A little tour

Matilda stamping on sand castles

Today’s guest picture shows that Matilda is a chip off the Attila the Gardener block when it come to destructive power.  It was taken by Matilda’s mother Clare.

Matilda stamping on sand castles

We have been very lucky with our holiday weather.  It hasn’t been as warm as the sunny pictures would suggest, with the temperature hanging around the 12 degree C mark but if we could find a sheltered spot, it has been very pleasant and the views of sea, sand and sky have been perfect all week.

Today continued in the same vein but after the excitements of yesterday, we had a quieter day today.

I went out to get a newspaper and passed a well tended council flower garden which is a credit to the town.

North Berwick flower bed

While Matilda and her father braved the wind on the beach, Mrs Tootlepedal and I went for a cup of coffee in a very superior coffee roaster’s cafe.  It was hipster chic writ large but the coffee was very good so we were quite happy, if a bit out of place.

We walked down the High Street on our way back to the flat and I saw another example of how well the town is looked after.

North Berwick high Street

When we got back, Matilda had returned from the beach and snap and pelmanism were once again popular activities and this took us up to lunch.

After lunch, Matilda has a snooze so Mrs Tootlepedal and I got our bicycles out and pedalled off to visit a garden centre some five miles inland.

We passed a slightly surprised alpaca….


…and many substantial farm houses.

East lothian farm house

Compared with our own part of Scotland, this is well off country with really good agricultural land.  One benefit was the excellent condition of the minor roads that we cycled along.  Of course they don’t have large scale commercial forestry here so the roads aren’t pounded by enormous timber wagons which helps.

We reached the garden centre and made some modest but judicious purchases and then cycled back by a different route heading into the wind.  The country offers extensive views….

East lothian farm

…and it was a delight to pedal along the quiet roads.  The field of rape in the picture must have been in full flower because we had been able to recognise that it was there from over a mile away.  Mind you, the strong wind would have helped.

We were grateful for a substantial wall round an elegant park as we got near to the town…

Leuchie House

…as it provided much needed shelter from the cross winds.  By coincidence, the house in the park is a high quality respite care home and on this occasion, the respite was greatly welcomed by the elderly.

We enjoyed a final swoop down into the town.

After a break for a cup of tea, we went down to the beach with Matilda and her father.  The tide was very high and the wind was strong so there wasn’t much space or demand for castle building.  I got a call from the garage to say that our car had been finally repaired so Alistair drove me out to pick it up while Mrs Tootlepedal and Matilda wisely dug a large hole in the sand for Matilda to sit in to get some shelter.

I drove the car back with a light heart (and an even lighter wallet) and went to the beach again.  Matilda’s parents had bought her a small box of flying objects earlier in the holiday and it included a very flimsy and small plastic assemble-it-yourself kite.

Her mother had assembled the kite and after some trial and error, I had rigged up the strings so we thought that we might try it out.  We had no real hope that the thing would fly at all but it surprised us by soaring into the sky at the first attempt.

Matilda's kite
Ready, steady….
Matilda's kite

Mrs Tootlepedal had bought a steak pie for our tea from a high class butcher in the High Street and the consumption of this rounded off our quiet day very well.

No flying birds today so I’ll cheat and show 150,000 at a distance.  I will miss the Bass Rock a lot when we go home.

Bass Rock

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

24 thoughts on “A little tour

  1. A beautiful vacation coming to a close; thank you for taking your readers along! I will remember this place, should I ever have the opportunity to visit Scotland.

    Kite flying is an enjoyable activity, and it sounds like you had good breezy weather for that.

  2. Our daughters always insisted on kites being flown but as soon as they (the kites) were aloft the girls got bored and wandered off. I shall miss seeing the Bass Rock on your posts too!

  3. A fabulous photo of Matilda in mid-stomp! Glad you have your car back – knock wood that it behaves itself from now on.

  4. It looks a beautiful part of the country and I’m glad to see Matilda is up for fighting back against our Norman overlords with her castle stomping 😉

  5. I used to build elaborate sand castles and then let the kids stomp them. That was a large part of their beach fun. I never flew a kite though. I wish I’d thought of it.
    This is a beautiful place. I’m sure leaving wasn’t easy but at least there are no car worries.

    1. Flying kites has always been part of our family fun. We acquired a wonderful ex air force box kite in the fifties and I Have always liked kites since then

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