3rd March 2020
Mrs RM has been a bit poorly, confined to her sickbed the last two days while I bring her Scottish pancakes, aubergine stir fry and black coffee.
She’ll recover, and was devastated that my trip to sup Bass in Burton yesterday was cancelled. Thank you for your best wishes; I’ll survive.
I’d set off with four days of clothes, my entire wardrobe, but without a plan.
On a whim, I headed to Scotland; you never know when they’ll close the border.
Yes, into Dumfries & Galloway, two counties merged in 1977, presumably as part of the SNP cost saving measures and a lucrative sponsorship deal with an Italian fashion brand.
This pic shows the extent of our assault on Page 237 of the Navigator.
Even Waterbeach Barry the bloke who fixed my Aygo till recently had seen more of the south-western edge of Scotland than I had.
“It’s lovely” said Barry.
And he’s right. If you love emptiness and forests. And long place names.
Makes the Dark Peak look like central Manchester. Not a soul to disturb my view of Claterringshaws Loch.
And here’s the bustling Main Street of St John’s Town of Dalry, which you’ll see from the photo has been a major irritant in my pinking of the GBG;
The village tourist sign promises much,
and to be fair it’s a pretty place for a 20 minute wander, with some handsome houses and a great graveyard. The Clare (Suffolk) of the North.
You can’t beat an old bridge leading to nowhere.
I’m always wary of published opening times, but as Duncan said to me, Scottish pubs tend to stick to hours irrespective of custom, and for that I thank them.
The Clachan is a stunner, cosy and warm and welcoming. With proper seating.
What I hadn’t expected was the exciting beer range;
This looks like a destination ale pub, a bit like the Trust in Peebles , and I wondered if there was the custom to support beers that weren’t called “Tennents” round here, but the Lowland was a cool, creamy wonder (NBSS 3.5). The amiable Landlord enjoyed me counting out my £1.85 in 5p pieces.
No-one in for “Haggis and clapshot potato” £6.50 lunch yet.
One chap in the corner reading the Galloway Gazette nursing a pint, one Old Boy sitting at the bar enjoying the whole of Ed Sheeran’s LP, the one I can’t find the symbol for on my keyboard.
Even Ed couldn’t ruin my 20 minutes of quiet contemplation of a little classic.