In early July, John took a week off work. This coincided with the time when restrictions on how far you could travel for leisure in Scotland eased slightly, and we ventured into the countryside for the first time since lockdown. Not too far, just over the city boundary to East Dunbartonshire where we discovered a network of Trails + Tales, several of which we followed.
The Baldernock trail started at the pretty parish church, and had attractive views – even if we could still see the city in the distance.
The Torrance Trail started at the village war memorial. It was cold and wet as the pictures probably show.
A feature of most of the trails is a series of public artworks (Jaqueline Donachie’s tributes to women health workers already appeared in my Three times a lady post). Here we found Gumnut and a whole row of eight or nine Scholars Rocks, one of which had been customised with a small plaque reading “ALS and RR Kissing Post 2019”. Aww!
My lockdown hair was bad, but not usually this bad! The wind and rain had done their worst. Towards the end of the walk we came across a row of tenements which looked quite odd set amongst fields.
Once back in Torrance, we added on an extra loop out to Cadder Church via the River Kelvin and the golf course, and back along the Forth and Clyde Canal.
Lennoxtown / Clachan of Campsie trail
The highlight of this day was not part of the trail as such. We went “off piste” to tour the immaculate grounds of Schoenstatt. The Apostolic Movement of Schoenstatt is a Roman Catholic Marian movement founded in Germany in 1914 by Father Joseph Kentenich. Its name, which aptly means beautiful place, refers to a small village near Koblenz. Schoenstatt Scotland operates as a Retreat Centre.
The final trail we followed was round the town of Kirkintilloch and the nearby village of Waterside. It was very green with parkland, river and canal, an old cemetery to explore, historic buildings, and artworks. There was even a ghost sign to enjoy. However, we got very wet again – John does know how to pick a week off!
So those were our first, baby steps outside the city after lockdown: life was starting to feel more normal. Linked to Jo’s Monday Walks. Her temperatures are a bit hotter than mine!