Thursday, 3 September 2015

Parrot rescue

Met this guy in Dumfries. He is from parrot rescue. This Amazon orange tip is 11 and will live till he is 85 all things being equal. Apparently he used to be a biter but being hand fed porridge and being given lots to do turned him into a lovely bird.

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Crocheted sponge cake

Cycling langholm to kirtlebridge today - 15 miles. Finished crocheting the sponge cake from Mallaig knitters group today. They definitely get the prize for best spread!

Friday, 28 August 2015

What clothes do you take for a 70 day cycle ride?

A lot of people have asked me this. One change underwear n socks, two tee shirts,  merino long johns, merino undershirt, one fleece, one pair trousers, one pair waterproof trousers, waterproof jacket, windshell. Wearing cycle shorts n top plus the other set of underwear n socks

Wednesday, 26 August 2015


Cycled 15 miles or so in a strong headwind, mostly in a low gear even on the flat. Lovely people and the cafe in Kelso told me to stay as long as I liked. Did I really look that knackered?! Bought a new cycle shirt as mine had snags on the front and the grubby marks will no longer wash out. Bicycles in all the shop Windows In anticipation of the Tour Dr Britain, passing through on 8th September. Also Honda goldwings everywhere - they have a gathering this weekend. 

Picture is of a gallery made to look like a boat and the dolphin is made of scrap metal cogs etc

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Border Mill picture

And here is the picture to go with the words below.

Duns - and I am home in 11 days!

Home in 11 days time and having a ball. Blogger is only letting me share one picture per blog post via the new phone but that's a whole lot better than none! Visit to The Border Mill in Duns today. They process alpaca on a small scale for producers. Bought some fibre and they also sell yarn.

Friday, 21 August 2015

Giant puffballs

Always wanted to see giant puffballs and there they were at the side of the road  Not a place you would walk and cars would never see them. Oh the Aviv of a bicycle. And of course they are now on the 'must crochet or knit' list

Wednesday, 19 August 2015


Thrilling to be on the east coast because not only have I cycled up Scotland as far as Dingwall but I have now also gone from one coast at Ayr in the West to Prestonpans on the other side. Dipped a finger in the water justctobprove it!

More talks and workshops

The time is whizzing by now I am nearer home and have less than three weeks to go. This workshop a couple is days ago was at Victoria Bennett's house in Edinburgh. She is also a jazz singer and has a show at the Fringe this year.  Last night I gave a talk with slide show at penicuik arts centre. Today I cycled 26 miles and am now at Longniddry staying with Angela and Bill. Haddington spinners are camping in the horse field and tomorrow I am doing a wee workshop with them on longdraw spinning. Wonderful fun tonight sitting in the field!

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Lanarkshire - A trip down memory lane

Cycled from Paisley to Glasgow then hopped on a train to Lanark.  We passed through Uddingston where I spent ost of my childhood. Lanarkshire still feels like home and the people just seem to speak my language.  At New Lanark my wee workshop shared the space with the Quaker Tapestry. As a Quaker that was nice. This panel spoke to me - Knit 1 Bike 1 is my adventure!

Monday, 10 August 2015

Paisley to new lanark

Cycled back from Paisley to Glasgow. Virtually the whole way is off road on good tracks. Peaceful, quiet and lovely. Glasgow has great cycle ways. Hopped on a train to Lanarkshire and it iscwindy tonight again.  A blast from the past as y first 'proper(,jobceas on Lanarkshire. This was my local and still going strong

Sunday, 9 August 2015

Saturday, 8 August 2015

Samba in Stirling

Great fun with the women's samba band in Stirling this morning then a train to Glasgow and a 9.5 mile cycle to Paisley. Staying with daughter Roxanne , her partner Stevie and wee Conor. Lovely to have a hot bath and time with family. Hubby Lee came up for a rendezvous and we got caught up on the laptop and backed up all the photos again. Never a dull moment!

