We attempted our first venture out of the school holidays today. Nothing too much, a fairly safe one as it doesn’t actually involve getting out of the car unless we have a picnic with us. Today wasn’t a picnic day.
We hit the A68 and headed north. Stopped off at Carter Bar for a quick coffee, in the car. Watched a dedicated piper dressed in kilt brave torrential rain to welcome a bus load of tourists across the border. Although we couldn’t quite hear the tune he was playing for the noise of the rain drumming on the car roof! OH took the 12 year olds photo standing in front of the boundary stones. For some reason
the 12 year old has a real thing about walking on his ancestral Scottish soil and as he puts it
“breathing in good Scottish air”
We keep trying to explain to him that as we only live about 12 miles from the Scottish border (as the crow flies) the air isn’t really going to be all that different but he isn’t having any of that. So we allow him a few minutes out of the car to plant his feet on hallowed ground and gulp in a few mouthfuls.
Then we motored west and down towards Kielder. The weather was simply beautiful. Grey, overcast, low clouds skimming the tops of the hills, steam rising from the pine forests, sail boats stationary on the silver dam. No, I’m not being sarcastic. I love this beautiful region and inclement weather often only adds to it’s beauty. Unfortunately I haven’t any photographs to offer you, J isn’t keen on stopping and our coffee break meant we’d already pushed our luck. Hopefully over the next few weeks we’ll head up there again and I’ll see what the gods will allow!
Finally we followed the North Tyne back down into the Tyne Valley and home. J was starving when we got in and sat cramming sandwiches and grapes into his mouth as he resumed the video he’d been watching on his computer before we left.
It may only have been a couple of hours out of the house, it may have been right on our doorstep but it always leaves me wanting more when I head up there. J enjoys the car ride and we spend most of the journey flicking conversation between local and family history which the 12 year old seems to enjoy. I guess we’re lucky that we live so close to places that touch the soul so easily.