Monday, 11 June 2018

Slow doon June!

It's happening again. All the adventures and photos are mounting up. Well you know it's been sunny and we've been cycling and running...that's the summary anyway. But going into greater detail; last Saturday we went for a run round Gullane. There weren't a whole lot of butterflies but there were splendid poppies and a plethora of dragonflies at the Marl Loch, which saw Peter giving in to temptation and wading into the murky, weedy water to get a good shot of them. I wasn't for getting eaten alive so I ran on. It was a very still day and it seemed like an ideal day for a swim, so we went in when we were finished. The sea was still, but it was also surprisingly cold. I had worn my shorty wetsuit because it had seemed more than adequate a week or two before, but I got pretty chilled pretty quickly so came out again after less than half a mile of swimming.

The next day we had to plan another cycle. I was afraid we'd run out of ideas but actually they seem to be coming thicker and faster. Peter was now tuned into this dragonfly thing and he had heard there were some excellent ponds at Saltoun Big Wood. "Saltoun" is one of the names on the signs we've started to see regularly as we've been cycling around East Lothian, so it seemed a good enough idea to cycle to the Big Wood and then (my idea) onward to The Lanterne Rouge at Gifford. Every good cycling day out requires a good cafe stop and I'd been hearing very good things about this particular cafe. I'm not complaining but we'd set off kind of late - so just usual for us - and we spent an awful lot of time in the woods. It was a big wood. There were excellent ponds and although we didn't see much in the way of dragonflies we did see many tadpoles and a whole lot of newts. You could live on a house on stilts in the woods fairly easily I reckon.

Nearly 3 already - chances of getting to the cafe getting slimmer.

Eventually we emerged out of the woods and set off for Gifford but it was well after 4pm  and we realised there was little chance the LR would still be open, so we took another road for Haddington in hopes of catching Falkos. We arrived there just 3 minutes after it had closed for the night. So we went to a pub and had a pot of tea and a bag of crisps each - so the 2nd cycle in a row where we'd ended up eating crisps instead of goodies. Humph. I like goodies.

Then a week went by and it was Saturday again. We both slept in big time. Peter had been back to the Big Wood and this time had his fill of Dragonflies, arriving home triumphant and filthy well after 8pm.

So the next day we set off to Gullane again. Well what's the point of going to lots of different places if the same place throws up something new and good every week? Peter was kind of planning to do Traprain Law Hill race, but he'd fallen on the steps at Waverley station the night before and now his knee was all stiff. Plan A. was that we were going to go a run and then I'd drop him off at East Linton, but his knee was still kind of sore, especially on the downhills, so we just took our time. We headed east instead of west for a change and ran down through Archerfields to the beach. In the van on the way there, amongst all the chatter about the Big Woods and the Dragonflies, Peter was predicting what we'd see. "What d'ya think we'll see today? Cinnabar moths?"
I resisted this push to see the future. Experience tells me these predictions lead to expectation in very little time, and then hot on the heels of expectation comes disappointment. Why not just relax and see what's there?

Well there were more poppies.

And there was a spider with a green 'hing.

and a boat

and a lighthouse and...

A Cinnabar Moth!!!! 

Dressed all elegant like Dracula.

And after that we went to the Jimmy Saville Woods to see if there were any Speckled Woods and...
There were!!!

Then we had a little paddle and bathed the remains of my injury and Peter's sore knee.

Damn I'm tiring now. Bet you are too. Just one more to go. 

Another Sunday. This time I'm going to get to the Lanterne Rouge if it kills me. We're going there FIRST mister, no arguments. We went directly there - and it was still 3pm by the time we got there. We're just not an early morning team unless we have to be. This cycling thing is getting easier though. It takes very little effort to get organised to go. Inside the Lanterne Rouge there are delicious sweet lemony flap-jack things on the counter. I WANT THAT!!! says me, Little Britain style. I think I'm a bit low blood sugar. And a delicious mug of coffee. I think Peter opts for rhubarb cake and coffee too. In the corner sits Robin, husband or partner of Anna Henly. I've met him once but Peter knows him much better. Peter chats to Robin and I eat sweet lemony biscuity flap-jack as if my life depended on it. The coffee is delicious too, but it's quite late in the day so I turn down a refill. Oh my God, Peter is accepting a refill. Holy Shit. Pretty soon he is in full voice, and then for quite some time afterwards. We set off for Butterdean woods which Peter has skirted through on his adventure to the Big Wood the other day. He wanted to return for a closer look. He sort of marches me around all the paths very fast and talking a lot. He's disappointed because there are no ponds and therefore no dragonflies. "I can't help thinking there should be ponds!" he tells me. It is well-late by the time we emerge from the woods, it's 6.30pm and we're both starving. 3 miles into our journey home Peter complains the saddle on his bike is shoogly - I suggest he see if he can tighten it and as he tries this our it comes off in his hands; sheared off at the nut. So he has to stand in his pedals the whole way home. Lucky he'd had that extra coffee. I did offer to take a turn but he turned me down, declaring my bike "stinky".

Poor wee sausage. Unbearably cute fox cub.

It was 10pm before we had our tea. I'm a bit tired today.

Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Lovely, sunny May.

I'm not really sure why I haven't blogged at all since half way through May. The weather has been lovely and I took a week off my NHS work too. My leg's getting a lot better and because of the rest both legs are feeling fresher than they have in a good while.  I'm trying to keep doing some cycling and keeping my mileage down so as not to re-injure myself. I've not heard anything more about my heart and I hope it's not irresponsible to say so but the thought of sudden cardiac death kind of spices up what otherwise might be a fairly mundane run...

I've been up in the Pentlands which was nice, and....

I went a wee run to Porty, which was nice, and...

Another run at Gullane on a day when the wind was making the wispy clouds make the sky look astonishing, and...

We went a cycle up the canal and then down to Blackness Castle along by the shore. This was a good adventure in terms of finding new routes and seeing the big pink bings close up. It wasn't a good adventure for food though. We ended up starving and had to buy whatever we could find in the National Trust shop at Blackness Castle (we were starting to shout at each other - uh-oh, low blood sugar) - which was crisps, fudge and vending machine coffee. The point of a good cycle is to eat something nice in a cafe.

I was on a course over the weekend so was very pleased I wasn't working Monday. The sun came out and Peter and I went back to the coast. He got immersed in the Marl Loch and involved with some dragon-flies while I headed to the shore because I was just too damn hot.

Here he comes at last.