Pipers in the park

Well of course this is Scotland so what do you do on a sunny day but pick up your bagpipes and head to the park for a spot of practise?

Kinross to Stirling

26 miles today. The Cycle Touring Club journey Planner said it used 590 calories. - How many cakes is that again?! It sure felt like a long way to me though especially after having to De-camp at 6pm and move to a b&b last night due to a rather strange guy on the campsite!

Frequent pit stops and I arrived at Stirling to the sound of the pipes. Either they knew I was coming or there is a piping competition in the town...

I was the 307th cyclist of the day through this counter!

Thursday, 6 August 2015

Kinross skeins n bobbins

Tired yesterday and just wanted to stay in the Abbey Inn at Newburgh for a second night. It would have made today very rushed though. So camped last night and De-camped to a b&b tonight due to a rather surreal experience at the campsite.  A guy wandered in supposedly to clean the floor in the loos and proceeded to stand and chat to me whilst I brushed my teeth!
Lovely time at Skeins and Bobbins this afternoon and Morag and her sister Rhona gave me an exquisite skein of alpaca silk laceweight and two handknitted bunny egg cosies. Off to Stirling to stay with Mary tomorrow.

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Dundee to Newburgh

A stiff uphill cycle of only 17 miles but the hills and a strong headwind meant slow progress. Glad to finally make it here p

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Drumochter pass here i come

The tent was full of drifting down this morning. Not a snowstorm but enough that it was in my eyes and mouth and the black merino underwear lookec rather messy. Sigh. The sleeping bag will have to go back to the next Blacks i pass which is not till Dundee. Had to shake everything and sweep it out of the tent. There are no actual holes but it is coming through the fabric. Not actual feathers with a wee point to work its way through but soft, floaty down so guess is,sub-standard fabric...At dalwhinnie done 10 miles n got another 24 to go. Cant wait to see Hubby tomorrow. Good truckers breakfast before i set off, cos great place opposite the campsite

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Newtonmore and the Highland Folk Museum

Oh crumbs - got a wee phone call from the Kay Adams,show on radio Scotland yesterday afternoon, just when i had committed to a second night in Aviemore. I wanted to go to the Knit n Natter in Aviemore library. A lovely evening and it was fun seeing folks' knitting. I am told they raised £800 with their knitted poppies last year but I have been warned that they cannot cope with any more orders this year! I loved the knitted hedgehog too.

So i was all packed up by 7.40 this morning for a brisk 17 miles or so from Rothiemurcus to Aviemore and arrived at Newtonmore by 9.30, feeling very smug. Lots of wildlife at the side of the road that early in the day, including a weasel. Spotted some lovely chanterelles too and will add them to the crochet list. The campsite was only £5 cos i am by myself and cycling round Scotland and the owner also gave me 40p for a hot shower! So there i was sitting on a bench outside the campsite laundry being interviewed by Radio Scotland. Surreal! The tent is drying out in the breeze after four nights of rain, although it has not been too bad during the day.

Finished crocheting a seal.
And thanks to the Skiing Doo for a wonderful meal last night

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

A seal, some energy n creativity

Been to aviemore knit n natter. A surge in creative energy since getting a new, cosy down sleeping bag nd dry bags for clothes. This is july and temperatures of -1 have been recorded. Cosy night last night at last and without wearing several layers of clothes. Far fewer midges now i am a bit further east so i can put up with the rain now i aM not cold or eaten alive! So out of survival mode and into creative mode again. Fourth consecutive night in the tent since the b & b in plockton and doind good! Poppies and hedgehog made by aviemore knit n natter members

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Dingwall to invernness - getting used to this

Had breakfast with the audax riders who had finished their 400k/250mile ride. Some had trifle or dumpling, some soup, some bacon rolls. Quite a few were snoozing between bites! A lovely knit and chat with Denise despite her havinng been up all night organising the event. Cycled from dingwall to inverness. 15 lovely miles on a cycle way so no need to touch the busy main road. Joy of joys a food van comes to the site so ddinnnner tonight cost only £5.40. crocheting a seal but it looks more like the snake in the Harry Potter books...

