Sunday, 12 April 2009

the (slightly smaller) joy of angus

this week i'm happy to find that my twenty mile speed is going in the direction it should be and that's before i'm back on my fast bike. the sun is shining so i decide it must be endurance day. yes, i've had two aerobic days in a row and yes, conventional wisdom dictates that at my silver haired old lady age i need to rest more but who am i to listen? so i ignore the tiredness and head back angus-ward for a 50 loop, this time fully stocked with energy bars, gels and bottles of electrolyte, all of which work a treat, even the generally minging electrolyte drink.

again i take the a94 to meigle, slightly less mellow as it's cluttered with people in their cars. so i detour off towards kirriemuir. as soon as i'm on the road tranquillity descends, the sun is shining if coolly and i'm reminded of just how long it's been since i was up these roads. stupid really as the country is very beautiful, very arable, lots of lambs running about, the buildings that solid red sandstone old school agricultural construction. as is kirriemuir, which is surprising picturesque and seems to have avoided the closing of businesses that has affected many of these wee towns. the roads are narrow, the buildings are higgledy-piggledy, there's even some sandstone cobbles just to make my day.

farther on i make a brief stop at the loch of kennordy to view the bird life. there are ospreys here and active, but not while i'm there. a mellow stop tho, and somewhere i'll come back when i've more time. now that i'm out of kirriemuir i'm aware of my proximity to the cairngorms and can fairly feel the cold air washing down the glen. but who cares, detouring out here os to pass all manner of places with cool names - the kirkton of kingoldrum, bridgend of lintrathen, reekie linn and the slug of auchrannie. i feel like i've got a walk on part in sunset song.

lintrathen is lovely, nature reserve, fishery and water supply for dundee. the road snakes down onto it, thru the village and alongside the water. i say hello to a woman out pushing her grand daughter. i'm pleased to see an honesty box so close (relatively) to dundee. i'm starting to feel the hills in my legs and suspect that my fifty mile loop is somewhat more. either that or the 40/60 mile psychological fragility has come early. i confirm it when i get back to meigle. 50 down, 20 to go and not downhill.

it's murder. i see my average speed tumble, my legs ache and the wind becomes comical. six miles to go and i feel an awful sliding in my left knee. not good. but it's only six miles and i tumble back inti the house shortly after. the stretching is ugly no matter, my knee doesn't blow up and it's been a lovely day. so lovely, i get myself together then take t round the whole route in the car.

it's nice but not the same. folk ask me about the why of it from time to time esp as i;m getting less and less inclined to go anywhere where i can;t cycle from my door. i can always come up with some nonsense but today, as i'm listening to the radio and attempting to stretch, i'm provided with as good an answer as any

What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare?-
No time to stand beneath the boughs,
And stare as long as sheep and cows:

No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass:
No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night:

No time to turn at Beauty's glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance:
No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began?

A poor life this if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

W.H. Davies

no, there are no photographs. i should've taken a camera and when i did later of course the batteries weren't working....


Niamh B said...

The stopping and staring works in your back garden too, with alot less effort, yesterday I lay about outside and noticed for the first time ever that the yellow bit in the centre of the dandelions is kind of forked, not like the smooth normal petals on the edge.
Sounds like you had a lovely day tho... good for you.

swiss said...

i employ the same technique in our front garden which is full of wee pink wild flowers. if i was to actually mow the lawn they just wouldn;t be there. as it is i can sit back, enjoy them, and the annoyance of my ocd neighbours!