Posted by: christinelaennec | February 11, 2015

A return to Aberdeen

Thank you all so much for your good wishes and lovely comments to my last post.  We all appreciate them so much.  We did manage our weekend in Aberdeen!  The weather smiled upon us, the Dafter was of course tired but also hugely boosted by seeing friends.  It was the first time that we’d returned all together since we left over a year and a half ago.  I will have three posts about our trip back, which I will interweave with other posts as February continues.

The drive down was beautiful.  This is the best photo that I managed to take – you can just about see the snow-covered hills to the east of Stirling, off in the distance.  There were other moments of much more dramatic views of the hills – but as I was driving, I can’t really show you!

View of snowcapped hills near Stirling.  February 2015.

View of snowcapped hills near Stirling. February 2015.

We stopped at Glendoick Garden Centre, someplace the Dafter knows well.  Somewhere in the archives I know I have photos of her at a very young age crawling around their play area.  Here she is at 17:

Revisiting swings of her youth.  Glendoick garden centre near Perth.  February 2015.

Revisiting swings of her youth. Glendoick garden centre near Perth. February 2015.

We took a family shot.  The Dafter pointed out how pale she is compared to us, even in winter – this is the paleness that many other ME/CFS parents have seen in their children.  Sometimes the paleness comes quite quickly, and is a sign that your child is becoming particularly unwell.  But the Dafter coped very well with the three-hour drive:

Family selfie, February 2015.

Family selfie, February 2015.

On Saturday morning, Michael and I walked up into the city centre – I will do another post about our walk.  It was so nice to be back in such a familiar place:

King Edward, Aberdeen spires.  February 2015.

Aberdeen spires. February 2015.

A familiar sight, birds on the rooftops.  Note the grey snowguard just at the bottom of the steep roof.  You still see them on older buildings in Aberdeen and other places in Scotland.  They are there to catch the thawing snow.  The snow melts through the holes, and passersby are not endangered by an avalanche:

Pigeons on a roof, Aberdeen.  February 2015.

Pigeons on a roof, Aberdeen. February 2015.

A photo of me with Union Terrace Gardens behind, and a Kelly’s cat next to me:

Me next to one of Kelly's cats, Union Street, Aberdeen.  February 2015.

Me next to one of Kelly’s cats, Union Street, Aberdeen. February 2015.

Michael was very interested to see the newly-opened up vista in front of Marischal College and the lovely Provost Skene’s house:

Provost Skene's house and Marischal College, Aberdeen.  February 2015.

Provost Skene’s house and Marischal College, Aberdeen. February 2015.

I hope that Aberdeen City Council will change their minds about filling in this space with more buildings. Many people have been clamouring for this to be made into a public square, where everyone can admire these stunning examples of Aberdeen architecture.

Signs of spring:  winter aconites!

Winter aconites, Aberdeen, February 2015.

Winter aconites, Aberdeen, February 2015.

A beautiful gate and fence:

Art Nouveau railings in Aberdeen.  February 2015.

Art Nouveau railings in Aberdeen. February 2015.

And a stunning sunset that evening:

Winter sunset, Aberdeen.  February 2015.

Winter sunset, Aberdeen. February 2015.

We’ve been home for two days now.  The first day back, the Dafter felt absolutely horrendous and was in a lot of pain.  But yesterday she managed to come out with me, to meet friends.  So that is a very good sign.  I think the happiness of reconnecting was worth it.



  1. I am thrilled that you had a good weekend away and that it did the Dafter a little good.

  2. I’m so glad it went so well. And hope the Dafter recovers quickly.

  3. Looks like you had a lovely trip. Your photos are amazing. And, I hope the Dafter will recover soon. Sending you my Valentine’s greetings from California 🙂

  4. It is really a beautiful city, and you are a beautiful family. You all look happy and maybe there will be a few more baby steps before the Dafter’s complete recovery, but we will all hope for the happiest of outcomes❤️.

  5. Great to see that such an adventure was undertaken, and has brought such pleasure, even though it came with a cost of a temporary setback to the Dafter’s progress. What’s the alternative? To withdraw into the safety of a domestic cocoon? That surely carries a greater cost.

    I love the Winter Sunset picture. I note that the silhouetted chimneys don’t seem to show any smoke emissions. Are such fires (coal, originally, I imagine) banned now?

  6. I didn’t know those guards on the edges of roofs were for snow, how interesting. I’m delighted that the Dafter managed the trip up to Aberdeen and hope she’s recovered from the downturn afterwards. Lovely to see you all in the selfie. 🙂

  7. Glad you had a lovely time and the weather was kind for travelling. xx

  8. Dear everyone, thanks so much for enjoying our Aberdeen trip along with us!

    oldblack, you are so right – there is a huge cost to staying inside where it is “safe” and less tiring. As far as I know, fires are allowed in Aberdeen – where there are areas in Glasgow where you are only allowed to burn “smokeless” fuel. We had an open fire when we lived there, which we used from time to time. Our older neighbours had a fire on nearly every day of the year and didn’t seem to use their central heating. However, in our flat only one of the six fireplaces remained in working order. So five chimneys would never have had smoke coming through them.

    Lorna I am amazed and chuffed to have taught you a small detail about Scottish buildings! (Indulge me!)

  9. Hi, I have read your blog and thoroughly enjoy it. I do hope the medical profession find something to help your darling dafter. I would agree with you she is very pale , your daughter always puts on a brave front and a beautiful sunny smile. I met another lady with ME and she said she was having an awful time of it, I recommended your blog to her. I shall pray for your family and have faith your miracle is on its way

    • Dear Karen, thanks so much for your kind words, I’m glad you enjoy the blog. There are studies on ME happening at Newcastle, and they are finding some interesting biomedical differences between people with ME and healthy people who are sedentary. I’ve heard that in Manchester a doctor is doing a study whereby people with ME have been helped with vitamin therapy. There are still GPs who don’t believe ME/CFS is real, which is hugely frustrating. So I think it will be some time before the medical profession understands the condition (or conditions) very well, and can do anything really effective for sufferers. I pray that there will be a breakthrough sooner rather than later. Please give your friend my best – I hope she finds support and help, and maybe some comfort from reading about our adventures. Thank you for your prayers.

  10. So glad your daughter made it through and is up and about again. Such beautiful pictures. I just can’t believe it has been that long since you moved. I remember reading your posts at that time. Amazing how short time really is.

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