Today’s picture shows an interesting cake which Dropscone picked up for an extremely modest price when coming through Hawick yesterday evening. I thought that it looked unnervingly like a set of frogs peering out of a very muddy pond which may have affected my ability to truly enjoy my slice.
Freezing temperatures again put paid to morning cycling but I put the time to good use by marking up a table of golf fixtures for putting onto Dropscone’s BGA website and putting some more of the newspaper index into the database. This took me until the great man himself arrived for a cup of coffee bringing the cake with him. The cake certainly contained enough calories to keep us cycling for several weeks and Mrs Tootlepedal had a taste and pronounced it very good.
A chaffinch watched from the plum tree as we nibbled and sipped.
It was another brilliantly sunny day so after coffee, I finished off entering the week of the index and then set off for a walk in the sunshine. I left the river behind today and walked up the hill behind our house before heading along a track towards a wood.
I followed the track down through the woods, crossed the Becks Burn and emerged into the sunshine again on the other side.
At this stage, the battery on my camera gave out and you are spared all the other interesting pictures that I might have taken on my walk home. In fact, I was lucky and didn’t see anything very exciting so I wasn’t too sad about the battery.
I had a look round the garden for new flowers when I got home but had to settle on this exuberantly red rhubarb sprout for my splash of colour.
Mrs Tootlepedal is in cycling mode at the moment so after lunch (and a quick look at the birds)…
…we packed the bikes into the back of the Kangoo and drove down to Longtown, just over the border into England. We were going to do a circular route in largely flat country.
We started by adding to my recent collection of churches by passing the substantial parish church at Arthuret.
For those interested in history, I append a snippet from a Wikipedia article on Arthuret:
The site of the church overlooks the site of the Battle of Arfderydd, which appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth’s Vita Merlini and also the Annales Cambriae in the year 573. The battle took place very early in the reign of the King of Strathclyde, Rhydderch Hael, (patron of St. Kentigern, and Myrddin’s supposed brother-in-law), between the Warlord Gwenddoleu ap Ceidio and his cousins Peredur and Gwrgi, Princes of either Ebrauc (Modern York), or possibly from Gwynedd. In this battle, Gwenddoleu loses his life, and it is not known if one of his brothers, Nudd and Caw, survived to succeed him as king of Arfderydd afterwards.
I hope that is clear.
We pedalled on and took a cycle path along an old railway line which took us over the river Lyne…
…on this bridge
This track is part of National Cycle Route 7 and one of the few off road cycle tracks suitable for ordinary bicycles in our vicinity.
We got to the end of the brief track and pedalled on across the A7 where we had to face an annoying wind for the next seven miles.
I noticed an elegant summer house in a garden at Alstonby…
…and once we had crossed the Brampton road and back over the river Lyne again, I could see Kirklinton Church on the other side of the river.
The road wound along the top of a small escarpment above the river through some very pretty country and if it hadn’t been for the nagging wind in our faces, it would have been cycling heaven. An especially nice shack caught my eye…
It shared a field with a brown object.
Other livestock was available.
There were a great many very pretty mature trees beside the road as we cycled on and I stopped to take a shot of Mrs Tootlepedal passing a typical specimen.
Mercifully, the last three miles were slightly downhill, with the wind now behind us and we completed the twelve mile circuit in good style. However, Mrs Tootlepedal was slightly miffed to find that we had arrived after the cafes in Longtown had closed. Bad planning.
We enjoyed the change from our usual routes and if the weather is good, we hope to extend our cycling to other new areas in the spring.
In the evening, Susan came and fetched me and we went to Carlisle for our recorder group session. We were five tonight and we played well which made the music more enjoyable than ever and rounded off an excellent day for me. Mrs Tootlepedal had gone to the pictures in the Buccleuch Centre with two friends while I was tootling and had a good time watching a film of an extravagant concert in Maastricht by Andre Rieu which she had enjoyed a great deal. He is a real crowd pleaser.
The flying bird of the day was another chaffinch (surprise, surprise) caught in the shadows before the sun got round to the feeder.
P.S. I took this half moon in the early evening yesterday and forgot to put it in. I thought it was worth a post.