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      • Tuesday 3oth. September, 2014 – A quiet day

        Last year this was my final day at work. I left Luss Manse for the final time in the late afternoon and drove down to my new home, accompanied by Rachel and Cathy. I remember being entranced by the beauty of this area, something which I now try extremely hard not to take for granted. Thi

      • Tuesday 30th. September, 2014 -- Digger's new car

        This morning I remembered to take a picture of Digger's new car and post it on the web-site primarily for the benefit of his brother in Australia. So here you are, David, a picture which not only shows the vehicle but which let's you see the bright sunshine in the Scottish Bord

      • Monday 29th. September, 2014 – David’s birthday

        This morning we relaxed in the summer house. Here David and Tom have been ‘jamming’ with some of the guitars which normally adorn the walls of the summer house while I was making coffee in the background

        Up and walked Mix before breakfast. Tom and David arrived. We made fi

      • Sunday 28th. September, 2014 – Harvest Festival

        One of the several Harvest displays in Gavinton Church this morning – the Church was decorated and looked really good and during the service we were reminded of all of the different harvests for which we had to be grateful, as well as being challenged about poverty throughout the world

      • Saturday 27th. September, 2014 – Not quite as planned

        A picture taken by Dorothy of the Ellemford Show. What a wonderful marquee

        I rose and walked Mix and soon afterwards Tom and Dorothy arrived on their way to the Ellemford Show. I had been looking forward to going with them but there were things which required my attention at M

      • Friday 26th. September, 2014 – A delivery and a trip to Wooler

        Today was the day of the Wooler Auction and Tom and I duly set off to see what was on offer. It was a disappointing auction with not very much on sale and not very many people there to buy either (as the picture above shows). However the rolls with sausages in them (covered in brown sauc

      • Thursday 25th. September, 2014 – Progress

        This morning Tom, David and I completed the clearing of the Bothy and then set out the plastic membrane onto which the concrete will be poured. Next we created the shuttering which will hold the concrete in place. My picture shows David and Tom fitting some of the shuttering in place. It

      • Wednesday 24th. September, 2014 – Working Away!

        This evening the Bothy is illuminated in preparation for our laying of the floor over the next few days

        Walked Mix before breakfast and then breakfasted in the farmhouse (eventually – no-one was awake when I went across the first time).

        Tom and David arrived sharp

      • Tuesday 23rd. September, 2014 – We go car-hunting

        This afternoon Mix and I went for a walk along Bramble Avenue. One tree is covered in apples – hundreds of them. We discovered on our return that Olive had already collected up some of the fallen fruit and we enjoyed stewed apples for dinner. Everything here is so fertile – and wonde

      • Monday 22nd. September, 2014 – Rachel sets off for Barnoldswick

        This is a picture of The Chandlery in Berwick, of the cafe called Lowry after the celebrated painter of the same name who had connections with Berwick. David brought me here this afternoon when we were out and about. I had a splendid hot chocolate

        Up and walked Mix before brea

      • Sunday 21st. September, 2014 – Tea at the Ritz

        Sitting down around the table in the Manse dining room for 'tea at the Ritz'. From the left: Bridget, Rachel, Mum, Ann and Tom -- all slightly thrown into silhouette by the strong sunshine coming in through the window

        I was up just after eight, showered and packed be

      • Saturday 20th. September, 2014 – 50th. Anniversary Reunion

        This is Woodlands Hotel in Barnhill which is less than a mile from where I lived for the duration of my primary education. I took the photo because it is the venue for the fiftieth anniversary of my school year leaving Dundee High School

        I got up and walked Mix and then got my

      • Friday 19th. September, 2014 – We buy another tree

        Woke early and walked Mix before Joining Tom and Dorothy to drive into Berwick to collect the table and chairs I bought a couple of days ago. We loaded them onto the trailer and brought them back to Mount Pleasant via Duns where we dropped Dorothy off. Tom then brought the trailer to Mou

      • Thursday 18th. September, 2014 – While Scotland votes, I go off to Stirling

        It is a grey day and I am parked next to a grey car just ready to go into the building in the picture for the regular meeting of the Scottish Pilgrim Routes Forum. It is a long drive but at least there is always a parking spot

        I was up early as Rachel had to go off to the firs

      • Wednesday 17th. September, 2014 – We plant a tree and attend a film festival

        This is the tree we planted. It is a Rowan and we planted it today because it was Rachel’s Mum’s birthday and she would have liked it. Mind you, it wasn’t easy. We discovered that our back lawn is sown on top of a huge amount of building rubble and when digging the hole for the tre

      • Tuesday 16th. September, 2014 -- We go sailing

        David and Tom on board Escapade as she journeys across the Whiteadder reservoir. It turned out to be a lovely day and I took my cheap camera with an underwater housing (which I had got to go to the Red Sea several years ago) so it didn’t matter if we turned over

        Up and walk

      • Monday 15th. September, 2014 – The Works Outing

        Today we found ourselves in B & Q in Galashiels. Tom was keen to buy a particular kind of lantern (appropriately called a Polaris) but it was kept high on one of the shelves and, try as we might, no assistant was available to assist our purchase. So David commandeered a step ladder o

      • Sunday 14th. September, 2014 – It’s Sunday again

        Over the garden fence, Digger has been digging in his allotment. This year there were potatoes in the strip which has been dug, I wonder what will appear next year?

