Monthly Archives: May 2007

a gran dee

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Last week a friend took me down to her house in Catterline, south of Stonehaven. She lives in a 'ben and but?' — a stone house of two rooms with 2 rooms attached for the livestock. Its been remodeled to exclude animals now, though. That's where their kitchen is. Her upstairs windows view the North Sea.

   

We went to see Dunnotar Castle. It was built on a promontory and if you look closely you can see the little windy path to get to it. It is quite imrpressive. And then you can see the beach from the castle too.

castlebeach

It is not a good swimming beach but there were several picnickers there. All kinds of little tide pools with crabs and anemones, etc.

castle 2I took a walk along the cliff path. Yes, really. I only l went far enough to get this picture and walk back again without hysteria. On the path a white bearded hiker passed me saying "a gran dee!" It takes me so long to recognize what people are saying here that he was long passed before I knew he'd said it was A Grand Day! Which it was indeed. He was finishing up a 9 day walk across Scotland at the next town, Stonehaven. People do that here. Go for long, long walks up and down the hills and across country. He was a serious hiker. A great rucksack and two pointy hiking sticks for digging into rocks and sand.

stonehavenfishing harbor

Here's Stonehaven, a quaint little fishing village. Just lovely.

People are starting to build up around these little villages in order to live out in the country even with high tech jobs in town. There's no wondering why. Who would want to live in the city when you can have a view the North Sea out your window?

Besides, the little villages are still communities. With people who know each other and have Quiz Nights at the local Pub. AND have cartie races: http://catterline.org/carties/video2006

(If my webmaster tells me how to insert here! I'll forego the in-text addresses.) Now, doesn't that look like fun? Here's another fun local event. The best thing is that the whole town is made of sandstone so there is no catching the town on fire accidentally while swinging fireballs around all night. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6HfAj-iwkE  and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6i-goPxi_rk

Amazing. Something to do with the kids on New Years Eve!

 

skies and thistles

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The skies are always interesting here. Stormy and sunny at the same time. One can see 4 different storms building in different directions and brilliant blue sunny skies in between them!

sun and storm

Here's something R probably doesn't want in his garden:

thistle generator

A Thistle Generator. It sits behind the science building by the botanical gardens. Which are beautiful and I have yet to see any thistles in them.

the Abbey

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The systematics researchers all presented papers while on a 2 day retreat. At the Abbey. It went really well.

Here is the view:

fieldThere were about 7 cock pheasants in the field – with their harems.

 

 as you can see here:

 pheasanttractor road

 

That's the Abbey and Church up there behind the trees.

 

view from front porchAnd here is the view from the front porch:

 

 

 

stone fenceHere's an idea for a stone fence, Reuben. Use broken pieces from the chapel and old buildings! See the arches and stone window frames?

 

 

On our way home we kept seeing rainbows. Even double ones and very brilliant. Of course, taking the pictures from the car window is a trick.

rainbowrainbow2

The driver said he has never seen more rainbows than he has since he's been living here. I guess that is a good omen.

spring and fall

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Spring here is interesting. Sort of in the sixties with a cold breeze. Warmer in the direct sunlight, whenever that joyfully happens. It's a lot like Fall in the midwest. My clothing concession to spring here is wearing my summer skirts and t-shirts with longjohns to keep me warm. And the nike jacket.

A couple weeks ago I took a walk in the Park. It was drizzling but that's not a good enough reason there to not walk in the park. Many people were out with their dogs and their kids.

I would post some pictures but for some reason the program can't find them right now. Oh well.

The Winter Garden – i.e., greenhouse supported specific climates — was great too. There was an AZ garden of cacti planted – but the cacti were a lot closer together than I've ever seen them in their natural environs. A japanese garden with an interesting stone slab bridge that I think R should make for willow point. It would not rot out as fast as the tricky tree bridges. A wedding chapel and tropical forest. And a nice little stream with concrete frogs and a Nessie monster. Cute.