Walking the canal – 3 April 2021

It was too good a day to spend inside reading.

Indeed it was a day, for getting your boots on and going for a walk along the canal bank. Drove to Auchinstarry and rejected the first car park without looking. Not nearly enough space there. Luckily, at about 10am we found a space in the car park at the quarry. Boots on, new boots for me, and off along the canal tow path. There were crowds of people out there making the best use of the warm weather and the sun. Some were walking in groups, some were in twos, like us and some were going solo. It didn’t matter, as long as they were out, taking advantage of the Easter holiday and the sun. A little note here: As far as I’m concerned, this is the Easter holiday. For as long as I can remember it’s been the Easter holiday because it falls at Easter. I realise there are some who will say it should be called the Spring holiday because Easter may cause offence to those who are not Christian. I don’t consider myself a Christian, but I still say it’s the Easter holiday, because that’s what I was brought up to call it. If you don’t like that, then call it what you think it should be, just don’t expect me to change my opinion.

It wasn’t just walkers out in the fresh air, there were cyclists and joggers too. It seemed that everyone wanted a slice of this warm weather and the feeling that the world was changing for the better. Yes, I know there is forecast to be an Arctic Blast tomorrow, but we’ll deal with that when/if it comes.

We walked along as far as Twechar, then crossed the road and took a different path back, along the old mineral railway line. It was supposed to be upgraded by January past, but they’re still working on it. However, I must say it looks a lot more accessible than it used to. There’s even a tarmac path along part of it, which might be going a bit far for a rural pathway. A good solid hardcore base with some gravel on top would have sufficed as long as it was done properly. Let’s see if it survives the first hard frost.

When we got back to the car, the car park that had been only half full was now chockablock. Cars everywhere and at least two cars cruising up and down hoping for a space. One of them would manage to get into the space we left, but which one would be quick enough, I couldn’t say. We were heading to Kilsyth and Lidl. We went looking for bread and a bottle of gin. We put a whole lot more than that into the trolley. Why are we the ones who trundle forward in the queue only to find that the computer till goes down just as we’re about to put our purchases on the conveyer belt? It mainly seems to happen in Lidl. Last time it was an idiot woman who tried to use a cancelled credit card to pay for her goods. That caused the computer to have a hissy fit and the woman to say she couldn’t see what she’d done wrong. Maybe it’s Kilsyth people who don’t understand how these things work. Today it was the receipt dispenser that went on strike. The manager did his best. He pushed a pen into it, but that didn’t seem to work. I can’t see why. Then, I think he went for his tea because he went into his office and didn’t come back, leaving the till operator to punch button after button on the till to no avail. I’d imaging Ctrl Alt Del key combination, pressed twice would fix things. Either that or pull the plug and push it back in, then wait twenty minutes. Tills are probably running on Windows Vista. (In joke!) When we finally sneaked into another queue and got served, we drove home for lunch.

After lunch we sat on the front step reading. Totally different from sitting inside reading. Scamp had a Pimms and I had a can of Guinness to cool us down, it really was that hot. All the while the iMac was doing a complete backup now I was sure Mojave was working. I knew it would take hours, so I just let it get on with it. I got fed up with just sitting there reading and the Guinness was finished anyway, so I slunk away with the camera to walk a circuit of St Mo’s. Yes, the Fairy Garden is still there, looking pristine. After a couple of photos and one circuit of the pond I wandered over to Condorrat and got a bag of chips to share with Scamp and also a box of Cannoli. This was greeted with great smiles when I returned home. We sat on the front steps in the sun eating chips. What could be more natural.

The bloke next door appears to have discovered fire. He had built a log fire in a big metal bowl in the garden yesterday and again tonight he did the same. It stinks the whole street. I don’t expect it will last long, I hope it doesn’t. When the rain arrives, possibly tomorrow, it will put the fire out and by the time the wood dries out he’ll have forgotten how to make fire again, I’m sure.

PoD was taken as we started our walk along the canal at Auchinstarry.

Weather is forecast to take a turn to the worse tomorrow with high winds blowing from the Arctic and threats of snow even down to low levels. I don’t think it will reach us, but you never know. May do some baking!

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