Fictional Tales & Little Digressions
Journeys Past: So there I am minding my own business, visiting historical buildings - only to be sent back in time to witness events unfolding in front of me. Did I really wake up kneeling in a puddle on the Bridge of Sighs? Or did I nearly get run over by a tramcar recently, considering that the last trams stopped operating way back in 1962? Or how about being hit over the head and then getting chucked out of a cathedral for snoring?
Fearless Francis: Francis is a wee boy living in a tenement in Glasgow in the 1950s. Children then didn’t know they were poor, they just got on with it and made do with what little they had. Often they just used their imagination, just like Francis, with his head full of nonsense, creating his imaginary adventures, usually ending up getting himself and others into trouble.
Book Reviews: Some books that I’ve enjoyed reading over the years. No affiliation links - just a personal opinion and not necessarily about Glasgow. Everyone likes a good read and there’s some interesting reviews that might surprise you.
Digressions: This my hotchpotch section. There might be a story or two, or a website I’ve visited, or maybe I’m trying to provoke discussion on a contentious subject. I do encourage comments.
I may have taken liberties with some historical facts, so you’re wasting your time challenging the timeline and veracity of some of my stories. “It’s ma baw”, as we say in Glasgow, meaning it’s my ball, my stories. However, I’ve provided links for some of the stories that you may find interesting.
“A good storyteller never lets facts get in the way.” - Dave Allen
There you have it. Just a non-profit personal blog. I don’t have any affiliate links and I’m not sellng anything. No annoying adverts or pop-ups. I hope you enjoy the stories. Please leave a comment on anything that you like or somethng that gets on your - nerves.
Unless otherwise stated, photographs posted on here are © Wishart Frankfield.
Jack House sitting in George Square, Glasgow Picture courtesy of The Herald & Evening Times picture archive. Photosales website Jack House: author and restaurant critic I intend to write a more in-depth biography of Jack House, and I would be grateful for any stories, photos, anecdotes that you may have about this remarkable man. In the meantime, here is a brief synopsis of his career.
Jack House has been called ‘Mr Glasgow’ by many Glaswegians, a title well-deserved for a man who wrote so much about this city.
Amazon link (not affiliated) Between love and heaven’s siren song ‘Between’ by Cyndi Tefft (CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (21 April 2011))
I must confess that I don’t like mushy love stories or stories about an almighty god, but I review books that are set or partly set in Scotland, so it was worth looking at.
Right from the first chapter, I was hooked.
Cyndi Tefft skilfully unfurls this tale of life and death, of time travel - and of course, of love.
Amazon link (not affiliated) Ruby and her family try to live through hard times and avoid scandal ‘Ruby’ - by Meg Henderson (Black & White Publishing (15 Sept. 2011))
Hand-painted murals are uncovered by workmen renovating some old tenement flats on the High Street in Glasgow. Ruby is invited to see again these murals that were created by her Uncle Jakey when she was a little girl.
Amazon link (not affiliated) He trawls both the mean streets of the Gorbals and the green hills of western Scotland in his search for the truth ‘The Hanging Shed’ - by Gordon Ferris (Corvus; First Thus edition (1 Mar. 2011))
Douglas Brodie is a war hero and ex-policeman working in London as a freelance journalist. He receives a telephone call from a former close friend, Hugh Donovan - from Barlinnie Prison in Glasgow.
Houldsworth Mausoleum A video I made some years ago when I was learning Linux. Created using Kdenlive video editor and Libreoffice Impress (similar to MS PowerPoint).
Full credits are shown at the end of the video.
At the start of the video I mentioned that the Glasgow Necropolis was officially opened in 1833, which is correct but the first jewish burial was that of Joseph Levi in 1832. The first christian burial was that of Elizabeth Miles in 1833.
A graveyard does not scare Fearless Francis Tucked in between a tenement building and Saint Mary’s Chapel Priests House in Abercromby Street was an old graveyard. It had been many a long year since its last occupant was laid to rest there and finally it ended up as a football pitch for Saint Mary’s Primary School. Now, even that school has gone, famous for having its playground on the roof, where children were forced to play in all sorts of weather at break time.
Fighting 200 Spanish soldiers - and Smelly Nellie Francis had just come back from the Saturday Matinee at the Olympia cinema in Bridgeton Cross. The film was The Sign of Zorro, starring Guy Williams. This was new to Francis, and his fertile imagination lost no time in creating scenarios that would help him play out his fantasies.
And now as Fearless Francis, he was fighting for his life against overwhelming odds.
There’s a mean looking hombre riding the number 9… The number 9 to Auchenshuggle tramcar trundled its way slowly along Argyle Street. The beam from Its cyclops headlamp made the wet cobblestones glisten and shimmer in the twilight of the winter’s evening. The rain had just stopped and the streets of Glasgow seemed to have been scrubbed clean with the fresh rainwater.
Francis knelt on the long seat of the tram and looked out the window.
Our hero encounters a spaceship disguised as a shop. To a seven-year-old boy, the world was an exciting place. In his world, he was a super hero, afraid of nothing. Francis pored over his Superman and Batman comics (bought for 9 old pennies from a shop in Orr Street), his young mind soaking in all the fantastic stories that helped feed his wild imagination.
One day, the wee boy’s granny sent him off to Paterson’s Dairy for a packet of Red Label Brooke Bond tea.
Amazon link (not affiliated) Drawing on the ancient wisdom found in a Peruvian manuscript ‘The Celestine Prophecy - An Adventure’ by James Redfield (Bantam; First Printing edition (6 Oct. 1994))
The Celestine Prophecy contains secrets that are currently changing our world. Drawing on the ancient wisdom found in a Peruvian manuscript, it tells you how to make connections between the events happening in your own life right now…and lets you see what is going to happen to you in the years to come.