Saturday, 25 July 2015

No more midges for me!

Hopped on a train at plockton yesterday. Jumped off at Garve then cycled 15 miles to Dingwall. Im here to meet up with cyclists doing the national Audax - 400km/250 miles non stop and they will finish sometime between 4am and 1pm tomorrow. Denise and Steve have been doing the catering and invited me along for breakfast on the Sunday morning ie tomorrow. Went to see them off then discovered the Greenhouse communuty cafe and watched the torrential rain from inside whilst backing up photos on one of their laptops. They are having a sea and bea h awareness weekend with music and storytelling. Had a go on a tandem trike before it set off to do the Audax, thankfully with Judith on board behind Aiden not me! Cycling to inverness tomorrow. Finally joy of joys i can sit in the tent doorway, eat lunch and watch the rain without getting eaten alive by midges! Last two pics show the bike folded and tucked inside the tent and the tent zipped up snug against the rain

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

An interesting night..

Rather windy in the tent last night and opted to change the route n go to kyle of lochalsh with the wind behind me. Skipping Harris and Lewis and heading up to Dingwall from here. The tent held its ground perfectly in the wind though i did get up and check a couple of times. Am getting to like this tent! Took a video in the night of the tent being buffeted which is in my facebook page. Great workshop atvThe Handspinner Having Fun yesterday too and was made very welcome by Bev and the team. Now at Plockton after a pleasant 15 miles or so and will spend the night in a b n b.

Sunday, 19 July 2015

Broadford skye and better news re te t

Headed over to the island of Skye last night and spent the first night at the forest garden campsite Armadale. Lovely atmosphere in the evening there but really more like wild camping. The first good nights sleep in the tent despite heavy rain. It is now waterproof, gas storm guys which help it pitch better and i finally sussed the condensation problem. Instead of securing the centre pegs of the ends of the flysheet first like you normally would, they are left till last. This helps the tent sit better and means there is,an air gap at either end between the flysheet and the ground. This matches up with the internal vents and it all seems to work well, fingers crossed. Pity neither instructions or youtube videos mentioned that! Arrived at broadford to find a notice saying 'Knit 1 Bike 1 is here 20th july! Bev at the Handspinner Having Fun has pId for my campsite which was lovely and am looking forward to meeting her and doing the workshop there tomorrow at 2pm. Also had a fab time at Heartfelt By Liz in Dalmally over the previous two days and was made to feel so at home. Lovely to see Liz again and get to know Graham. The crocheted flowers workshop was fab and a chance to catch up with friends Sandy and Jeanette who came over specially. Before that was a workshop in Mallaig and more wonderful hospitality from Morag in Mallaig. Great to see the,Ginger knitwear studio and Anna who runs it gave me some great yarn for the project. The Mallaug group gave me,a generous donation for Knit 1 Bike 1 too - thanks folks. Often hard to get o. The internet so will be gaps between entries at least till i am finished with the Islands

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

A wee adventure

Missed the ferry to fort william from the strontian road today and there was not another for hours. Was just deciding what to do when a bus came along and the driver was heading ba k to the main fort william road which meant i could cycle up the other way to fort william without having to retrace my steps. It was only once i was in board i realised it was not a service bus at all but one converted into a music studio for who work with young people in isolated areas and aim to reduce the very high suicide rate. The project leader and developer ran me all the way to fort william! This meant there was time to buy a new rucksac before mine completely fell apart! Staying at glen nevia campsite. Busy but nicely so with great facilities including a breakfast snack van and a tearoom bar and restaurant on the road nearby. Had a heritage tomato salad and chips! Great time at morags - no wonder highland hospitality is famous and fab granny square workshop in mallaig last night after fiah n chips from the famius hole in the wall