Following a baptism of fire in local newspapers I joined The Herald in 2003. I write features for all areas of the paper with a particular interest in reportage pieces and real life stories, both quirky and compelling. I'm also interested in health and wellbeing and in Scotland's great outdoors. My career low was, as a cub reporter, being sent to the official opening of a set of traffic lights. My most memorable job was travelling to Bosnian mountain villages to interview survivors of genocide.
Light from the lantern she is swinging falls upon a rectangular shape in the corner. She drags the coffin across the windowless room with surprising ease. Closer inspection reveals that it is made of sturdy cardboard. Emblazoned with a colourful motif, she designed it herself and in it she intends to make her final journey.
"The neighbours think I'm off my head," says Chalmers, who grew up on a farm in Dumfriesshire but now lives in a tenement flat on Glasgow's south side.
But, for the 81-year-old, it marked a particularly outstanding achievement as he had just been awarded his eighth degree.
Over the last 35 years, Mr Stephen has studied for two BAs, two MA (Hons), an LLB, a BD, a Phd and yesterday received an MLitt.
He said: "I started out to achieve the old mediaeval trilogy of being proficient in the arts, law and divinity and I did that.
"I'm not a first class honours individual but I got 2:1s and one of my tutors said, 'Come back and push it up a bit more'."
There is a distinct fairy-tale ambience surrounding Knockvennie, a detached villa in the leafy heart of Bearsden. Perhaps it is the watchful dragon perched on the corner of the roof or maybe it's the cryptic inscriptions around the sundial on the terrace, or the tiny lions roaring from a nook high in the hallway. Together, they create an evocative home with traces of a bygone era in every corner.