Pics. Of Scotland….. Who Can You Turn To?....... From ‘Free Tibet’….

by Bernie Bell - 10:49 on 05 June 2023

Pics. Of Scotland…

From the 26th of May to the 2nd of June 2023…


I like Al Simpson’s anthropomorphic tree support!

Re. the pic. by Gordon Macrae – on the subject of the comparative size of Liners and Ferries….


…when small is beautiful – and more useful!

We have good memories of our stay in Stornoway…




Who Can You Turn To?

I read this….


….and decided to ‘go public’ with our own tale of when a ‘rescue’ service lets you down.

First – I’ll mention that Mike is signed off work with Hyper-tension and is supposed to avoid stress.

On the evening of Friday the 19th of May, Mike was coming home with our Friday chippy tea, when our car conked out at the traffic lights in Finstown.  He called the AA around 7:30 pm.

After a long wait (maybe 20-25 minutes or so) he spoke to a very helpful lady who took the details and was careful to confirm his location (he was unable to access internet).  He explained that he needed to get home to take some medication and she reassured him that his breakdown would be prioritised. Not long after the call he received texts and a voice message saying that the local AA representative would be with him by 9:40 pm.

While Mike was marshalling folk round his broken down car, the traffic lights stuck on red - so he had to deal with the traffic too.

Coincidentally, our car was located right outside the drive to the house of the son and daughter-in-law of the owner of the local AA garage, and they kindly asked was Mike alright.  He told them the AA had been called and that the garage owner was, presumably, on his way. 

Some time later (after 9:00 pm) the man he’d been talking with came to the car to say that his Dad had not been contacted by the AA, so had been unaware that Mike was waiting for assistance.  To cut a long story short, the two of them very quickly mobilised – the garage owner got the car bump-started and taken to the garage, while his son took Mike home where he arrived maybe around or after 9:30 pm. 

Thank goodness for living in Orkney, and for the kindness of Orcadians.  Otherwise Mike would have been left wondering where the breakdown assistance was that was promised for 9:40 pm, and would have had to go through the long rigmarole of phoning the AA again and would likely not have been attended to much before 11:00 pm.  As it was, the experience was not good for his health – his  medication was becoming increasingly overdue and he would have found further delay very hard to deal with.

On arriving home, having taken his medication and eaten a long-delayed meal, Mike thought to check that the AA were aware of him being rescued, and made use of the web-link for tracking the AA response – at this point (around 10:20 pm) the information was that attendance was expected in the next few minutes! 

Then Mike’s phone rang and it was a man from the AA.  He was aware of the situation and apologised that Mike  had had to make his own arrangements for attendance. 

Mistakes happen.   In this case it could have been serious, but fortunately Mike was able to stay calm through the experience – for others, with different health conditions and more urgent need of medication, it might have been a great deal more serious.  

It knocked him badly though - totally exhausted on Saturday and Sunday - still not back to even his usual energy levels by Thursday.

Mike wrote to the AA, but we still haven’t heard back from them.  If we don’t hear back soon, I believe that we can take this to the Ombudsman – the problem being that our state of health means that taking on something like that is the last thing we need. Particularly the last thing Mike needs – due to the diagnosis of Hyper-tension – which is what he’s taking the medication for.

Then we see the current ads. for the AA on the telly – with a glowing cloak of security around the family in the car, and I say ********!


From ‘Free Tibet’….

“Since the Protect Tibet's Children campaign launched in April 2022, supporters like you have helped drive it forward with success and success following. Foreign ministers, UN human rights experts and media have all heard our call for action and now we have are sights on world leaders.

In September, Presidents and Prime Ministers will meet in Delhi for the G20 summit and we think the time is right to demand that these world leaders call for China’s residential boarding school system in Tibet to be shut down. Will you add your name to our petition calling on them to take firm joint action concerning China’s colonial boarding schools?

Why do we think the time is right? Let’s look back of the past 12 months:

In May last year, over 19,000 people signed our petition demanding that UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, speak up for human rights in Tibet. After four years of silence, she finally raised China's human rights abuses in Tibet.

In November, after our petition was handed to the G7 governments ahead of their meeting, the ministers expressed their concerns about China's policies in Tibet in their statements.

In February this year, the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights called for the boarding schools to be shut down. Since then, the German parliament and a growing number of MPs in different countries, including the UK, have spoken out against China's policy.


Add My Name to the Petition >>

Over 900,000 Tibetan children separated from their families. Tibetan-language schools torn down. Teachers arrested and imprisoned. 

In these schools, children are cut off from their homes, their families, their language and their way of life. They are taught to reject their heritage, elders and even their own parents; to be ashamed of their cultural background.

Tibetan children are being deliberately targeted with the boarding school system. The Chinese government's own figures show that for all students in China, only 14% of rural school children are in boarding schools, compared to 80% in the so-called 'Tibet Autonomous Region'. 

This is discrimination, and nothing less than an attempt to wipe out the identity of an entire country. Only decisive action will halt this cruel, colonial boarding school system. The future of Tibet is at stake.

Take Action >>

Thank you,

John Jones
Campaigns, Policy and Research Manager”


My view….


This has happened before, to the Native people of North America and Canada….

And Africa…


And is now happening in the Ukraine….



Here’s one I made earlier… https://theorkneynews.scot/2021/09/11/remembering/


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