Poca-droma ùr

Cheannaich mi a’ chiad phoca-droma agam ann an 1990, dar a bha mi ri dhol dhan Rìoghachd Aonaichte a’ chiad thuras. Bha e agam rè nam bliadhnaichean a lean: ghluais mi mo chuid seilbh iomadh uair annsan bho àite-còmhnaidh gu àite-còmhnaidh eile. Ach chaidh sgrios a dhèanamh air mu dheireadh thall, agus b’ fheudar dhomh ga leigeil dhìom.

Airson deagh ghreis, cha do dh’ionndrainn mi e. Ach o chionn ghoirid, chuir mi romham gum fàg mi am baile seo (gu dearbh, an ceàrn seo) cho luath ’s a thèid agam. (Tha an gràin agam orra a’ sìor fhàs nas làidire.) Mar sin, cheannaich mi poca-droma ùr, agus fhuair mi e Disathairne.

Cha robh cothrom agam ga chleadadh fhathast, ach tha e coltach gu bheil e cho math ris an t-seann fhear, leis an ìre mhath an aon tomhas-lìonaidh. Seadh, chan eil ach toll-mullaich aig a’ phrìomh roinn aige (b’ urrain dhomh cuideachd faighinn a-steach dhan fhear shean tro spèirr air an taobh aghaidh); ach air an làimh eile, tha barrachd pocannan ann, agus iad seo nas motha.

Co-dhiù no co-dheth, dar a thigeas àm an gluasaid, bidh poca-droma agam anns an tèid agam air mo chuid seilbh a ghiùlan a-rithist.


Mess tin set

It seems incredible, but apparently I’m unable to find one which would suit me.

Those offered by Amazon are mostly rectangular. Probably not a good shape for somebody who mostly cooks soups. The few cylindrical ones I found there were either sold by companies which don’t deliver here, or rather on the small side. If you go to a local shop, the ones they sell have a warning they’re not – for some reason – meant for cooking, only for serving.

I did find one which would be all right, but it had ‘Czech Republic’ engraved on both pots. I don’t want to be reminded I’m an exile each time I’m cooking. So I bought one of the small ones. Minute, as it turned out. Allegedly for two persons – well, maybe if they have the time to cook another meal every waking hour …



My mother once served me and my sister with porridge when we were kids. We found it absolutely inedible and, somewhat untypically, she never tried to impose it on us again. Since then this was one of the meals I only needed to look at to lose appetite. Then in 2014 in Argyll I noticed that many Scots my age apparently still perceived porridge as a common starter to a ‘full breakfast’ and that in a sense this tradition was still kept by the young ones, although these seemed more usually to opt for cornflakes.

Walking in the local Tesco on Monday I noticed they sold not only cornflakes, but indeed oatmeal as well. This set me thinking whether I shouldn’t, after all those years, give it another try. Either I’d find out that in fact it wasn’t so bad, or I’d know for sure it was. A look at the sachet told me that – contrary to my knowledge – there was no half-hour to be spent at the hotplate, no milk involved (I don’t have a fridge), simply preparing it like an instant noodle soup. That decided.

Upon opening the sachet the following morning the contents actually smelled good, and although the taste definitely wasn’t such as to make me look forward for the next time, I concluded that a next time there would be. Everybody claims it’s a healthy meal, it’s a traditional Scottish meal, it’s not particularly expensive and it can be made thin enough for me to consume fairly easily despite my current throat problems. All things said and done, it’s a no-brainer: I intend to breakfast on it a few times every week.



Incroyable. Ces jours-ci, je mange généralement juste des soupes, des petits pains (avec beaucoup de thé) et des œufs. Mais aujourd’hui, j’ai acheté neuf mini-pizzas (270 g en tout) et je les ai toutes mangées. Bien sûr, avec beaucoup de thé; néanmoins, je les ai mangées d’un trait et je les ai même appreciées. Peut-être que je pourrai aller pour manger dans un restaurant bientôt …



Il était drôle. Après l’hôpital, et quand je pouvais manger de nouveau, j’achetais souvent des choses que je n’avais pas eu l’habitude d’acheter avant pendant des anées, bien qu’il était souvent assez dur les bien apprécier. Du camembert, des spaghetti, des aliments sucré pour bébé (goût de fraises ou d’abricots), … J’ai même acheté une poêle et j’ai pris des œufs brouillés, du SPAM et des saucisses de hot-dog poêlées …

Bien sûr, après ça la beuverie a commencée et je ne mangeais pratiquement rien …


On Twitter again

Been there for a few months in 2012, then deleted my account. This February, on the spur of the moment (probably out of boredom), I created a new one. Like the first time round, I began by adding followed accounts, till I had hardly time for anything else than following them, then began gradually unfollowing those with too great tweets:interesting tweets ratio. I got almost to a ‘desirable’ number.

