Happy Christmas Everyone – Good to be Back!

First of all – a ‘Happy Christmas’ to my blogging friends who celebrate Christmas Day, and ‘Season’s Greetings’ to my other blogging friends around the world!

I’m afraid I have not been posting, reading my favourite blogs, commenting, or in actual fact doing anything else over the last few weeks because I have been rather unwell! I have missed keeping up with everyone and promise I will catch up with all of your posts in due course! I particularly want to thank my blogging friends Xandre VerkesΒ and Katie JohnsonΒ (click on their names to visit their blogs) for their concerns when I stopped posting and their good wishes! That is what friendship is all about – even online! Thanks girls!

I had wanted to take some photographs of local Christmas lights, customs etc. for a couple of posts as we approached Christmas but since I haven’t been out of the house that was impossible. So, instead, in this post I have included an old Christmas photograph taken in Masham, North Yorkshire and, since most of us like to have a ‘tipple’ at Christmas, a poem I wrote some years ago! Hope you like them!

Is this the 'real' Santa Clause?

All things that Exist

There has to be an answer to all things that exist,
There has to be a reason but I don’t know what it is!
Living is a mystery and it takes it out of me,
It keeps my mind confused and tense,
When I want it to be free!

So I drink a bit and I drink some more and try to reason why,
That birds can fly when we just walk,
Why the Sun hangs in the sky!
But the answer still eludes me as I lay down on the floor,
And I need a drink but I can’t get up to get a little more!

So I think there must be questions that always will exist,
That will be short of answers as long as we get ‘pissed’,
And the birds will fly and we’ll still walk and the mystery remains,
And I’ll drink a bit and I’ll drink some more to pacify my brain!

By the way, this poem is not about me! It was an attempt to write an amusing Scottish/Irish Folk song!

Right, this post still seems a bit short, and as most of you know I am a patriotic Scot! With that in mind, I am going to include a couple of photographs of Eilean Donan Castle that I took in August, although weather wise it could have been in December, of this year. Some of you might recognise the castle from the film ‘Highlander’ starring Christopher Lambert with music by Queen! If you have Google Earth you can check it out for yourselves by entering Eilean Donan Castle in the search box!

Eilean Donan Castle, Scotland

Eilean Donan Castle, Scotland

Eilean Donan Castle, Scotland

Well, there you have it! I am up and running again! Thanks to all of you who have continued to ‘have a look at my blog’, even though I have been absent, and who have signed up for e-mail notification of new posts! I hope you liked the photographs (and poem)!

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22 thoughts on “Happy Christmas Everyone – Good to be Back!

    • Hey Bob – Thanks for coming over and saying hello! I have over 100 posts to catch up on over the next couple of weeks, or maybe months! Looking forward to reading them all and seeing the photies! Hope you and yours had a good Christmas, Bob, and that you have a great New Year!

      Cheers

      John

  1. Loved your photographs. Beautiful place. And the little Santa looks way too cute climbing up the wall. Thanks for sharing. Merry Christmas! πŸ™‚

    • Hello Nandini – Nice to hear from you! Too many houses with no chimneys nowadays so poor old Santa has to find other ways in to deliver his presents! Will catch up with your blog in due course! I hope you have a very happy and prosperous New Year in 2012!

      Cheers

      John

  2. Welcome back, John! Glad to see you’re feeling better. Love the photo of Santa. I like cute things like that any day over lights. πŸ™‚ And the poem! Perfect good drinking song. πŸ™‚

    And the castle photos. Just gorgeous. That first one especially.

    And you’re more than welcome for checking in on you. Glad to see you back. πŸ™‚

    • Hi Katie – Nearly back to full health and really happy to be blogging again with everyone! Not often you see Santa just hangin’ around! I think he has just reached the end of his rope! (Stupid Joke) Will catch up with your posts over the next few weeks – they are all sitting in my e-mail just waiting to be seen and read! Have a great New Year, Katie, and I hope it is everything you want it to be!

      Cheers

      John

  3. Hi John, I was wondering where you have been, sorry to hear you have not been well and glad that you are on the mend!
    The castle pictures are incredibly beautiful. Such atmosphere. I love them!
    Take good care and all the best to you over the holidays.
    Karen

    • Hey Karen – Thanks for dropping in and for your good wishes! Eilean Donan is a beautiful castle surrounded by hills and mountains. The weather there is often cloudy and wet, as is the whole of the West of Scotland; but as you say, it is very atmospheric and I love it! I used my tripod and shot three images for each photograph – one exposed for the sky, one for the castle and one for the foreground. I then merged them in Photoshop to give a more accurate ‘whole photograph’ exposure. With the weather the way it was, with one image only for each shot, the sky would have been burned out, or the ground so dark that it would have been unrecoverable! Glad you like them! Have a great New Year, Karen!

