Monday 4th May (Day 53 of 236)
Another day off came around, fortunately another dry day but even with the sun shining it was cold, but it wasn’t going to stop us having a day out. The question was, “What should we do ?”. The safe crossing times to visit ‘Holy Island‘ were still not in our favour, it was still too cold to take a boat trip around the ‘Farne Islands‘ and Shazza wasn’t up for visiting ‘Bamburgh Castle‘. So, we just decided to get into ‘Wuxly’ and drive along the Coastal Road North from Berwick, a Shazza mystery tour no less !!
Our first ‘Port’ of call was ‘Eyemouth‘, we had no idea what to expect or what we would find, we parked up in a ‘free’ car park and headed down to the harbour.
There were a group of people gathered around the railings so we went to see what was happening. Perhaps someone had fallen into the briny, that would certainly pull in a good crowd, but no, it was even better entertainment than that, these people were feeding fish heads to Grey Seals. You could tell that the seals were quite accustomed to being fed regularly in this manner as they came right up to the harbour wall, waited for the fishy treats to be clamped on to the string on the end of very long poles and then lowered to them, however, if the fish was not secured tightly enough and fell into the sea before reaching the awaiting mouths then scavenging seagulls were in like bullets and away again before the seals could get there.
We stood and watched for a little while, well long enough to start feeling cold again, we needed to keep moving, the sun may have been shining but someone forgot to turn the heating element on !
Eyemouth is only a very small seaside town, not on the grand scales of Blackpool, Scarborough or Brighton, however, it was pleasant enough with its small semi-circular beach facing out to the small harbour entrance. Although breezy with a chill in the air it was nice to see small family groups building sand castles, walking along the water’s edge or just staring out into the blue nothingness. We could well imagine this place being packed to the gunnels on a hot summers day with windbreaks and deck chairs battling for every available inch of sand, but for now, with Summer and searing temperatures just something we remembered in our imaginations, it was peaceful. It didn’t take us long to wander around the streets of this little town and once we had meandered enough, with nothing to entice us to stay, not even the waft of freshly cooked Fish ‘n’ Chips, we made our way back to ‘Wuxly’ and consulted our road map.
Not too far away, just a few miles up the Coast Road, was the smaller Coastal village of ‘St. Abbs‘, however, we also noted that there was a footpath along the Coast that led to some ruins and a picnic spot, so we decided to leave that for another day’s exploration, one that involved wearing walking boots and having a picnic in a remote sandy cove. We decided to head for ‘Dunbar’, for no other reason than it was the next largish coastal town on the map.
Inside the car, with the sun’s warmth radiating through the windows, it was a lovely drive along the narrow winding country roads, we both agreed that if we had been in Portugal in ‘Big Momma’ we would have been raving on about such magnificent views, yet here we are in our own Country and the views are just as stunning, pity about the temperature difference though !!
It wasn’t long before we arrived in Dunbar, we had no preconceived expectations, we didn’t know anything about this place, this really was a bit of a mystery tour for the both of us. We drove up the Main Street, looking for a convenient place to park, our initial impressions were not great, it looked a little bit desolate, not a scruffy or dirty town but neither was it very pretty. “Now we are here” she said, “We may as well have a look around“. I didn’t disagree, mainly because I needed a ‘wee‘ as well as beginning to feel a bit peckish, oh how I wished we had decided to have been tempted by the waft of those Fish ‘n’ Chips in Eyemouth !!
Fortunately, or so we thought at the time, once we had parked the car and started to walk down the Main Street, we got another waft of that unmistakable scent of ‘Fish ‘n’ Chips, we followed our noses and soon were sat inside a Fish & Chip shop waiting for our order of Cod ‘n’ Chips, Bread & Butter and a nice pot of tea. I don’t know if we can call ourselves ‘Connoisseurs’ but we have eaten enough of this very British Traditional Fayre to say what are good and what are not so good, these were in the ‘Not So Good’ category. We concluded that as we were in Scotland they were probably much more accustomed and so much better at producing their own local delicacy, Deep Fried Battered Mars Bars !! We unanimously agreed to purchase ‘dessert’ elsewhere.
Being a Coastal town we knew that the sea would not be very far away and so headed in what we guessed was the general direction, well we were at the top of a hill so by our limited geographical knowledge we knew we should be heading downhill, we were correct !! On the other hand though, we had been wrong and once again learnt never to judge a book by its cover. This place didn’t have one harbour, it had three and a ruined Castle that you could walk around, for ‘Free’ !! Come on England, you really have to stop mugging people when they come to visit your attractions.
We were enjoying exploring the three harbours, each had something different and provided different views. There was a ‘kittiwakes‘ nesting area, Now to us they just looked like seagulls, albeit smaller, however, once we read the information boards, that were dotted around at strategic points, we were suitably educated.
We were all walked out but we had had a great afternoon in Dunbar, before we headed back to ‘Wuxly’, there was just a little matter of that ‘dessert’……………..