Then came the bender, then catching up on the consequent backlog and now I sort of regret I don’t follow a few more, I seem to have too much time on my hands. I even began considering contributing to Gaelic Wikipedia again, or rejoining Fòram na Gàidhlig. We’ll see.

PS Incidentally, the day after creating the account I was made aware via some account I followed that it was World Cancer Day. As I had had and possibly still had cancer, this was somewhat spooky.


Ag òl fhathast, ach chan eil e dona

Dimàirt, dh’òl mi sa mhadainn aon leann (as dèidh 10 tro Dhisathairne, 8 tro Dhidòmhnaich na Càisge is 4 tro Dhiluain). Airson greis, bha e coltach nach òl mi tuilleadh rè ùine fhada.

Ach a’ tilleadh, Dihaoine, bhon oifis lighiche-inntinn, bha aig an aon àm a’ ghrian a’ dèarrsadh agus gaoth làidir a’ sèideadh. Bha mi gu math sgìth agus shuidh mi sìos san ‘Liosan’. Dh’fhaod mi deoch gun alcol òrdachadh, ach cha tàinig an nòisean dha m’inntinn. Co-dhiù, cha do dh’òl mi ach aon leann agus chaidh mi air adhart, mo neart air ùrachadh.

Agus an-dè, bha mi sgìth fad an latha. ’S mathaid gun robh an cnatan agam as dèidh nan trì làithean agus a bha mi a’ dol gu dotairean ann an sìde gharbh. ’S mathaid gun robh cleas nas motha a dhìth orm (cha do dh’fhàg mi am flat tron dheireadh-sheachdain ach airson smocadh). ’S mathaid nach robh mi fhathast cleachdte a-rithist ris an aonaranachd, as dèidh nan seachdainean ann an taighean-seinnse. Co-dhiù no co-dheth, ruith mi a-mach dhan ‘Reul-chrios’ sa chiad àite airson teicheadh bho stampadh mhic na galla a tha a’ fuireach os mo chionn.

Agus abair iongnadh! Ged a bha e mu chuairt air aon uair deug air an oidhche, bha an donas jukebox sàmhach! Bha mi airson dà leann a ghabhail, ach on nach do thòisich e air cluich fad na h-ùine agus a bha mi ann, ghabh mi trì is bha mi nam shuidhe ann mu thimcheall air ceithir uairean a thìde, a leughadh The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides with Samuel Johnson, LL.D. le James Boswell.

Oidhche ciùin, tlachdmhor. Nuair a dhùisg mi an-diugh, tha fhios nach robh mi gu math buileach, ach bha mi fada na b’ fhearr na bha mi sna làithean roimhe.



Il allait lentement, surtout au début … mais je fasais des progrès, pas à pas. Progressivement, je réduisais ma consommation quotidienne de la bière et de la vodka. Un jour j’ai nettoyé la kitchenette et les toilets; un autre jour j’ai m’enhardi et je suis allé au magasin; le prochain jour je m’ai rasé … et le jeudi dernier je suis allé au bar matin mais je ne suis pas y allé depuis. Parce que Marc m’a envoyé un texto et j’ai realisé que j’ai dû être plus vite.

Alors, vendredi je suis allé à ma docteure et à l’usine; depuis samedi je n’ai bu aucun alcool, même chez moi; et pas à pas, mais plus vite, je me remettais à faire tout que j’avait fait avant la beuverie. Maintenant, la garçonnière est rangé, mes vêtements sont propre, je ne bois pas du tout (d’alcool), je fume très peu mais je mange beaucoup, donc mes douleurs sont parties, je continue d’apprendre « mes » langues … et j’ai visité tout les docteurs auxquels j’aurait dû rendre visite.

Le début de la radiothérapie et la chimiothérapie est jeudi, le 3 novembre.


Tue, 6/9: Anaesthetist

After Monday’s day shift, the last preliminary thing to do: simply an interview to find out whether there was a reason for any special treatment when anaesthetising me. I then had the rest of the day to prepare myself for being admitted to the hospital.

At the time I still thought I’d be back at work for Saturday’s back shift, reflecting with some resentment on the fact that the best feature of my rota was the three consequent days off every four weeks – which, as often as not it seemed, I kept losing by having some ‘tasks’ to do I didn’t have time for at a different time.


