Welcome to the running wave, which I set up as a vehicle for my photographs, with some observational chat and occasionally a little writing. I hope you enjoy the things I enjoy, sharing my walks with Tilly and Ted, and other excursions I have from time to time.
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Here is a random selection of photos from our few days on Colonsay. My postcards from the edge.
One of Colonsay's raised beaches
This is the first time we have been on Colonsay when the heather has been in bloom. On the hillsides the soft purple of the calluna, or ling, heather, the brighter bell heather, mosses, sedges, bracken and low growing grasses all mingle to produce that lovely overall colour which becomes reflected in Scottish tweeds and knitwear.
Common Darter dragonfly
The berries on the hawthorn and rowan trees are plentiful. I noticed this at home too. Mr Gaucho read on his iPad that the forecasters are predicting a return of the 'beast from the east', early in 2020. I did wonder about the quantities of berries and maybe Mother Nature is laying in provisions.
In various places I saw some lovely heads of hydrangea, both in the outer gardens of Colonsay House and in the gardens of the hotel. I love their colours as the flowers begin to age.
I saw a different range of wild flowers during this September visit to Colonsay. Purple loosestrife and the remnants of meadow sweet, meadow vetchling and devil's-bit scabious. Here is purple loosestrife which enjoys having its feet planted in deep damp soil.
Another apiary of ten hives in total, which I hadn't spotted before.
You can't visit a community, repeatedly, without a wander around the cemetery. Colonsay's cemetery looks west, out across the Atlantic, which is fitting for a considerable number of its occupants who were seaman and fishermen.
Of all the headstones I have ever seen, the one pictured in the photograph below is the one for me! It's tiny and I think it is quite beautiful with its lichens and cushion of soft green moss.
Before we took the ferry home, we popped into The Pantry, the island's only cafe. Outside, chilling out on the grass, were about a dozen cows, some dozing peacefully in the sunshine.
A last glance up the road at the hotel and the church, perched on the left hand side.
By the time the ferry pulled away from the quayside, the clouds had come over the island again. I suppose grey skies makes it a little easier to leave, but not much.
By the time I have walked about four miles, my toes are screaming at me - it's the arthritis, you see. One of the joys of being that little bit older than I was. However, for a long time, I have been keen to walk along the beaches, and follow the coastal path, between Gullane and North Berwick. So, having worked out the tide times, I decided today was the day, and off we went. Below is our starting point, the bay at Gullane. It's a lovely beach, very popular with dog walkers. This is looking east, the direction Tilly and I were going to take. Looking back, up the Forth, the unmistakable bulk of Arthur's Seat, and Edinburgh's skyline, just clear enough to see. For most of the walk, there is the choice between wandering along a series of beaches, or following a path along the top of each. There's no denying it, at heart I am a shell-seeker. I have loads of shells at home. We lived on one of the out islands in the Bahamas for a just over a year, a long time ago, and …
Cathy at https://ramblinginthegarden.wordpress.com, whose brainchild IAVOM (In A Vase On Monday) it is, has set us a challenge this week, to produce a miniature vase, no bigger than 6"/15cm tall or wide, to celebrate the 6th anniversary of the weekly Monday post.
I have used an eggcup, with egg, to give some scale to my offering this week. The nasturtiums have survived a couple of frosts and some cold nights, but possibly not for much longer. I picked the smallest flowers I could find to fit in a tiny porcelain vase, which is almost completely spherical with a circular off-centre opening. It was made by a friend from long ago, Ingrid Atkinson, who I have not seen for about thirty years. She used to live and work as a ceramicist in West Meon, in Hampshire.
The flowers may be small, but they still pack a colourful punch!
We also have another tiny porcelain vase made by the late Austrian-born British ceramics artist Lucie Rie. Today's challenge seemed too good an opportun…
This is a good time of year for walking in the countryside. Before the harvested fields are ploughed, I enjoy walking along the hedgerows and field margins, safe in the knowledge we are not doing any damage to anything. My vase this week has flowers from the field edges. Chamomile, hogweed, dead nettle and yarrow. They are fresh and pure white, a complete change from anything I have to offer from the garden, and without a vestige of autumn colour. I particularly love the long slender seed pods on stems of a stray oilseed rape plant, self-seeded in a vast field of Brussel sprouts.