Sunday, 31 December 2017

Hogmanay happiness and sadness

 Our Tree...with a dog from Bristol, a spoon from Whanganui (and a heart you can just see hanging from the quilt on the left..a quilt made in New Zealand in 2012/33.)
A heart from a dear friend in Derbyshire hangs near the top of the tree.
 Our 'natural' decorations, cones, string, glass baubles,and clove studded oranges (the origin of christmas baubles).

At last I've discovered a frame for Dru Marland's art, below Anthony Evans' linoprint..both images of the valley I used to live in.

All the cards we've received this year have replaced the art that gets hung on the strings!!
 Storm  Dylan kept us awake last night..and roared on until it drew breath about 2pm...then we wrapped up warm and braved the mud of our local nature reserve at Hannahston...past the alpacas who were ensconced safely in their barn!

Next year' crops are coming along...garlic
 red broad beans
 and red onions..
We managed to get hold of a friend and found that his wee dog had died..a Patterdale terrier, about 16 years old . A lovely hound.

Here's hoping for good things in 2018...including a return to New Zealand!!

Friday, 29 December 2017


Wizzard and Partner left the Borders in snow this morning and had a slow drive across to Moffatt and the motorway. Thereafter it was a steady four hour drive home, probably stopping at Tebay, the independant motorway services,for a break. It was good to hear that they'd arrived safely. 

We're looking forward to their next visit already!

We've just returned from the county hospital where the Pirate has been dealt with by the mole-catcher. Three skin tags and one suspicious one dealt with,and we'll need to get a couple on his back seen to next time.  Just something we keep an eye on, as you do.
Its a pity they've stopped doing these procedures at our town hospital, which seemed to be developing  well, with the local town clinics all centralizing there.
To get there is one bus ride to the hospital from our village or 15 minutes drive at the most.
The county hospital on the other hand is a three bus ride...into Ayr, over to Kilmarnock then out to the hospital. Fine,we have a bus pass being 60+...but working people have expensive fares to pay; now people have to work to 67- 70 years old, so have to take a day off just for a short appointment....

It was good that the appointment was late enough in the day that everything had mostly thawed..on the other hand it was dark and raining heavily for the 45 minute drive home. Heavy rain is forecast tomorrow and storm winds on Sunday.
Indoor jobs will be the order all weekend.

Thursday, 28 December 2017

walk in the thaw (?)

 It IS warmer...there is more green to see in the fields...
 but its still cold
 We walked to collect my car..a thorn in the sidewall meant a new tyre,and Pirate broke a wheel stud while changing the wheel to the spare...he also managed to break the windscreen wiper rods (the bits that are under the bonnet) by turning it on while the wipers were frozen to the screen. You'd think he'd be wise enough not to do that! The one night I forget to put the screen saver on!!

Result? Skint again!!
 This is a part of the old village,now demolished, that was a coalmine. The burn runs through the bing (waste tip).....
 rainbow over Drongan
 and rain over Patna (the other side of the hill)
 and still cold here

Tuesday, 26 December 2017

whatever the weather?

 We waved off the Wizzard and partner, then after upgrading my brake cables and bar tape...nice Lizardskin lizards were used...but my hands appreciated it!
 We headed for Alloway through the lanes, dodging the can see two on the other side of the Clyde to Ayr, working their way up the coast of Arran.

Our luck was in until we reached Ayr...
but then as we tried out the new cycle path (aka wide pavement) down the A70 to Coylton...the rain set in...after Coylton we returned to the lanes and the last couple of miles were dry...overhead, anyway.

The Wizzard and partner are now ensconced  in a wooden tent...called a the snowy Borders..ready for another two days' mountain biking. I think they are a little glad that they forgot to pack their tent!!
The East of Scotland has, unlike us,had snow!

Monday, 25 December 2017


We walked to see a housebound friend.

 Past Millmannoch Mill(closed 1970)
 We've had a third more rain than average so far this year..and its not finished yet....
 crackers, hats, tea and shortbread!!
 and nearly 3k back home

we're dreamiing...

Of a white christmas...but we're getting a wet christmas.
Some family has visited before hand...
A  pair of Possees!

and for Xmas and Hogmanay...Pirate, Wizzard and his partner.

We've been walking instead of riding...whether wet or icy it has been safer!

Thanks to the Wizzard I've recharged my garmin, and have even logged a walk on strava!!

Meanwhile we've opened presents and are keeping warm.  Wizzard and partner were supposed to be camping, but forgot to pack their tent! (which is a winter suitable one) they are now trying to organize three nights in a pod ( read "wooden tent"!) by a mountain biking trail in the borders...before returning here when the weather turns wet again!!

It is good to have them here.

Sunday, 24 December 2017

gone again

back to wet and windy

Looking down the Girvan Valley

We did our last gardening job of the year and did our hand delivered cards...on our way home, we was worth it to see the sunset.

Friday, 22 December 2017

Ayr today

 High tide was quite high...
 Another grey day.
 courthouse side door.
 solicitors front door...padlocked!

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

dusk in Ayr

 On and from the Auld Brig

We shopped...briefly...and posted (hopefully) the lasts cards and presents.

One more day of losing the light..then turn to the sun..not that we'll really notice until February..but knowing it helps!

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Another day

 Planes do 'circuits' from Prestwick Airport,a dozen miles away..practising approaches,landings and take-offs.
What a change for today's walk. Wet,windy and still cold,but not freezing.

We had to have a walk...cabin fever had set in!! Luckily it stayed dry for the duration..our village circuit takes us out around the village,past two derelict mills and is nearly four miles long.

Indoors has been productive.  My bike is now winter ready..just need weather fit and safe to go out in.
Door curtains are being sewn to keep the cold out and more decorations made.

Tomorrow there are prints waiting to be titled and filed and some more work getting the rooster prints right.  for some light relief,more curtain hemming and lining!  And if the forecast is right, we may even get out on the bikes!!