Na leth-shaor-làithean

Cha robh e cho dona, aig a’ cheann thall, a dh’aindeoin an toisich: nàbaidhean faramach, norragan trice is goirid an àite cadal iomchaidh, agus dùsgadh Dimàirt le fèithean (⁊ sgamhanan) uile buileach rag. Ach fhuair mi troimhe, agus an dèidh sin rinn mi na bha dùil agam dhe na gnìomhan ‘làitheil’ agam, eadhon feadhainn car ‘sònraichte’: tha m’ fhalt air a bhearradh, na h-uinneagan air an nighe, fiù ’s an taigh-beag (uill, seòmar-beag) air a pheantadh; thadhail mi air Rob, agus chunnaic mi Ross Murdoch a’ faighinn gu semifinals.

‘S bochd nach do lorg mi àm is/no neart airson an dotair fhaicinn ge-tà. Chan eil mo slugan dad nas fhearr na bha e, chan eil no mo chraiceann no plosgadh mo chridhe. Cò aig a tha fios dè cho fada ’s a mhaireas mi fhathast . . .


Victorinox Swiss Army knife

Years ago, I had a similar knife with a blade, a smaller blade, a bottle opener-cum-slotted screwdriver, and a tin opener. Mostly I used the tin opener, occasionally the screwdriver. For several years then I used the rotating-wheel type of a tin opener; I’ve grown so fed up with them that I bought a new Swiss Army knife, and ‘the real thing’ this time. Meaning it’s really Swiss.

This one has a blade, a smaller blade, a bottle opener-cum-slotted screwdriver-cum-wire stripper, a tin opener (which operates in the unusual, opposite direction), a Phillips screwdriver, a wood saw, a sewing awl, tweezers and a toothpick. Allegedly also a reamer; didn’t find it, but then I can’t imagine using it any more than several of the other functions even if I did. To tell the truth …

… I’ll probably mostly use the tin opener, occasionally the tweezers. But it’s fine having the screwdrivers and the saw just in case, eg if/when I had to move digs again – and the toothpick just for the fun of it.


Quasiment sans viande

Je ne suis pas végétarien, bien que je respecte ce qui sont. Mais le prix des saucissons en boîte a encore augmenté ici; j’ai arrêté de les acheter. (J’ai aussi n’achète plus la purée de pommes de terre instantanée pour mes repas festifs. Je l’aimais, mais juste comme la garniture.) La viande en boîte est tellement coûteuse que je presque pourrais devenir végétarien (au moins, pesco-végétarien); cependant, je n’ai pas un réfrigérateur et je ne sais pas quoi utiliser pour les sandwiches que je porte au travail que du pâté.


8 years online

A lot has happened since my last post like this. Once again, I’m living on the Net and only ‘occurring’ in the so-called real life. Unlike before my migration attempt, however, I’m mostly just observing what happens, without communicating much with anybody even online.

There is the nice portmanteau netizen, created as a blend of net and citizen. It would be nice if there was a similar blend made from net and hermit (what about nermit?), because that’s what I feel like now.


Bannie Day ’16: air ais a mhanachainn

Bha mi ag iarraidh gun bhòtadh na Breatannaich airson ‘Fhàgail’ agus rinn iad sin. As dèidh a’ chiad aoibhneis, thàinig e a-steach orm gun do dh’atharraich sin an suidheachadh anns a tha mi fhìn gu tur. Jusque-là, il y a eu de l’espoir, dè cho beag agus a bha e. It is virtually zero now. Mar sin dheth, je dois recontempler tout.

Cathair-eaglais Dhùn Chailleann thall Uisge Tatha (bho Cheum-choise an Inbhir).

Well, tant qu’il y a de la vie, il y a de l’espoir. La réincarnation, mar eisimpleir. Ach tha an sgeulachd seo a’ tighinn gu crìoch. Tha mi airson ga crìochnachadh mar bu chòir – agus an ìre mhath nam aonar. For the seagulls they have gone. Ge-tà, faodaidh fiù is foghar a bhith tlachdmhor, un petit peu.



Tasglannaiche gun fhiachan

Uill, ràinig mi an geata. Seadh, chan urrainn dhomh a ràdh le cinnt, ach tha e gu tur coltach gun d’fhuair comann an taigheadais an seic bhuamsa. On a thàinig e am barr nach robh fiach cìs comhairle orm idir, tha mi gun fhiachan mu dheireadh thall a-rithist.

