Three score and seven

Today’s guest picture comes from Dropscone who has been in Glasgow getting a knee checked out.  He took the opportunity to sample the Glasgow underground train service, popularly known as the ‘Clockwork Orange’.

Glasgow underground

We woke to a beautiful sunny morning today but the late September downside was in evidence in the form of a layer of ice on the car window with the temperature at 2°C.  That was too cold for me to go cycling as I have already had one bad experience with a patch of ice on a sunny day this and I definitely don’t want another.

Mrs Tootlepedal went off for a fund raising coffee morning with friends and I hung about until the temperature hit 5°, finally getting going a bit later than was intended.

The wait was worth it though as it was a perfect morning for cycling, with light winds and hardly a cloud in the sky.

Callister road new lines

The newly surfaced road at Callister has got a sparkling fresh white line and was looking at its best.

I cycled through Gair and Eaglesfield and joined the old A74, going north through Ecclefechan…


..which is notable both as the birthplace of Thomas Carlyle, the sage of Ecclefechan, and the home of the world famous Ecclefechan Tart.

I kept going north until I passed the biggest wood burning stove in Dumfriesshire…

Wood burning power station

…where I turned west to cross the River Annan, passing the delightful Applegarth Church…

Applegarth Church

…and a charming cottage with its own clock tower at Millhousebridge just before I crossed the river.


I must say that if I had a clock tower on my house, I would keep the clock running on time.

Once over the river, I turned south and had a stop for a roll and a banana beside the Mill Loch in Lochmaben.

Mill Loch Lochmaben

I found a bench in a sheltered spot beside the loch…


…and ate my roll beside Weigela and Himalayan balsam flowers.

wiegela and balasam

I pedalled on southwards  to the little village of Dalton where they had a really good idea in 2000….

Dalton handprints

…though the tiles are getting a bit discoloured with age.

My tour continued as I passed beneath the Repentance Tower at Hoddom…

Repentance Tower

…and then I followed the course of the river Annan down to the town of Annan.

Having crossed the fine bridge there, I was blown home by a friendly wind, stopping only to admire a fireless engine at the Devil’s Porridge museum at Eastriggs….

Fireless engine Eastriggs
A fireless engine is a very good idea in a large munitions factory.

…and an even larger quantity of migrating geese than last time in a field near the border..

geese in field
The noise was ferocious.

…with a few swans  keeping themselves to themselves at the other end of the field.

swans in field

Those interested may find further details of the ride by clicking on the map below.

garmin route 28 Sept 2018

The skies clouded over for the last part of the ride and I was glad to have been well wrapped up to counter the chill at the beginning of the outing. I was able to shed a few layers as I went round though.

Mrs Tootlepedal had had a busy day with the coffee morning followed by some serious gardening in the afternoon.  This involved a lot of digging as part of the new plan for the top of the vegetable garden.

After a cup of tea and a look at the feeder, which I had to fill as it had obviously been busy during the day…

busy feeder

..I went out to inspect the works and take a picture or two of things that had survived the chilly morning.

floodlit fuchsia
The fuchsias continue to shine.
triple special grandma
More Special Grandmas have come out
late september flowers
The last of the yellow crocosmia, a small rudbeckia and a late burst of phlox.

Mrs Tootlepedal made herself some very good looking courgette fritters for her evening meal and I cooked up a calorie heavy dish of macaroni cheese to make sure that I didn’t fade away after my cycling efforts.  (In fact, there is no chance of that as I am at my winter weight already and winter hasn’t even begun.)

The TV provided Gardener’s World and highlights from an exciting day of golf in France to give us both a good excuse to sit down and put our feet up in the evening.

The flying bird of the day is a sparrow.

flying sparrow





Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

27 thoughts on “Three score and seven

  1. Those tarts sound much like our butter tarts, except we usually use raisins. Currants don’t seem to abound here. Regardless, the tarts are dangerously delicious and must be carefully meted out if you hope to walk instead of waddle!

  2. Lots of interesting history on this ride, and lots of beautiful views too.
    I’ve never heard of the world famous Ecclefechan tart or the biggest woodstove, or even the repentence tower, but I like the name.
    The handprint tiles reminded me of putting my own hand in a pie plate full of plaster in grade school. After it dried my father hung it on the wall.

  3. Oh, that cottage with the clock tower. I might have to use a cottage like that in one of my books. The question is, what will happen when the clock starts working again?

  4. I’m glad that you stopped during your ride as often as you did so that the rest of us could enjoy the sights that you saw. I’d never heard of a fireless engine before, but it does make sense for use near a munitions factory. It may be that the cost of repairing the clock is prohibitive for the people who own the house with the clock tower, at least the clock is right twice a day. 😉

  5. I have actually gotten back on my bike after 7 years! I can’t believe it has been that long, and I did feel a bit uneasy, but bit by bit. In 2011, I fell and broke a rib. That had followed being with my dog and being attacked by a huge dog, so getting back on made me remember those feelings! But I will persevere.

  6. It’s amazing how many new interesting places you find to photograph and share. Lovely cycle ride in beautiful countryside. The ‘tart’ recipe looks good but the Burns poem is beyond me!

  7. Ach, I like your wood-burning stove!
    “140,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases displaced”
    Your picture of the fuchsia prompted me to check on my little start from a cutting. It finally appears to be happy in its new location as the leaves have taken on more green and it has sprouted some new branches. Sometimes it seems to take a year or so for the plants to get acclimated and put out roots!

  8. We had a light frost here last night. The porch thermometer read 35, but out in the garden and pinot vineyard is can run 4 degrees cooler. Squash, tomatoes and newly sprouting potatoes showed some frost burn.

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