Sunday, February 05, 2006

Queens Park Gyp- ill man's account of events

A clear and slightly chilly morning was presented to us for our first recorded Gyp. A brief bus journey was required from Glasgow city centre and dropped us off at the entrance to this famous old public park in the south side of the city. A short but rather steep climb was required to reach the glass house. Clairwil, knowing the terrain better than I had planned that we scale this peak first in the interests of getting it out of the way and not troubling our tired old legs any more than we needed to.

The glasshouse itself was a revelation. The heat hit me immediately and a bit of disrobing was required(easy ladies, all that came off was my scarf) The pond caused immediate interest. The majority of the fish were brightly coloured but rather small tropical numbers, though they were no match for the bottom feeding leviathans who lurked and darted around the other end of the pool. Observing all this with an air of mild bemusement were two tropical ducks. They were a little inactive, but their prescence gave the whole thing a slightly surreal air.

A quick look around the animal house was in order. The tropical birds and the Chinchillas being the stars of the show. Then it was off out again into the cold February air. The next port of call was the falgpole at the top of the park. The views out towards the North of the city were astonishing. The words "I Can See My House From Here" came to mind. I couldn't, but you know what I mean. On a completely clear day, I may just have been able to.............

Then it was down the hill to the duck pond. About half way down however, we were halted in our tracks by a pair of small dogs who indulged in the kind of frantic chasing that only little dogs seem able to muster. After a few moments watching this whirlwind of fallen leaves and dog hair we decided to move on to something a little more serene. A few ducks were seen hanging out with some swans on a small islet, probably up to no good but beyond that the vast majority of the bird population were small gulls and pigeons. Very nice they were too, but it was the handfull of Swans that piqued the interest of a few families at the waters edge.

A fine day was wrapped up with an excellent lunch and a few well earned drinks in a rather nice Kilmarnock Road hostelry.

Until next time.................

p.s I'll stick some photos up in a seperate post. Blogger is playing silly beggars with me and won't let me upload photos in this post.

More Gyp Photos From Queens Park

Hurrah For Queens Park


That's gyp number one out the way and very jolly it was too. We got off to a shaky start having encountered the rudest bus driver in the world. Far be it from me to tell a man how to earn his living but if people getting on a bus and paying their fare made me angry I would not be working as a bus driver.

Anyway we arrived at Queens Park after the traditional twenty minute stop at Eglington Toll and headed straight for the Glasshouse. I love the Glasshouse particularly the fish, ducks and of course my favourite the chinchilla who appears to have reproduced since my last visit. The baby chinchillas are fantastic, perky wee things who merrily zip about in a seemingly random fashion. I was so excited by the baby chinchillas I forgot to sing the chinchilla song. If any of you are planning to visit the chinchilla, please sing the following to the tune of your choice 'chin chin chin chin chilla, fa la la la la la la la'. The chinchilla has never indicated to me whether it enjoys this or not but I fancy I see a contended smile on it's wee face when it hears this tender tribute.

I was a bit miffed that the Cactus and Succulents section was shut but other than that enjoyed my stoat round the Glasshouse. After that we strolled along to the flagpole and marvelled at the view. I'm wild for views, all sorts of views rural, urban or suburban. Sadly it was a bit misty which obscured the hills in the distance, however I'd recommend a trip to the flagpole on a clear day.

For some reason all joy in my life is swiftly followed by tears and I suffered an episode of mild trauma when I was menaced by birds. There were thousands of them sitting in a tree watching, just watching. God knows what they were planning but it was chilling. The ill man has captured this terrifying episode on camera and believe me the relevant authorities will be informed. I felt like poor Tippi Herdren in 'The Birds'.

As a long term martyr to my nerves I put this episode behind me and strolled into Shawlands for lunch. For the love of God go to the Brooklyn cafe on Minard Rd next time you're out that way. The food is more pleasing stodge that haute cuisine but they do what they do well and deserve your custom. I'd also strongly recommend their vegetarian breakfast next time you're hungover. I should also point out that they serve Coke in the proper glass bottles with a straw, none of this cans or plastic bottles nonsense.

After lunch we both suffered a minor trauma by foolishly heading into the Hogshead on Kilmarnock Rd. Big mistake, it was populated by shirt wearing thugs who reeked of stale farts, aftershave and random violence. We lasted roughly one minute before leaving and heading to Stube further along the road only to witness a a saloon skirmish. I have no idea what caused it but apparently one guy was 'being a dick' which caused another fellow to hurl a pint over him a give him a slap. Lord knows what set it all off but the police were called and calm was restored.

There is a lot I've missed out like the dog chase and the startled squirrel but the ill man will no doubt give you his version of events at some point.