Sunday, June 30, 2013

A Day out along the East Neuk Crail

This was my  trip to Crail last week,….alas the sun was not shinning and it was a little  muggy but at least there was nor a rain drop in sight..
This is about 1 1/2 hours from me by bus …thank goodness for my free old age bus pass.
This is what met me as I alighted .

CRAIL…or as it was once known, Karel ….was thought to be in existence at the time of the Picts …(early Celtic Medieval times)…it was a Trading and Fishing port in the 12th Century …and held the largest Market in Europe at the Market square.

  Burghs were created in Scotland from the 12th century. They had the right to hold markets, levy customs and tolls  and this was the original use for the Tollbooth shown above (the building with the tower).
Robert the Bruce, when King, gave it Royal Burgh status in the early quarter of the Thirteen hundreds and this entitled it to have an elected council led by a Provost  and Baillies (civic officers) who also acted as magistrates over local crimes. The Tollbooth housed accused criminals awaiting trial, and debtors. It also was where public punishment took place, having stocks and whipping posts outside and occasionally  it was the place of execution resulting in the  displaying the severed  head.

I stopped at two eateries ….firstly, morning coffee at Julia's Café on the High Street

....all walls were  festooned in art work … and the tempting home baking made it hard to choose …I went for Lemon and Poppy seed scones ….and was not disappointed.
 I chose a quiet time …but by the time I left it was full.

Lunch was at Crail Harbour Café …on the way down to the Harbour.

  ….although the actual wood smoked salmon  was wonderful the salad was boring and I hate crisps with a meal…the view from my table and the friendly staff made up for it though.

 Crail Harbour is surrounded by 17th Century houses and cobbled streets making it a popular spot for artists to sit and create.. …shame it was low tide.

 I had a lovely chat to this lady who was part of a group of artists who meet regularly at the harbour ...she had been up at 5am to capture the sun rise in a Water colour ...the colours she had used were beautiful.

Lobsters and crab are still landed at Crail …. and I love seeing the baskets piled up on the cobbles.
 This final shot is a little bit of a mystery …apparently there is no remaining evidence of the original castle and I cant find anything about a fort  so what is this turret and wall, high up on the cliff ….maybe I need a visit to the Crail Museum and ask.
There’s a lot more to see ... and history to research ... so I think I need to go back …and sample more scones of course.

Hope you enjoyed my day out 
Take Care xx

Friday, June 28, 2013

Goodbye China Doll

 CHINA ....2000 -2013
You Will Be Missed So Much

Sadly we lost China this morning ...she had not been well for a little while but after the last visit to the vet, last weekend, she had gone down hill rapidly. We new it was now time to let her go to Rainbow Bridge ...and thankfully, she went so  peacefully.

She was a beautiful cat whose personallity was all you could wish for ...she comforted us humans through down times...especially Jay and little Kris.... and chatted when she thought we just might understand.
It was particularly hard for Kris as he chose her as a friend when he first came to live with us and was confused about his life.
 Even though we have so many cats, each one is so very special to us ....we all have our favourite few and when one of those goes, it is even harder for that person.

Take Care xx

Friday, June 21, 2013

Friday smiles ...Smudge finds a cosy spot ...and a forgotten ATC.

Nearly missed it again ....knew the date was the 21st as my gorgeous twin grandsons, Ben and Jake, turned five today and I sang 'Happy Birthday' over the phone to them ...but the fact that it was Friday slipped by unnoticed ...almost ....except that it struck me that tomorrow was going to be Saturday !!!

The photo I wanted to use is in fact on my DD camera so will use it another day but Smudge created a photo opportunity for me instead.
I have a bag hanging on the understairs cupboard which is in a strange place ...just by the back door ...and it contains old tea towels and cloths ...ready for what ever  use ....and away from cat hair so I thought.
As I went to grab one, this is what I found ....

 Dont you just love the expression of annoyance to have his comfy space discovered ...and to be woken to boot.

Talking of birthdays ....GS Kris was 6 on the 16th ....why is it they want to pull a face when you point a camera ....he just wanted to giggle and was trying to stop. He had a fantastic day out with 12 friends at  bowling and crazy golfing....Jay and Vicki must be mad but they had it so organized that it all went to plan.
  Now lets get back to that bag ....that all 20 cats have totally ignored ...'til today ....I saw Barnaby trying to annoy Smudge when he was in it ....10mins later ....... this is what I found

Lastly I have to say this brought a huge smile to my face as I opened it ....a gift from Slovenia ...I am not sure whether it was a surpise ATC ....or I had just totally forgotten....I think the latter...
Thank you so very much Dolores aka Cardarian is so beautiful.

These are things that made me smile this week ...I hope they bring a smile to you too
Take Care. xx

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

OMG its WOYWW 210 ....must say thank you.

There I was just sitting playing one of those Farm games that I have avoided for years .... when it struck me ....its Wednesday.
I did manage to create a few ATC's and these are the three I received in exchange and PIF.

Margaret sent me the gorgeous 'Colours of Snowdonia' to which is BJ's pretty ballerina and below In one of Annie's(Stich in Time) little works of art....they are all so amazing and I send hugs and so much thanks ladies.

I am making this short so I can link quickly
Take Care xx

Monday, June 10, 2013

Anstruther ....sun, sea and history

  The  sun was stronger than I expected … the air was so still …there was a calmness I had never before experienced when sitting watching the harbour  and its boats at Anstruther …
….and then I realized what the difference was …no seagulls.

