Writer's Block: Apocalypse now?
peyto
joycependle
It's the beginning of the end, according to Harold Camping. How will you spend what could be your last day on Earth?

Out to lunch, and then watching the start of The Forsyte Saga on DVD.

Writer's Block: The start of something wonderful
peyto
joycependle
What is your favorite opening line of a book, and why?

"The man who was not Terrence O'Grady had come quietly."
_Agent of Change_  by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller

It poses so many questions: who is the man, who is Terrence O'Grady, what is happening...

Scotland
peyto
joycependle
Monday we had glorious weather, and headed back to the Mull of Galloway. We were tempted to go all the way south to the lighthouse again, but are glad we stuck with the plan to visit Logan Botanical Gardens. They're beautiful! I saw so many plants that my mother used to grow in southern Texas and California. I hadn't expected so many eucalyptus trees, nor guessed that there were so many species of gum tree. I didn't notice such details back in SoCal. We'll be visiting Logan again, but not this year - I walked much further than I had intended to, and not nearly far enough to see everything.

When we left the gardens we went to Logan Fish Pond, but it was closed. It's a sea cave with a hole in its roof (a blow hole) -the laird had live fish were kept there so he could have fresh fish when he wanted them. He also built an open air, salt water swimming pool there.

Tuesday we took a forest road that looked interesting on the map but wasn't. Then we went through Kirkcudbright (church of Cuthbert) and drove down the shore of Kirkcudbright Bay. The tide was right out so we could see what a dangerous place it was for fisherman in small boats. One large sandbank was named "Devil's Thrashing Floor" - it was peppered with boulders and rocky outcroppings. We'll be going back to Ross Bay and Brighouse Bay on the west of Kirkcudbright Bay. They have craggy shores and boulders scattered across their beaches like scree.

A cold wind was blowing and it threatened rain so we ran for home.

Scotland
peyto
joycependle
I took Tuesday as a rest day; DH explored locally. Wednesday we went towards Kirkcudbright (kerr-coo-brie), saw the sea and some fantastically crenellated buildings built by James Brown about 1900 - Corseyard Dairy and Kirkandrews Kirk (google is your friend). Then we went up to Gateway of Fleet to visit the massively over-stocked bookshop at the Mill of Fleet.

Thursday we took the back roads through Galloway Forest Park, first the spectacular one over the hill and dow-ow-own to Girvan, then lunch in Ayr and back through the forest on the less spectacular but still single lane with passing places road. We met very little traffic; two years ago when I drove the Girvan road I met logging trucks - lots.

Today DH climbed Cairnsmore of Fleet, which is nearly a Munro and feels it as the path starts less than a hundred feet above sea level. I thought about exploring the Fleet valley (the Fleet is a rather large burn, nearly a river) but decided to hit the main street shops in Newton Stewart instead. Much fun was had by all.

privacy
peyto
joycependle
I have on occasion cross-posted my own journal entries (the few there are) to facebook, and wish I could remember how to do so now. However, I will never cross-post comments from anyone else's journal to anywhere else.

Scotland
peyto
joycependle
We're back in Scotland after all! In the cottage in Minnigaff, across the River Cree from Newton Stewart. Saturday was cloudy and sometimes wet, but when I woke at 2am the Milky Way was spread over 2/3rds of the sky, clearer than I've seen it since childhood. Sunday was a day of rest, and Monday started as a day of storm. But we headed out regardless, going down to Wigtown (stopping at only one bookshop), over to Port William. In for a penny in for a pound, we went on towards the Mull of Galloway - and the rain stopped at Glenluce. :)) 

The tip of the Mull will be an island soon (geologically speaking). The Irish Sea was showing its power against the sea cliffs. We were glad to take refuge in the coffee house.
http://www.galliecraig.co.uk/
http://mull-of-galloway.co.uk/

Now I've been to the most southerly points of both England and Scotland, and the most northerly point of England (Berwick on Tweed). John of Groats will wait for a while.

(no subject)
peyto
joycependle
Instead of cleaning up after the workmen, and tidying up after ourselves, we're spending a quiet day in the comfy chairs with the newspaper, laptop, and books. Current books: _Europe's Inner Demons_ by Norman Cohn (DH likes serious reading) and John Scalzi's _Old Man's War_ series.

(no subject)
peyto
joycependle
We aren't sure we'll get our usual holiday in Scotland in September, so last week we took off on a short and unplanned break up there - not our usual style at all. We spent the first night in Moffat, which is a holiday resort for Glasgow. It wasn't busy, and there were still patches of snow on the hills. The next day, in beautiful weather, we set off for the Isle of Arran. The Irish Sea was a dark blue with a few white horses kicked up by the rather stiff breeze. The coastal waters were bright blue with shades of green in the shallows - like those unlikely pictures of tropical waters. We drove round and round the island, too excited to stop for long in any one place. The weather was too beautiful to last; we watched the western sky mist over, and a sea fret rose. That night it rained hard and while it didn't rain the next day the air was very moist and the sky was heavy. So after just two nights on Arran we headed for home, stopping for a night with our friends at Hillcrest in Wigtown. The final drive home was through a heat wave (English style) - Moffat and Arran had been in the high 40s and 50s F, the final 3 hours were pushing 80F. After our long cold spring the temperature was suddenly 20 deg F = 10deg C above normal for this time of year. So I've spent a week just resting. In cold rainy weather - the heat wave only lasted 4 days.

Volcano closes UK airspace
peyto
joycependle
It's a beautiful day here, you'd never guess that there's a cloud of volcanic ash overhead at 50,000 feet. Manchester airport has been closed since 6am, and there are two forecasts: flights will resume soon or all Europe will be closed down. Oh, and a third forecast, that the next time it rains it will rain mud.

(no subject)
peyto
joycependle
The Big Freeze is officially over, washed away by two mornings of heavy rain (with gale force winds). There are still patches of ice on the roads and pavements, and there are lines of snow on the fields in hollows and alongside walls. But real life has returned - we are going out to lunch!

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