Adding that extra something

It started life as a tower, built in 1487 by the Hoppringill (Pringle) family. Like all such buildings Old Gala House was later extended and improved, firstly in 1583, then in 1611 and in 1635, with further improvements in the 17th and 18th centuries when the building more or less as it is today emerged.

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A hint of Poirot

Forty six years ago the rail line that ran from Edinburgh, through the villages of Heriot, Fountainhall and Stow, then the Border towns of Galashiels, Melrose, Selkirk and Hawick and onwards to Carlisle – the Waverley line – was closed. The government of the day, looking as always for budget cuts, waved around a report into the railway network, little changed since Victorian times, and decided on implementation of the suggested cuts.

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Magnifying candlepower

Glass has always had a fascination for me. When I was young there was a craze for collecting glass animals, cheap enough to be bought with pocket money, and usually sporting elongated necks, corkscrew tails, floppy ears and black beady eyes. Collections of them adorned many a young girl’s bedroom, but they were prone to breaking so I suspect few survived beyond the fad following hard on its heels.

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Flowing water, Fallingwater

March, it is said, comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb. Its entrance this year has lived up to the first part of that, the weather being mixed with bursts of sun through clouds, followed by rain and snow flurries, with a wind from the Arctic that nips like pincers.

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Jasmine has a red sports car

Sometimes I just want to get out, away from computer and books, folders and papers. Where we go (husband is usually dragged along) doesn’t much matter, as long as there is something of interest to photograph.

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An interloper in history

Cameras have been on my mind recently, and when I look through old family photographs I think how lucky we now are in this digital age. Taking photographs is easy, effortless and with the press of button or touch screen can be sent to others or printed out. We can use a range of programmes to manipulate them on our computer, tweaking colours, sharpening images, even airbrushing things or people unwanted. Who says the camera never lies! It may have been true at one time, but no longer.

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