Cycle trip.

Before returning to the UK we promised ourselves that we would make walking and cycling a regular part of our lives. So far we are averaging 2 trips a week, which at the moment with lots to do in the house and garden I feel very pleased about.

We both lived in this area as youngsters and have memories of heading off with our friends on cycle trips to various places in the locality. One of the places we’d both frequented was a stretch of coast called Boar’s Head, after the rocky outcrop just offshore from it.

As not such a fit youngster I wasn’t sure how I’d fair on this 13 mile round trip!

A welcome rest!

After a short spell on the narrow tarmac road we reached Lossie Forest and were pleasantly surprised at the smooth forest track. The sun was warm on my face, the birds were flitting around the trees and we virtually had the place to ourselves. I was glad we had made the effort to get out.

In 1940 it was decided that coastal defences were needed in this part of Scotland as there was a fear that the Germans would invade from Norway. At Boar’s Head you can still see the remains of the Gun Battery that was built here. As a child I always felt a mixture of excitement and eeriness when playing around these reminders of a war that was still very fresh in my parents minds.

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Sitting in front of a pillbox.

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The lookout.

Beforehand I checked out the Geocache site and found there were 5 hidden in the general area. I managed to ‘bag’ 3 so felt a great sense of achievement all round.

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Geocache beside a line of tank defence blocks.

Earlier in the week my father had been telling me how his uncle who had been a builder didn’t think these blocks would last very long as they had been constructed using the beach sand instead of builders sand! 70 years later, apart from a few they look in pretty good shape!

Interesting salt patterns have 'grown' on many of the blocks.

Interesting salt patterns have ‘grown’ on many of the blocks. I think these look like a pair of dancing witches!

After a small picnic of cheese, crackers and of course some chocolate like in days gone by we headed home.

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I was pleasantly surprised at how much energy I still had by the time I got home and ‘touch wood’ I haven’t felt any aches and pains —-so far!

Inspired by our successful ‘expedition’ we are now watching the weather forecast for the next nice day to head off on another ‘memory lane’ trip.

 

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A new knitting project- Slippers.

On a recent trip to the Lake District I was charmed by the endearing Herdwick lambs. Sadly, the wool from the sheep is too coarse for knitting but in a shop dedicated to sheep things I found some lovely 100% British Wool called Herdy. I just had to have some as a momento of my trip.

Herdwick sheep and lambs.

Returning home I had a pair of socks for my niece’s fiancĂ© to finish before I could get to ‘play’ with my new wool. A few months ago I printed off a free Ravelry pattern for slippers using chunky wool so decided to try it out with my Herdy wool. After trying 3 different sizes of needles I still couldn’t get the gauge right so had a few brain aches trying to work out the correct number of stitches. The first slipper was slow going due to having to make adjustments but the second was ‘a breeze’. I’m thrilled with my finished slippers and my mother has already hinted at a pair which I’m more than happy to knit for her. There is more than enough wool left for her pair too.

Herdy slippers.

The original pattern can be found at http://www.Ravelry.com and is called Non-felted slippers by Yuko Nakamura Designs