Thursday, 1 February 2018

sunny days down the brrr beach

What these photos from Saturday and Monday don't show is the temperature. It looks sunny and bright which it was, but there was a Baltic wind blowing and it was hard getting out the car at Gullane. Most of the folk we passed (dog-walkers and bird-spotters) were dressed for the Arctic, and rightly so. A few were looking at me in shorts and probably thinking how poorly prepared I was. My legs rarely feel the cold - I think the hair creates a woolly jumper effect and the muscles stay warm from exertion. Ears and fingers however HAVE to be well covered. I took the good camera on both occasions.

backlit rushes

the wigeon were out in force again

the butterfly bush at toad corner has been submerged recently

There were a couple of gulls on the beach looking a bit puzzled, like they might be thinking "you've got to be f-ing kidding me" it was so cold. One was sat on the sand like gulls don't do.

It was NOT paddling weather. However Mary has been having some unexplained health issues and sore knees / IT band problems. It might have been running hard in the snowy Pentlands or it might just be old age. Also a swollen wrist: also alarmingly unrelated to any injury or action. I happened upon an old blog recently that suggested she was going through similar last September, also relatively unexplained.

A potential cure/benefit was to remove shoes and tights and expose the knees to the cold water. I found it hard to remain on the beach cowering behind a rock taking photos, and certainly wasn't going paddling. Mary described the water as being vice like - a massive clamp being tightened painfully on her feet, and came out twice to recover before going in for a third shuffle around. It was unplanned so we didn't have a towel to dry frozen legs and feet before popping them into socks and shoes. Actually no popping was done. Both of us worked hard to force her wet sandy zombie feet back into socks and shoes which she wore round Tesco's on the way home. Yup sounds awful but must have worked wonders as she opted to do the same on Monday.

now you've wet your pants

Due to the similarity of both Sat and Mon (which we both had off) I am going to post Monday right here...

Same sunshine though the wind had picked up and it was even colder.

same backlit rushes
It's like I've already deja vu-ed this?

male with beak open mansplaining

I was disappointed by the photo on Saturday taken here of geese flying over. It was shit. So I expected much the same for these ducks although I didn't zoom in so much - they obliged by flying very close, battling against the wind. And maybe it was the proximity, but they look like they have been cut out and stuck on the blue sky background. Much improved! Nearly got 3 flying in a row like the kitsch china ones but 1 and 3 were clipped. Here is number 2.

When the tide is fairly well in there is a spit of sand (at the west end of Aberlady beach) the "duckies" like to gather at the end of. I went most of the way along to get a shot of the waders there. I kept a decent distance away enjoying the dazzle of the sun on the water and the busy-ness / business of the different sized birds. (Did you see the Sanderlings getting their 15mins of fame on Winterwatch?)


After the run we took a towel down to the beach where Mary did her cold-water-cure again. She was making far fewer faces this time but I don't think it was because the water was balmy warm. I sure as hell didn't bother finding out, but took photos of the kite surfers while Mary did the in - out - in - out -  in - out thing again. One of these experiences that is nice to have done once it's over. The nearest I am getting to the water is looking online at Alpkit extra-furry wetsuits with a view to resuming swimming in future months (once the water does warm up). No particular hurry!

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