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August 2010 Archives

August 10, 2010

Scotland on Sunday publishes my Bergen piece

I didn't buy Scotland on Sunday yesterday because I didn't expect my Bergen piece to be in. However, the whole Spectrum magazine turned up by post today, complete with Fay Weldon ("What women want") on the front cover and there it was: pages 34 and 35 devoted to my Bergen piece, but sadly supported only by three agency photos. My own Bergen images had been ignored, though for me they had acquired special value after I'd mysteriously lost them from the SD card, then recovered them using PhotoRescue: think prodigal son.

Meanwhile, thanks to a specialist photographic forum, I have just discovered how the mysterious loss almost certainly occurred: on planes in general, especially at high altitude and latitude, memory cards of all kinds (solid-state memory) are vulnerable to cosmic radiation, especially if the card is powered up as when the camera is in use. The solution is either to avoid taking photos on a plane or, if you need to, use a separate spare card for the purpose. That way the images you have just captured while away are not at risk, because the card is much less vulnerable when not powered up. An even better solution may be to store the precious memory cards in a shielded case: a couple of mm of lead should work. But there must be an opportunity for somebody to market a neater solution?

Meantime I've just ordered a camera connection kit for my iPad so I can back up the photos before getting on the plane. And I won't be weeding out dud pix on a plane in future!

August 17, 2010

Amy starts school

Today was a landmark in my grand-daughter's life. She started her school career, at Dunblane Primary School. She looks much smarter in her school uniform than I ever did:


Mother Helen had to fight quite hard to get her in, because Amy's birthday falls in early March and in Scotland the cutoff date is 28 February. Because Amy was, this August, therefore fractionally short of the magic 4 years 6 months, it was an uphill struggle involving an early entry request. Her nursery school had never supported one of these before, though it had experience of deferral requests from parents who felt their child wasn't ready and wanted to delay by a year. But Amy is a confident, outgoing child, rapidly becoming rather too big a fish in the small nursery pond, where she has been full-time for over two years.

So far, she seems to be taking "big school" in her stride. Stirling Council seemed unable to see past the strong tide of professional opinion against "early entry", its officer making dire prophecies that "she'll never catch up", "she won't cope with older children" or "what happens when she's at top end of primary and her friends are becoming teenagers?". This attitude seemed to ignore all the pressure that make children tend to "act up" in accordance with expectations, not to mention the huge variation in size, maturity and behaviour at any given age. Anyway, today she seems cheerily unaffected by all the fuss.


I am confident that her mother did the right thing by defending her right to start school. Since her mother knows her better than anyone, the Council was right to give way (eventually)! Early entry wouldn't work for every child, indeed we considered it and decided against in Helen's own case, but children vary enormously. Here are wise mother and cheery child, relaxing together after school.


About August 2010

This page contains all entries posted to Jacquetta in August 2010. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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