Mar sin dheth, pàipear-balla ùr air an laptop agam a-nis. Oir ràinig mi an geata, agus tha agam ri dhol tarsainn drochaid, mar gum biodh: feumaidh mi crìoch a chur ri ‘giullachadh’ nan dealbhan agam, mus tòisich mi leabhraichean-latha is cuimhneachain a ghiullachadh.

Drochaid a’ Chonghail thar Loch Eite.

Tha fhios gum bidh drochaidean eile ann aig an aon àm. Mar eisimpleir, an craobh Fhrangach Duolingo a chrìochnachadh, fastaiche atharrachadh (dìreach fastaiche, seach obair, ge-tà), an t-samhradh ann am meadhan na h-Eòrpa fhulang agus mar sin sìos. Ach ’s e an rud as cudromaiche an-dràsta na dealbhan. Chan atharraich mi am pàipear-balla gus an coilean mi an gnìomh-sa.

Ach drochaid gu buileach eile a-nochd: èistidh mi, a’ chiad turas, ri Ropewalk – a cheannaich mi san t-Sultain an uiridh …


Fiachan na h-Alba

Phàigh mi air ais Housing Benefit Overpayment an-uiridh, cho luath ’s a d’fhuair mi tax refund; stad a’ bhanca àrachas an taighe a thoirt air falbh às an cunntas agam leotha fhèin. Ach bha mi a’ caomhnadh cha mhòr bliadhna mus robh mi cinnteach gun robh airgead gu leòr agam airson fhiachan màil is cìs comhairle a phàigheadh. (Bha cosgaisean riatanach eile agam cuideachd.)

Abair iongnadh, ge-tà, dar a fhreagair comann an taigheadais nach do dh’iarr iad ach £110.01 (bha mi an dùil air ’s mathaid ceithir ceud gu leth). Leis nach eil iadsan toilichte àireamh an cunntais aca a chur ann am post-d, leis nach eil mise toilichte fònadh, agus leis nach eil am banca an seo cleachdte ri seicichean, chan eil a’ chùis seo air a coileanadh fhathast.

Abair iongnadh eile, ge-tà, as dèidh dhuinn an t-seic a chur a-null (gun chinnt gum faod an comann ga cleachdadh mar a tha i), dar a leugh mi post-d o Chomhairle Cathair Ghlaschu, ag ràdh nach eil mu dheidhinn £160 acasan ormsa, ach thar £180 agamsa orrasan.

Ma sgrìobh mi dhaibh uile an-uiridh dar a thig mi an seo, gheibhinn an t-airgead bhon Chomhairle agus phàighinn comann an taigheadais leis … Co-dhiù, ‘is fhearr deireadh math na droch-thoiseach’: cho tràth ’s a nì mi chùis air fiachan na màil, bidh mi gun fhiachan sam bith – agus tha airgead gu leòr agam mu thràth eadhon nam briseadh an laptop agus an Kindle agam.


Bacadh air gnìomhan ùra

O chionn ghoirid, thàining e a-steach orm (a-rithist, a-rithist) gun toirinn dhomsa gnìomhan is pròiseactan ùra an ìre mhath cho tric ’s a choileanadh mi iad; gun robh feadhainn dhe na gnìomhan seana a’ dol air adhart ro shlaodach, agus nach robh feadhainn eile a’ dol air adhart idir.

Rinn mi (a-rithist, a-rithist) liosta dhe na bha agam mar tha, agus chuir mi romham nach cuirinn rithe (on 12 an Cèitean, an 25mh co-là-breith Thomaidh) rud sam bith nach biodh gu tur deatamach. (Uill, tha fhios nach do chuir mi crìoch air sgrìobhadh duilleagan ùra sa bhloga seo . . . )


Back to basics

The other day my laptop for some reason stopped producing any sounds. Apparently I deleted some software I shouldn’t have. Anyway, a ‘refresh’ solved the problem; it took a few days but after 87, then 6, then 45 and then 12 other automatic updates the one from Win 8 to Win 8.1 happened as well, so I got where I’d been before.

During those few days I also reinstalled the software I’m too used to to go without: Firefox, VPNUK and so on. Likewise, I refound the websites which are most important for me. In this respect I’m not where I’d been before. I’ve resolved to only add these one by one as I go along, if and when I decide I really need to use the particular software/visit the particular website.

I think something like this has happened before, more than once. Strangely, this time I really stick to the resolution – and it’s not all that hard. Maybe I’d become a little surfeited with the Internet …