Saturday, 13 January 2018

feathered friends

More dull grey weather putting the turd in Saturday. The coach said we should run round Inverleith Park. I agreed but was not excited about it. Work has been wall-to-wall of late and I have been doing precious little running. Of notable exception was Wed eve when Mr Stavert (due to a pf foot preferring less tarmac) suggested a session of headtorch off-roadiness round the Seat. It is nearer to home than the dreaded prom and more scenic by far, even in the dark. The laps of the hills in the company of Andrew, George and Steve flew past and I will prob do the same this week. All welcome. Why hadn't I thought of this before? 

William Wagtail in Iona St.
(Not quite a Nightingale in Berkeley Sq but still quite incongruous.)

Inverleith Pk had lots of ducks and gulls on the pond including Tufted Ducks which I hadn't noticed before. Were they always there? The light was crap and I had only taken the B camera as I feared rain so the pics are not very special. I was still feeling pretty uninspired until Mary suggested a cut through the Sundial Garden. There were a few points of interest including a hawk overhead, and a sundial with inscription. I had heard recently - can't remember where - it is traditional for sundials to carry a pessimistic motto along the lines of we're all going to die, and soon! There were also some plants almost worth a photo or 2.

Although I have posted some photos of graffiti of late I am really not a fan. In fact it brings out the right winger in me and we had a chat about what cruel and unusual punishments might be used to dissuade such spray paint vandals. I think we came to the conclusion that the perpetrator hung beside their work and left for a few days might do the trick. Whatever is in place currently is certainly not the solution.

too late for an apology

 a heron makes a run for it while I take a photo without zooming out sufficiently

Now they say crows are smart. This one was clearly outsmarting a rather dim little dog. And enjoying itself too. The dog chased (I'm guessing here) Mr. and Mrs. Crow off the patch of grass. Mrs. Crow flew away but Mr Crow landed nearby encouraging the dog to chase it further. It would take off and fly just a couple of yards easily outpacing the overbred lapdog but staying close enough to keep the dog running back and forth. I don't think the dog was bright enough to realise it was being had.

Friday, 12 January 2018

more urbaneering

Last Sunday and we probably should have been hill training in the Pentlands but for various reasons went a hilly run round town and some of the 7 Hills course. It was really bright and a bit cold: ideal running weather. The sun being out means you can take photos of rusty old steps at the council tip and they come out in glorious colours with an arty shadow. Or a shot of Mary with her hoodie up showing off her tiny pin head!

We went up the water of Leith and through the Dean Village. The discouragements (due to land that hasn't slipped since one smallish slide AGES ago) are the same on the downstream side but have changed dramatically on the upstream side with these (below) larger, but nonetheless easy-to-climb fences. Mary took the muddier round-the-side option while I went over the top. They were probably sufficient to discourage a couple of women dog walkers one of whom remarked Stuart said it was easy to climb. Well yes and no. It depends: if the only thing you regularly climb is into your car or bed, then you may find it tricky. It reminded me of a conversation with the guys in the paint shop about whether you can put your socks on standing up. (Of course.) I think it (the socks thing) marks a watershed moment. Probably the curve at the top of the slippery slope.

What sort of a way is this to treat National Treasure Ant'ny Gormley


After passing near to the Belford galleries we took (on Mary's suggestion) the old 7 Hills route out to Corstorphine Hill. I was looking forward to the sun casting shadows of branches on the leaf litter and the trees in their glory. That box ticked we descended to Kaimes Rd by yet another and mysterious route down from Clermiston Tower. 

nice meandering path: shame I'll never find it again

Last time we crossed the tram tracks I took a photo of M standing unconcerned on the tracks to underline the inefficiency of the much hated trams. (Ok it's only me that hates them.) I was busy thinking up schemes to play on this - the next stage being a photo of Mary lying on the tracks, the next, lying tied up like a vintage film damsel in distress. Visions of Mary with climbing rope swathed round her lying down on tracks as tram appears, charging over horizon. Maybe next time, although Mary wasn't as keen as myself.

Mary began to feel in need of a pick-me-up
so had a can of juice and a gerry bakewell

we then past Angus (and pal) on the WoL
but he was too fast for a photo


up Craiglockhart

Mary was fading fast by the time we crossed Craiglockhart and came out wishing to be home soonish. We headed into Morningside then Marchmont, over to the castle down a street I haven't been down in a long while if ever: leading from the Art College to the Grassmarket. I took quite a few photos of the topmost points of buildings and their decorations. See if you can recognise them...


good alleyway into Grassmarket

OK name this building: where is the guy throwing quoits?
(Do people still throw quoits?)(I doubt it, unless it's an app.)

I quite like the Bruegelly colours going on here.

14.85miles at leisurely pace,
nice route