Wednesday, October 31, 2007


Took this photo when I was out birding in Saltcoats area at Auchenharvie Pond. Haven't yet been able to find out what it was.

If anyone knows, please post.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Calm Doon

........... or in this case, anything but.

I took this picture outside the Brig O'Doon House Hotel just after a night of heavy rain. This stretch of the river is just visible in some of the earlier photos of the River Doon taken upstream from the railway bridge.

The river is not as calm and gentle as it was then!

Monday, October 29, 2007


Whilst walking round the Rozelle Pond, I saw a Grey Heron on the other bank.

It was obliging enough to let me change the lens on the camera and then stretch out a bit to give me other views.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Autumn Leaves (not)

From a distance it looks like piles of autumn leaves round a tree stump, but no.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

No photo

Sorry, but there isn't a photograph today.

It has been devoted to sharing in a thanksgiving and remembrance service for a good friend who died very recently. The service was uplifting in so many ways.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Autumn Leaves

Just before the strong winds and heavy rain sets in, we went for a walk passing through Rozelle Estate. The dead leaf colours are brilliant.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Red sky at night......

I happened to look up from the computer yesterday evening and realised there was a glorious colour in the sky outside. I dashed outside with the camera and this is one of the results.

In this case, the rhyme was true since we had a gorgeous morning today.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


I visited the East Coast yesterday as promised (it took longer because of traffic problems), but we got a goodly collection of bird sightings in cold clear sunny weather. This picture is from Aberlady Bay where we went, towards sunset, to see the over-wintering geese arriving back from their grazing areas to roost. They mainly consist of Pink-footed geese, but we did spot three Barnacle Geese amongst them. Earlier we had also seen four Brent Geese as well as a couple of Little Gulls.

The one thing that you can't get from photographs is the sheer volume of noise as the geese flock in, skein after skein. As it got progressively darker so more and more arrived and the volume kept going up.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Giant Bonzai

No, I know it's not, but it's the first thought that came into my mind when I saw it.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Newark Castle

Today's photo is of Newark Castle, which is still a private residence; thus the distance shot rather than a close-up.


Sunday, October 21, 2007


Let me immediately confess that I have absolutely no idea what sort of fungus this is - that's one of the many areas of ignorance I have. So if anyone can identify please do.

There were three or four of them at the edge of a park area beside the road, looking for all the world like small white pegs.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Doon River

A little pun as well as a photograph today. This is taken from the opposite side of the bridge from yesterday's photograph, so we're looking down (colloquially doon)Doon River.

Friday, October 19, 2007


Today's photograph is of the Alloway Old (15th Century) Bridge in the background and New Bridge (1816)in the foreground.

The Old Bridge is immortalised in the poem Tam O'Shanter by Robert Burns; this saved it from demolition at the time the New Bridge was built.

The photograph was taken from the bridge built to carry the Ayr / Turnberry / Girvan Light Railway

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Old Fashioned

A different style of photograph today. I get the chains for my chainsaw here; an old fashioned business in the best sense of the word. Tom Holliday supplies and services chainsaws, grass mowers, strimmers - you can see just a few of them in the photograph - etc..

It looks chaotic, but it is not and you can't beat the friendly and knowledgeable service. It's always at a very reasonable price as well.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

River Clyde

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In order to go on the Waverley sail, we had crossed over the Clyde from Gourock to Dunoon on the Cal-Mac car ferry. The following three photographs were taken from the ferry Jupiter as we sailed back from Dunoon to Gourock in the gathering dusk.

This is a picture of the opposition Western Ferries boat with the Holy Loch in the background.

Looking over the stern of the Jupiter to see the sun setting over Argyll.

A picture in the fading evening light of the tranquil entrance to Loch Long.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Scenery in Loch Long and Loch Goil

I said in yesterday's posting that I'd publish some photos from the sail on the Waverley up Loch Long and Loch Goil.

The weather was very overcast for most of the sail, but there was no rain and the lighting effects were superb. I think Scotland is at it's most dramatically beautiful when the clouds are low over the hills.

The first photo is over over the stern of the Waverley as we drew away from Blairmore.
Then on to a view of the slopes above Loch Long.

The lighting in this shot looking back down the upper stretch of Loch Long was spectacular.

As was the light on the hills to the west.

This is a view of Carrick Castle on the western shore of Loch Goil. It is believed to have been built in the 12th century, but it is likely that the present Carrick Castle is the second structure to occupy this location. The first may have been a hunting lodge for the kings of Scots. It is recorded that Mary, Queen of Scots visited here in 1563. A Campbell stronghold for over three hundred years, it was captured during the Argyll’s rebellion, by Atholl. The victors pillaged and burned it and completely destroyed it by fire in 1685. It is now owned by Alex Fleming who has undertaken its restoration.
The sun broke through for a short period at the head of Loch Goil.

The is looking down Loch Goil towards Loch Long.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Paddle Steamer Waverley

On Saturday we went for a sail on the Waverley, the last sea-going paddle steamer in the world, during her 60th anniversary celebrations.

She sails between April and October in different places around the United Kingdom, including her home station on the Firth of Clyde, the Western Isles of Scotland, South Coast of England, the Bristol Channel and the River Thames.

She is powered by a 2,100 horse power triple expansion diagonal steam engine, and has two bars, a restaurant, a tea-bar and carries up to 800 passengers. She does not have passenger berths.

I've included a series of photos of the vessel in this post and I'll post some of the scenic ones tomorrow.

This is her coming down the River Clyde from Kilcreggan towards Blairmore Pier.
Arriving at the pier...
Yet closer.....
A view of the engines...
And of a paddlewheel in motion...
And of the engine again...
And of the effect of the paddle...
And, finally, moored back at Blairmore..

Sunday, October 14, 2007


Just before we returned back to Scotland we spent the late morning/early afternoon in Windsor. This photograph is of the Queen's residence, Windsor Castle. The link gives more details as to the antiquity etc. of thisbuilding.

Saturday, October 13, 2007


On the way back from Luxembourg, we stopped off in Slough to go to a wedding. On the Thursday we visited Cliveden, rebuilt for the second time in 1855. It was bought in 1893by William Waldorf Astor, America’s richest citizen who gave it, in 1906, to his son and daughter-in-law, Nancy, Lady Astor, who became the first ever woman MP at Westminster in 1919.

The first photograph is of the main house ....

the second photograph is of the memorial garden dedicated to Canadian soldiers who died during both World Wars or in the hospital in the grounds afterwards. There are other nationalties, including American and British, there as well.

Friday, October 12, 2007


One of the reasons for taking the car over to the continent was to pick up some Luxembourg wine. These are the labels from the boxes I brought back, having bought the wine at the winery.

Almost all Luxembourg wine is consumed within Luxembourg or the border areas surrounding it. The Cru designation shown on the label is awarded to that particular production for that year from that vineyard, as opposed to the French system where the Cru is awarded to a vineyard.

We like it.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Luxembourg - again

Back to Luxembourg to spend a little more time with my sister and to pick up the car.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


The photos today are from a short stop-over we had in Koblenz when changing trains. We took a walk up into the Old Town.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007


Today we have three photos from Frankfurt.

The first is an evening shot from the main town over the river.

The second is a night shot within the main square.

The third is from the river over the 'Mainhatten' skyline which is made up of the offices of Financial Institutions.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Heidelberg - more

Apologies for the missing days, but I had problems....

I'm back at home, but will post some of the photographs from our travels.

Barge on the river Neckar

Church of the Holy Ghost