Flash Gordon (1980)

It is now 40 years since this cult classic was filmed, including the opening airfield scenes which were shot on the Isle of Skye.

There have been rumours of a remake for some years, but nothing definite yet.

This version of the 1930s comic strip is a lot of fun, and has a great soundtrack by Queen. A more in-depth review coming soon.

Thanks to @gedvondur for the reminder.

Want to appear in a new forthcoming Netflix period drama being filmed in the Highlands?
Live within travelling distance of Aviemore?

Netflix are needing extras for the new production being filmed in September. The extras will be paid.

Applications here:
castingcollective.co.uk/become

I can't believe this:

* it is only 10°C outside
* the rain is pelting down
* it's July in the Highlands
* I'm lighting the wood burning stove

Particularly abundant on felled woodland areas, rocky waste ground, and often where you don't want them.

Common foxglove - Lus nam ban-sìth - Digitalis purpurea

They are a biennial, producing downie leaves only in the 1st year and the easily recognisable flowers in the 2nd year. Grows up to 235cm.

The Gaelic common name suggests they are for the women fairyfolk rather than gloves for foxes.

As promised, the fruit of:

Wild Strawberry - Tlachd-shùbh - Fragaria vesca

As you can see from the second photo "someone" has been nibbling the ripe fruit already.

The wild fruit are about ⅓ the size of commercially grown strawberries.

My post showing the Wild Strawberry flowers:

mstdn.io/@fitheach/10209403870

Wick is a town in the far north east corner of the , in .

When the movie (John Wick) was released the name Wick was trending worldwide (Birdsite) with hundreds of thousands of mentions.

I wasn't aware of the movie and couldn't imagine what was going on in this small Highland town to make it so newsworthy. 😃

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wick,_Ca

I just love these old MacBraynes' busses. The design, the lines and the colour schemes are great. Modern busses in comparison look boring.

MacBraynes were an institution in the & Islands, operating bus, lorry & ferry services across the whole region.

The company was merged with the Caledonian Steam Packet Co., and the two became known as Caledonian MacBrayne, or CalMac for short.

Photos from the late 1950s & 60s.

My second gallery is now online:

fitheach.co.uk/galleries/wildf

It includes most of the flowers I photographed in the first half of 2019.

The third gallery is 50% complete, it'll be coming soon.

Nature, red in tooth and claw (1)

I've seen very few dragonflies this year. Yesterday, the sun was out and I saw dozens of dragonflies.

Usually when I approach dragonflies they buzz off. This one had just caught prey (some sort of bee) in mid-flight and had settled to devour it. I got a few photographs.

Golden-ringed dragonfly - Cordulegaster boltonii

Magnificent creature. About 8cm long. Female.

A very distinctive , nothing else quite like it (in )

Greater stitchwort - Tursarain-mhòr - Stellaria holostea

What looks like two petals is in fact one petal with a very deep incision. In consequence the petals are very delicate. You can see one petal is broken in half in photo 1. That photo also shows two blooms about to open, and several buds.

Each flower has a total of 5 petals.

Another really common wildflower in the .

Wood cranesbill - Crobh-preachain coille - Geranium sylvaticum

Seeing it so frequently probably leads to people ignoring it, which is a shame. It has delicate petals with lovely gradations in colour.

As the botanical name makes clear it is part of the Geranium family. Likes shaded areas in woods. The cranesbill is a useful source of pigment to dye clothing.

On tonight's I saw a Elder in flower. I decided to photograph the flowers.

After about 10 seconds I started to feel a few midgies. After another 30 seconds both and I had to do a runner. These timings are not an exaggeration, easily the worst midgies this year (so far).

Overcast, damp and cool conditions are the worst for midgies.

I was delighted to find a clump of these flowers near to the house.

Bugle - Glasair Choille - Ajuga reptans

Bugles are part of the Lamiaceae family, commonly known as Mint. That the Bugles are growing together isn't a surprise, as they spread using ground level runners. Unusually the leaves & stems on these Bugles are nearly hairless.

This one is a bit of a cheat.

Bog cotton - Caoin-cheann - Eriophorum angustifolium

The flowers of bog cotton are dull red-brown colour, and it is the resultant seed heads that are visually stunning. So, not a wildflower in the strict sense.

These are very common in peat bog areas, and we have plenty of those in the . Photo was taken at the end of May.

in 1846
A Free Church congregation in Strontian, Ardnamurchan, launched their floating church.

The local laird refused them permission to build a church on his land, so they "crowdfunded" £1,400 to get a Clyde shipbuilder to make a floating church. The church was moored in Loch Sunart & was 80ft long & 24ft wide. It could hold a congregation of 400.

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