Thursday, 12 April 2018

Follow Me: Scotland - Balloch (2)

Thursday, 12 April, 21h43, UK time

Today has been another day with loads of stories happening. And as is the case with life, you cannot plan these things to happen, but you have to be open to spotting them and make the most of the experience. Well, tonight's post is about a dog, a tree, a coffee shop, and a camera.
Our first stop this morning was the Balloch castle with its beautiful woodland gardens. We didn't expect the woodlands and had a lovely walk through all those trees. After the requisite pictures of the castle, we set off on the walkways picking a tree here and a lake view there to capture with our respective cameras.
At one point Francois meandered closer to the water while I remained walking on the path, just enjoying the peaceful albeit cool morning. There were many dogs about, taking their owners for a stroll and a few ball games to exercise their legs.
One dog however, make me laugh. His owner, a lady, would throw his ball down the path and he would set off after it. Unlike other dogs who returned the ball to be thrown again, this black labrador ran after the ball, collected it, and then promptly put it down on the path. The woman would then walk to the ball, it was exactly on her way, collect it and throw it again, while the dog patiently waited for his human companion to catch up. Not your normal way of doing things, but it clearly works for them.
When Francois and I caught up again, we were both at the kiosk where a jetty is also constructed to launch a boat from. Two swans swan up to him, an adult, and a younger bird. The adult had no hesitation to come out of the water prancing around to show off his gorgeous wings. Had to be a male bird, if you ask me. When he returned to the water, he kept his wings posed high. I am no swan expert, but I looked at Francois with an arched eyebrow: "with a come-on like that, you would expect at least a dinner and a movie." He just shook his head at me.
After a visit to Dumbarton castle, we went shopping for glue tape. Weird, but I use them with my journal and travel journal, and yesterday the one I brought from home ran out. We found a craft store that stocked them, to my greatest delight since these things are scarce and expensive at home. I bought one, and two refills. Despite the exchange rate, it was well worth the expense.
After a light lunch at a nursery coffee shop (we sniff them out) we made a quick stop back at the Inn to try and figure out where the tree is everyone was egging us on to find. I mean, a tree? Seriously? We're in Scotland for crying out loud, there is hardly a mile where you don't fall over a whole forrest. But we found the tree, and got into the car.
And half an hour later, we found the culprit on the shore of Loch Lomond. And not in the water as people said it would be. Well, the lake was clearly not as full as the last time someone else took that 'tree' picture.
I cannot tell you which kind of tree it is, but I can tell you it was well and seemingly healthy. Judguing by the buds on the branches, it is preparing for spring that's for sure.
While Francois set up and took his next award winning photographs, I walked around trying to look useful. I found a pinhole camera stuck in another tree looking directly at 'the tree'. The question I asked myself is why would someone be recording the goings on of a tree, or are they rather observing the things that people do with and around 'the tree'. There was a note attached to the camera with an email address to get hold of the owner, if required for some reason. My first thought when I saw that: well, I hope you don't have to fly halfway around the world to fix the camera, because it will be a long trip. Here is to you, Simon Robertson, your camera recorded me taking a picture of it, and here I am putting your story on my blog. High five!

My story of my tour of Scotland is about to end, so if you haven't subscribed to my newsletter yet, you should hurry. The competition will run next week, and you are only eligible if you are a subscriber.
Find more pictures of our story @ Instagram

💜 Linzé