Ceud Mìle Fàilte

Photography Nature Technology Food
Movies Music Politics

and life in the Highlands.


Thank you for dropping-by, I hope you enjoy your visit. The main content is to be found in the blog where I discuss everything and anything but topics including photography, nature, technology, food, movies, music and politics make regular appearances.

I commonly write reviews of movies (or films, if you prefer). Some movie reviews are short, others will be discussed in more detail. The scope covered will be mainly mainstream English language movies from the 1930s until the present day.

About me

My name is Iain MacDonald and I live in the Highlands of Scotland (although I have lived elsewhere in the past). I am a big fan of Free & Open Source Software which I use both professionally and at home.

Computing and technology tend to infuse themselves into my other interests, as once you learn some skills in one area it is convenient to use them to solve problems in other spheres.

When not tinkering with computers, I am likely to be found repairing things because living in the countryside you learn to be resourceful.

Of course, man doesn't live by SSH tunnels and kerosene vapour burners alone so food, as a subject, makes regular appearances too. Did I mention I used to work in hospitality?

Latest Life articles

My most recent ramblings.

  • Feeling sheepish

    I went for a walk along a forestry style track, yesterday. Ahead of me was a ewe, with two lambs. The ewe felt nervous about my approach, and started to trot away from me. The lambs were, of course, following her closely. However, the sheep didn't trot away uphill or ... [Read more...]

  • Regatta Hydrafort Matt Jacket

    I needed to buy a waterproof jacket for use when working. I also have a Gore-Tex jacket from Craghoppers, which is excellent, but I didn't want to ruin that jacket by using it for working every day. I have a few other Regatta products which are well made, so, for ... [Read more...]

  • Highland Life and the Coronavirus

    It is quite extraordinary, I've never experienced anything like it. We are now a couple of weeks away from Easter, which is normally the time when the summer tourist season starts. The roads would see increased traffic, and the tourist hotspots would start to be busy. Not this year. [Read more...]

  • New Manual Coffee Grinder

    I was without my vintage wooden Zassenhaus, so I rushed out and bought a new manual coffee grinder. The one I got is from Maison & White, and it is amazingly good. It is adjustable from very fine to coarse. Grinding is done with ceramic burrs, and the rest of ... [Read more...]

  • Push or Pull?

    A couple of days ago I saw these two boats coming up the canal towards us, as we were doing the daily dog walk. It was clear from a distance that the two boats were very close together, and I assumed the first boat was towing the second. [Read more...]

Click here to view the whole Life section.

My latest Mastodon posts

Mastodon is a microblogging app that is part of the decentralised web known as The Fediverse. See this article for more details.

Fitheach (@fitheach@mstdn.io)

Thu, 09 Apr 2020 19:29:18 +0000

The original single speed/fixed gear bikes.

Dundee Bicycle Club (1882)

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Wed, 08 Apr 2020 19:17:56 +0000

In 1956, singer and political activist, Paul Robeson was banned from travelling outside of the USA, due to McCarthyism. When testifying at HUAC he claimed his 5th Amendment rights, and refused to reveal his political affiliations. Consequently, his movements were restricted.

The following year, to get around this ban, Robeson performed his first Telephone Concert, where he entertained 1,000 concert goers in London, from his base in the USA.

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Mon, 06 Apr 2020 20:01:00 +0000

One wee treat I'd forgotten about...
I'm now using Python 3.7 instead of 3.5. Of course, this means all my pip installed packages and my virtualenvs are now broken. Each one (there are dozens of them) has to be upgraded individually.

No matter, I haven't got anything else to do. 🙄

Mon, 06 Apr 2020 19:47:43 +0000

Another short film about the Declaration of Arbroath, this time in Scots. Presented by Alistair Heather.

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Mon, 06 Apr 2020 18:08:50 +0000

RIP Honor Blackman
1925 - 2020

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Sun, 05 Apr 2020 20:13:29 +0000

This is my second weekend without seeing anyone, not even figures in the distance.

Sure feels strange.