Maybe I shouldn't say it too loudly, but I am ENJOYING THIS WINTER! We have had loads of blue skies and sun and the cold air is revitalising. Today I took full advantage of the weather. Frank and I got our running gear on and headed west down the railway track. We got to Cottyburn and joined the road up the big hill near Bangley quarry and along to the junction of Aberlady road, instead of going down the hill to Haddington, we carried on along a track to the Dirlton road. From there it is a quick uphill to the track across to Barney Mains. Once we reached the farm we went downhill and across the A199 along the road to the river path and back into Haddy. We were running for 1hr 31 mins and I guess it was 11 miles long. I felt pretty good throughout the run with my usual injury suspects being kept at bay. The last time I remember doing this route was a couple of years ago. It is a good one for a day like today because there are plenty of different types of terrain and get some splendid views.
Later I took Harvey along to North Berwick. He has been prescribed lots of rest to recover from his broken toe and I thought the beach would be ideal for a short walk, being soft underfoot. Now if you or I had a plaster on our leg, we could be fairly certain that strangers in the street would not want to tell us what a shame it was and ask how it happened. You've guessed... Harvey got a huge dose of sympathy and people who did not stop to talk to him looked at him with big doe eyes and then turned to look at me questioningly. Call me paranoid, but I felt like saying 'it wasn't my fault honest.'
The other reason for going to the beach was to have a second go at rowing. Last weeks session had left me with sore knees from knocking the oars into them and an achy back, not to mention ham strings... don't mention them. I thought that the problem was a lack of adequate space for my long legs. This week I got a seat in the bow and put the foot rest, that you push against, to the furthest point it would go. Conditions were ideal... a calm sea and little wind. The four of us rowing and the cox, worked together well and we flew across the water to Craigleith Island. When we got there, a seal popped his head out of the water and gave us a long inquisitive inspection. On the way back I had a chat with one of the crew about the Earthwatch programme which this week followed Barnacle geese through Europe and up the east coast of Scotland, including some great arial views of Tantallon Castle and Bass Rock. If you haven't watched it, have a look on iplayer... well worth it. I was in the last boat out, which meant we came back to a magnificent sunset. My opinion of rowing so far is very favourable.