                                             (Click on the collage strips for a better look)
 Whether it was too early for them or that they had already got used to visitors obeying the notices not to feed them …I really do not know but there was not one in the sky or on the paths around the waters edge.
The stillness was unbelievable …the few marshmallowy clouds  that sat suspended against the bright blue background, appeared to be static. I intently stared at them, with markers in my vision, not believing that they were actually still…but they were.

 I had come out on this glorious day to enjoy Anstruthers renowned Fish and Chips but it was far too hot …I had stopped for a coffee and scone at the Boat house (last in the row of the photos).... and wondered what to do about lunch  as I watched some men at work….but I felt it would definitely include ice cream …preferably lots.
 I wandered up and down the harbour and noticed a sculpture I had not seen before….but I cant find any information about it …I assume it represents the nets that were used by the Drifters that caught the herrings.

 Here is a herring boat that belongs to the Fife Fisheries Museum …and a little about it.

 ‘The Reaper’ was a herring Drifter built in 1902.… the name coming from the nets that were used. The boom in herring fishing was around 1907, when they had become a delicacy in Europe. They could be caught off the east coast of Scotland during winter and spring months …. and the west and northern waters during the summer. The size of the boats were important as over a certain size there was a tax levied  on the owner. The boats eventually followed the shoals  even down to Yarmouth in England …and the Herring lasses followed the boats to the ports at which they would dock. The herring is a fatty fish and need to be gutted and cured faster than  white fish. These girls came from fishing villages all over Scotland …starting to learn the trade around the age of 15.
While the fishing on the whole was suspended in most waters during WWI, the seamen’s knowledge of the waters was used by the government, against enemy shipping.

Lastly a memorial …  previously missed by me… commemorate those who lost their lives in ‘The Battle of May Island’. This I had to read up on when I got home ….yet another  wartime secret.

 Most of the facts of this tragedy were only released in the 1990’s as it was a series of catastrophic accidents which had no enemy involvement….not even the relatives of those who perished knew anything …. they were told that their loved ones had been lost in active service.
Most of those who perished were the crews of K-class submarines …these were steam powered vessels with funnels to enable them to move at the speed of  surface ships but the funnel then had to be dismantled and stored, when they needed to submerge .

The account of the disaster is as  follows ….
On the evening of 31st January 1918, nine Submarines, accompanied by Battleships, Cruisers and Destroyers, left their winter base at Rosyth to rendezvous with Admiral Beatty’s fleet . Blackout regulations were in force as was radio silence.
Near the Isle of May, just across the water  from Anstruther, mine sweeping trawlers were patrolling , unaware of the movements of the submarines and their convoy….the scene was now set for the ensuing disaster.
The mine sweepers crossed in front of the fleet and the confusion began. ….K22 collided with K14 causing serious damage  ….then K22 was struck by a battle cruiser ….another cruiser hit K17 which then sank but her crew escaped into the water ….K3 and K4 stopped ... but K6 ploughed into K4  ….K4 was also struck by K7 which resulted in K4 sinking with no survivors. The last cruel blow was that some of the surface ships ploughed through those who had survived the K17 sinking, as they could not be seen.

 On that night over 100 died a few miles off Anstruther but at the time few, if any, who lived along that stretch of coast knew of what happened ...and it was kept a secret for a very long time. The final toll was higher…. closer to 200 …due to deaths from injuries.
The memorial was erected 84 years after the event  ….honouring those who perished in what was eventually known as ‘The Battle of May Island’.

On a lighter note ….the gulls appeared as if from no where ….early in the  afternoon.

Hope you enjoyed my day out in the sun ....rare up here I have to say ... and the little bit of history thrown in .... hope you found it interesting .
Take Care. xx

Friday, June 07, 2013

Friday Smiles ….Cats have their boxes but Holly has her loo roll !!!.

 …well the cardboard inner bit …

 She has so much fun with it….and it makes me smile….maybe I’ll try for a video one week.

An interesting fact for you about Pygmy hedgehogs …not only do they like cats but they have the same time clock as cats. At first we thought Holly was nocturnal but after Vicki reading even more about them, we discovered they are not actually nocturnal. Like cats, they tend to be  alert at dawn and  sleep heavily from late morning ‘til late afternoon and even on until dusk, in the summer. They will sleep again until the early hours and then have a mad hour or so …those of you who have several cats  will be used to the thunder of paws and the insect hunting that goes on around 1am.
 Ever since we discovered this and organized play time around the time slots, she is much happier. She still gets up for a run on her wheel at about 1am so we have to remember to pop  it back into her sleeping quarters and as she now sleeps downstairs she no longer disturbs any ones sleep with the continuous rattling of the apparatus….unless I have fallen a sleep on the sofa.!!!


 The sun also makes me smile and we have had a week of it …I rather feel that this is our summer has actually been over 60F …they say around 65F …. but I think it has actually been higher and may have reached 70F or more at midday or when the air is still.
This is a shot from my day out on Tuesday... look at that glorious blue sky …watch this space for some more photos over the weekend …and a little history maybe.

Hope Holly …. or the view ….made you smile today.

Now you just need to drop by  'A Stich In Time' for more smiles

Take Care xx