Friday’s journey was difficult as we drove to Edinburgh after my mother’s funeral. I had been reminded about her love of travelling (and the 35 photograph albums that resulted) and also her love of music and reading which I share. Talking to my aunt afterwards resurrected the family story that we are descended from gypsies – I still have to find any evidence for in my genealogical research. Inevitably we were physically and emotionally tired, it was dark and the motorway was very busy in Cheshire and south Lancashire. We eventually arrived, had a quick meal and slept. The highlight of Saturday was the Radical Book Fair (more books purchased) and a talk by the Minimalists. I am already trying to reduce the enormous pile of stuff we have accumulated in 20 years of living in the same place but it is a very slow process. I am part way through reducing my work hours and looking at what I can give back as well as pursuing my passions but this is a journey still being travelled. Today we visited the Secret Herb Garden in Old Pentland for the first time and I had hoped to go to Dawyck arboretum to see the autumn colours but with high winds and driving rain, decided just to carry on. The bushes and hedges lining the B roads through the borders were weighed down with berries and had it not been so wet there would have been some great photography opportunities. In Langholm I spotted a sign above a cafe – ‘Pelosis Corner Cafe’ which minus an apostrophe, sounds like a medical condition rather than the proprietor’s name. We had had to buy the Independent en route to see if the letter I had sent last week had been published and it was there in black and white. The last time I had one in a paper was 1990-something.