      Cheers

      John

  4. I think I’ve been too egocentric of late. The world revolves around me! I noticed your absence but didn’t “look in on you”. I love the Santa. As we live in a single story home he probably wouldn’t work for us. But we don’t decorate at all. Not even a tree. Well, now that you’re feeling better I look forward to more posts from you. And the song/ poem is outrageous! Love it!

    • Hi Doc! Sorry to read in your post that you too have been a bit under the weather! What a time of year to catch the ‘dreaded lurgy’! Glad you liked the song/poem and I particularly appreciate that from someone, yes you, who writes so well! I hope you and yours have a fantastic New Year in 2012!

      Cheers

      John

  5. Ha…Your poem reminds me of a song my Dad used to sing…about cigerettes and whiskey and wild wild women.they drive you crazy, the drive you insane….Ha! So the poem that you post, brought back memories to me..Ha! Am sorry you were sick, but hope the New Year brings lots of health and happiness you and yours…Your Scotish Castle photos was awesome…..

    • Hi Dorothy – Scottish and Irish Folk songs are full of whisky and wild, wild women – somehow the writers of these songs always seem to link the two together! I suppose it goes back to times when pubs in Scotland and saloons in the Wild West were where you drank and met ladies of ‘ill repute’!!! I’m glad you liked my attempt at poetry/songwriting and that you liked the photographs. I hope you and yours have a super New Year in 2012!

      Cheers

      John

  6. such a beautiful poem ..that seems to have come directly from your heart.
    and super awesome photographyy..
    i write too
    visit my blog when ever you feel like,
    stay blessed πŸ™‚

    • Ah, a new follower! Welcome, Blink! I have just visited your blog but haven’t yet had time to have a detailed read! I will do so shortly! Really glad that you liked the poem and the photographs! Please accept my New Year wishes to you and yours for the coming year!

      Take Care!

      John

  7. Hey John! I was wondering where you’d gone , but hope you’re feeling better. Thought you’d gone on some mad and exciting adventure!

    Anyway, just wanted to tell you I’ve nominated you for The Versatile Blogger Award – and this post and the whole blog is testament to why! πŸ˜€

    Keep it up, love it all!

    Becky

    • Hi Becky – Great to hear from you and yes, I am feeling a whole lot better! I wish I had been on a mad and exciting adventure but alas no – still 2012 is coming up – plenty of time for that! Congratulations on your Versatile Blogger Award and thank you very much for nominating me for the Versatile Blogger Award! It is awesome! Like you, I have to make the same admission – only worse! I have already been nominated three times but haven’t yet followed up on it!! Naughty boy!! If I still had my school I would give myself a hundred lines!!! The first time I was nominated was about a week after I first started my blog and I didn’t have any other blogs that I followed – didn’t know how to find other people! The other nominations, along with yours, has come in the last couple of weeks, so I am must do something about it! Becky, you already know that I think your street and music photography is β€˜magic’, so in wishing you β€˜all the best’ for 2012, I hope the year, your photography and your new university life bring you lots of fun, happiness and success!

      Cheers

      John

  8. Hi John, I am glad to see you back. Wishing a very Happy New Year !! I liked Santa’s photograph, it’s kind of cute and the castle photographs are amazing πŸ™‚

    • Thanks, AJ! I also wish you and yours a very happy and prosperous New Year. Yes, it is good to be back online – still have over 100 posts to catch up on though, including yours! Will catch up – eventually!

      Cheers

      John

  9. Hi John!!! So glad to hear that you are feeling better!!!! πŸ˜€ Again loving the poem!!! & the photos are gorgeous!!! Super dramatic!!! The Santa makes me miss the places up north… πŸ˜‰ We are back home from holidays & I have a HUGE amount of posts & emails to catch up to!!! Yikes!!! πŸ˜€ Hope you had a very merry Xmas & that the year ahead looks bright & sunny!!!! πŸ˜‰ Wishing you tons of wellness for 2012!!! **

  10. Hi Xandre – Firstly, a very Happy and Prosperous New Year to you and ‘he who thinks he’s boss’! It is good to hear from you and I really hope you enjoyed your holiday – looking forward to seeing lots of your new photographs! Glad you enjoyed my poem and photos! I find producing poetry quite odd – I can go for months without inspiration and then suddenly a couple will pop into my head – I think you have to be in the right frame of mind or mood to produce them! Xmas and New Year were great, as I hope they were for you? I was on the mend by then so was able to enjoy them to the full! We haven’t had any snow yet this year, which is quite disappointing, but plenty of cloud, wind and rain, which is not unusual! You know, I’m waffling on here but I am never quite sure whether anyone comes back to read these responses? I think I will also drop over to your blog and leave a message there! Anyway, looking forward to lots of posts from you in 2012!

    Cheers

    John

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