

Sunday, 9 March 2008


BBC'S Saturday Kitchen chef James Martin went head-to-head with Thomas Miller's very own version of The Stig, the mysterious test driver from Top Gear. Pity it wasn't the Stig though. Would love to take a peek under his helmet.

His Island visit was to help raise funds for "Hospice Isle of Man", which is celebrating its 25th birthday this year.

He put an Aston Martin V8 Vantage Roadster through its paces on Thursday on a closed section of Marine Drive before giving a cookery masterclass.

Later, he was guest speaker at Thomas Miller's black tie reception and fundraising dinner at the Mount Murray Hotel and Country Club. He also got to dance with a lucky girl who won the chance to do so in a competition.

This though for me was not the most important news of the week. No that honour goes to my beloved WEST BROM. going though to the semi finals of the F. A. Cup. My friend Joanne, the Wolves fan will not be amused. My cover is blown now. No i'm not shock horror from the Isle of Man, but from the The Black Country, many moons ago. I am as they say on the island a "come over."

Pic today is Ramsey Harbour on a crisp clear morning.

Well i'm off to annoy as many Wolves, Villa and Birmingham fans as i know with the good news. Not often us Baggies fans can be this smug. Feel free to join in if you are an Albion fan.


No sighting, but vicious rumour started (by me of course) that James Martin cooked it in his masterclass.

Saturday, 8 March 2008


No, the Manx Mafia didn't didn't kidnap me and cut off my pinkies re my Tony Soprano banking in the Isle of Man post, that was not the reason for my absence. No, it was all self inflicted. Fridays are our night out around Ramsey. It all started quite innocently as always with a few drinks in the Swan, but of course it never stays that way. A few became a pub crawl if i remeber or as much as i can recall, taking in the Plough, and Bar Logo, finishing off with the obligatory bad food( by that i mean junk) before falling into a taxi, into the house and straight to bed. Blogging was the last thing i was capable of doing. Suffice to say a relatively good night was had by all and i have the lovely bruise on my knee where i fell off my high heels as a momento.

For anyone coming to the island to visit, looking for an alternative to Douglas can I recommend the Ramsey pub scene. The good thing about Ramsey is all the pubs are very close together, so you can have a pub crawl literally my walking along the high street and harbour. For karaoke try the Stanley. You won't need directions you will hear the songs being murdered long before you see the pub. The other good thing is we have real pubs, not chains or wine bars, which makes for an interesting night for strangers as each pub has a unique atmosphere. Also we have a good age range out, so not just full of kids. Mind you as the Police Staion is a few yards from the main pubs this could be why.

Pic today is Dierdrie the lizard. Ain't she pretty? Ok, pretty perhaps to strong, but she is certainly photographic and posed nicely. Dierdre can be found at the Wildlife Park and is a big hit with kids. In fact this was a pic i took when i accompanied one of the local schools on a outing there as the photographer.

A link for some very odd, fuuny, serious, stange new stories is Somtirtha. Try it it's a good blog i happened upon.

So, is anyone coming here for the TT? If so and you see a little mad woman with a camera, who might use the name Babooshka, looking slightly hungover, clinging a black coffee and securing her spot to take pics er that would be me.


Must be hungover!

Thursday, 6 March 2008


Bet that got your attention didn't it!

Actually, it's true.Ok, not strickly true as he was a fictional character, but you get my drift. The fictional character, Tony Sporano of The Sopranos(doh!) did have money stashed away here in the Isle of Man in a Off Shore bank account, set up by his Russian contacts. Go back and check it out. Mid series i think. Really not my imagination, they name the Isle of Man in two episodes, honest. So refering to yesterday's blog and the 3 legs that appear on both the Isle Of Man and the Sicily flag now you know why. Not quite sure if we have a Manx Mafia but if we have should i be worrying now I have drawn your attention to the flags and dodgy cash connection. If my blog doen't appear tomorrow you will know why. I might be sleeping with the fishes!

The Isle of Man has long since had a reputaion for a place to salt your off shore funny money away, alas not true. Things have tightened up here. So while we do have a low tax treashold, we try not to be financial heaven for erm, funny money attained through, how shall we say not on the level means.

Photo today Marsh Orchid. No mystery with this one, what you see is what you get, although it was tucked away almost out of view amongst the long grass.Try and use a macro lens when you can for close up flower work. Watch out for breeze.A tripod is and remote also useful to cut out movement. Saying that this was a hand held, telescopic, windy day shot.Sometime your natural instincts are best.

For daily pics of Paris, check out new link added "Eric Tenin". Brilliant.


Obviously in hiding, not a peep.