        Rose, showered, walked Mix and breakfasted in the farmhouse before Rachel drove Mum and me to Gavinton Church. A

      • Saturday 13th. September, 2014 – A Gorgeous Day

        After a slow start, today turned out to be gorgeous: the sun shone down and it was certainly a day to be outdoors. I took this picture through the window of the summer house. Rowan is lying in wait for Rachel who has gone down into the woods to collect brambles. Yesterday she took Rowan

      • Friday 12th. September, 2014 – Back at the coal face

        Rachel is painting the barge-boards on the Bothy. At one stage Tom said to me, “We better hurry up with these barge-boards, Rachel is catching us up.” Well, we ended the day with all the boards in place and now we can turn our attention elsewhere

        Up and walked Mix before b

      • Thursday 11th. September, 2014 – A long day

        A view of Westside Plaza in Wester Hailes, a suburb of Edinburgh. It is here that Rachel and I come to visit our dentist, Andrew. Andrew used to be our dentist in Buckhaven but when he moved to Edinburgh we followed him

        Up exceedingly early and had showered and walked Mi

      • Wednesday 10th. September, 2014 – An early start to Lindisfarne

        This is the view of Lindisfarne which many people think of when they hear the name Lindisfarne -- I think more immediately of the holy places, but there is no denying that this is a special view, and one which we enjoyed as we walked towards the castle this morning in the brightest sunsh

      • Tuesday 9th. September, 2014 – I hone my tour-guiding skills

        It has been a long day and Ewen is in the childrens’ playpark at Paxton House. He has tried the shute but finds the zip slide more to his liking. Jane looks on

        Up and walked Mix quite early (Ewen came with me as we explored Bramble Avenue) so that we could be on our way and

      • Monday 8th. September, 2014 – Mix is returned to health

        Mix relaxes on his cushion in the summer house, his favourite place – I think that he is a bit of a chameleon, blending perfectly with his surroundings (but only when he is on this cushion)

        Woke and walked Mix. He seems to be back in good health with a cough that has disappe

      • Sunday 7th. September, 2014 – We go to Church – twice – and have dinner with a friend

        This is the picture I promised to post on the 4th. of September: the view of the rear of the Granary with the grass cut! It looks just as it did a year ago except for the apple tree in the foreground and the Summer House in the background. I think that is a duvet which Rachel has placed

      • Saturday 6th. September, 2014 -- Away for the day at Chester-le-Street

        Today I was part of a goodly crowd at Chester-le-Street, the home of Durham County Cricket Club, where I watched Durham book their place in the final of the fifty-over competition by roundly defeating Nottingham in the semi-final

        Up early in time to see Mum off on her annual t

      • Friday 5th. September, 2014 – One year and one day

        Just one year and one day after we arrived Tom sets up the sign with the name of the property over the entrance gate. It doesn’t look great in the photo but driving towards it, the black of the sign stands out against the sky and proudly proclaims Mount Pleasant Farm


      • Thursday 4th. September, 2014 – One Year On!

        I took this picture this morning. I took a similar picture exactly a year ago (well it was in the afternoon) and things look remarkably similar – but what a lot has happened during our first year here

        Up and walked Mix (I didn’t breakfast because I was still full of food f

      • Wednesday 3rd. September, 2014 – We travel to Longforgan for Elizabeth’s funeral

        We deliberately arrived early at Longforgan in order to have adequate time to walk the dogs after their lengthy car journey. Walking along the side of a field, I took this picture of the Church from quite far away. One of my friends, Jim Jack, with whom I studied at Princeton, was minist

      • Tuesday 2nd. September, 2014 – Certainly not what I expected

        This evening I was in Coldstream Church for the annual Presbytery Service of Holy Communion conducted by the retiring Presbytery Moderator, the Reverend David Taverner. I enjoyed the service very much indeed but I was surprised and more than a little disappointed by how few members of th

      • Monday 1st. September, 2014 – This diary is now a year old!

        Mix loves to be in the summer house and he loves to accost Digger as he walks back and forth to his allotment. Sometimes Mix can be very noisy, but when I went to take this picture he was as quiet as could be. I suppose that he knows about the blog and realises that he will be better tho

      • Monday 1st. September, 2014 -- My friend Alan McNaught

        I learned yesterday of the death of my friend Alan with whom I spent very many happy hours during my almost nineteen-year stay in Buckhaven in Fife.

        I don’t remember the first time I met Alan but I do know that it was very soon after Rachel and I arrived in Fife. Very quickl

      • Sunday 31st. August, 2014 – A Late Summer Sunday

        In the early afternoon Cathy had to set off for home (given a lift by Anne who was driving home to Gourock). The sun was shining down and, before they left, I took this picture of those who were to hand: Digger, Catriona (Martin’s partner and someone who is special here not least becau

      • Saturday 30th. August, 2014 Our ‘event’ goes well

        As I stood on our driveway this evening, waiting to direct cars into the courtyard, I was taken by the beauty all around as the evening shadows lengthened over this recently harvested field. What a glorious place in which to live

        Woke and walked Mix. David arrived and continue

      • Friday 29th. August, 2014 – Final Preparations

        Today was a day of final preparations. Here the Stables have been set out ready for our ‘event’ tomorrow and Tom and David (one singing and one posing for the picture) are trying things out. It is going to be fun

        Up and walked Mix before breakfast. Tom arrived early and we

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