Farewell to sun, sea and sand

river trent at nottingham

Today’s guest picture comes from my brother Andrew who was beside the river on a sunny day in Nottingham.

river trent at nottingham

For our last day beside the sea in East Lothian, we got continuous sunshine.  This was very welcome.  I put my nose out of the back gate to check the temperature…

Bent grass NB

…and found that it was still a little chilly with the wind coming off the North Sea.  Still, it was warm enough for us to go along for a coffee on the terrace of the Seabird Centre at the harbour where we enjoyed the company of a one legged gull…

one legged gull NB

…standing on a sculpture of a seal.

Then, to our great delight, we saw a real seal swimming along just off the shore.  I took many pictures but I only had the Lumix with me and for all its merits, taking long distance pictures of moving objects is not one of them.  This was my best effort…

not a seal NB

…but I can assure you that there was a seal underneath that ripple.

Not long afterwards we saw several groups of what we took to be porpoises heading across towards the Bass Rock.  They were further out and I didn’t even manage to get a ripple from them.  All the same, it was very good value for the price of a cup of coffee.

We then went down to the beach where the wildlife was more co-operative.

eiders MB
Eider ducks
cormorants NB
Cormorants in a typical pose

Matilda soon got down to the business of castle building…

matilda at the seaside (3)

….with a willing band of helpers.

holiday family NB (2)

As you can see, she was working hard…

matilda at the seaside (2)

….and her helpers felt quite exhausted watching her.

holiday family NB

Sadly, the tide which was coming in and against which the castle and its ramparts had been built, decided to turn back several yards before it reached the castle so Matilda gave up work and devoted herself to having fun.

matilda at the seaside

And then we went for lunch.   It had been a hard morning.

After lunch, the rest of the party returned to the beach where Matilda and her father paddled in the sea and her mother and grandmother did not.

I went out on my new bike for twenty miles.   The roads were still good and the views were satisfying..,..

view near athelstanford (4)

view near athelstanford (3)

view near athelstanford (2)

And I even saw another doocot at Dirleton Castle.  The castle itself is hidden behind the trees.

doocot in dirleton

The beach party had returned by the time that I got back and after a pause, we set out to have our last holiday meal in the town.  We topped it off with a North Berwick ice cream and then Matilda and her parents packed themselves and their belongings into their car and headed back to Edinburgh where they had an early start planned for a day full of activities tomoorow.

Mrs Tootlepedal and I took a final walk along the rocks at the harbour where the eider ducks seemed to have had a disagreement and were sitting apart.

MB eider male

NB eider female

Out at sea two yachtsmen stopped for a chat.

NB sailors

The light was fading as we went back to the cottage.

sunset NB

We have had a good week with plenty of sunshine and endless fun on the beach and the bonus of 60 miles on the bike for me, including two bike outings with Mrs Tootlepedal.

This will be the last flying herring gull of the day for some time, I expect.

flying gull (2)

Fittingly, as I wrote this post, we finally got a sunset to give us a proper farewell from North Berwick and the Firth of Forth.

NB sunset


Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

22 thoughts on “Farewell to sun, sea and sand

  1. If those are private homes behind the row of exhausted observers . . . what a lovely place to live. Beautiful paint job on the eider duck.

  2. I enjoyed a chuckle at Matilda’s helpers stretched out so energetically. Sounds like it was a perfect time to be had by all. So glad the weather cooperated for the most part.

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