Sunday 30 September 2018

IOM - Beaches

Funnily enough, as the Isle of Man (IOM) is an island, it has lots of beaches.  Over our five visits we have seen quite a few,  but there are many more that we haven't visited as yet.  Let's have a look at the ones we visited this time.

 This little map by Alice Qualye illustrates them well. Source

Port Erin is right at the south of the Island.  It has a lovely sandy beach and you often see little sail boats out in the bay.  St Catherine's Well was the source of fresh water which enabled the settlement to be set up.

We enjoyed lunch in a little tea rooms beside the beach on one of the rare pleasant weathered days.

Our one and only meal of queenies on this trip.  Queenies are small scallops which are fished at the Isle of Man and rather tasty.  There is even a festival for them.

Bradda Head and Bradda Tower dominate the landscape down here.

Here is a view of the beach from Bradda Head, with the little tea rooms to the left of the beach, next to the lighthouse.

Peel is a lovely town on the western side of the island.  It has about the nicest sandy beach, which is frequented by lots of swimmers and little children playing in the sand.  As you can see there is a castle at one end of the beach.

This is the view looking towards the other end of the beach.

You cross a little causeway to reach the castle.

Down the other side of the causeway there is another little beach, Fenella Beach.  It is always littered with heaps of scallop shells.

We were hunting for sea glass but only found one tiny little piece.

We did notice this painted rock not far from the beach.  We saw a few of them around the island.  Rather sweet.

One beach we have to visit each time is at the Point of Ayr, the most northern tip of the island.

No sand here.  Previously we have been here at high tide and it is quite noisy as the rocks rub against each other with the movement of the tides.  This time the tide was out and it was rather quiet compared to normal.

No sand castles here.  I had fun building this teetering tower and hoping it would stay long enough for me to take a photo.  

We have a tradition that we write a note with the stones on the grassy bank - always in the same place.

That's a better photo.  You can actually read it.

The second smaller light house was built as the shore kept moving further from the original one.  Now the second one is quite a distance from the shore line.  The fog horns are no longer used.  I'd have loved to have heard them.

The lighthouse looked stunning with all the gorse.

Ramsay is another town with a long beach.  It looked rather calm on our first visit.

We visited a few days later and it was a little different.

You start to get a feel for what it can be like in winter, and I know this is nothing compared to the size the waves can sometimes reach.

That is Queen's Pier in the background.  It is in  a poor state of repair, but a restoration has just begun.  I do hope to see it in its former glory at some stage in the future.

That sea really was quite big.

As the weather was bad we just went driving.

This is the beach in the capital of Douglas.  Admittedly, it was high tide, which made everything seem more extreme.

This is the only other photo showing any of Douglas beach, in calmer times.

And finally, back to the Castletown area.

To the south of the harbour it is just rocks.  It isn't a good photo, but this is quite a nice garden that unfortunately get pretty much washed away in bad weather.   You have to admire the tenacity of the owners.

To the north of the harbour there is a little promenade with a long sandy beach in front of it. 

 We had a nice walk along here looking for sea glass, with minimal success.

It was nice seeing this horse and rider enjoying the sand.

The final beach we visited was Derbyhaven, which was not at all picturesque at the time we visited.

However, it did provide the mother load of sea glass and china.  We had received a tip off from the owner of the store in Peel where I bought my Isle of Man cross stitch that this was the best place to find it.  She was dead right, and it was just coincidence that we were there at low tide.  I'll show it to you shortly.

This isn't quite a beach, but it is the southern most point on the island, The Sound and the little island is the Calf of Man.

Another thing we seem to do is come down here on the afternoon of our last day on the island.  It is a lovely, peaceful place (and the cafe does good coffee and cake).

The weather was glorious and we even had a seal come quite close and check us out.

There are other beaches that we have visited previously and still plenty that we hope to visit at some stage in the future, but I think we did rather well to see what we did.

Saturday 29 September 2018

September One Monthly Goal and Other Bits and Bobs

It seems to be a trend that I complete each month's goal by the skin of my teeth.  However, at least I do generally meet the goal, which is the main thing.

Ta da!

I'm so pleased to finally have this little project finished, considering it was started way back in 2011.

One day I will have to arrange to hang all my minis.  I have quite a few in a drawer, some dating back to the very start of my patchwork journey, about 20 years ago.

I'm linking up with Elm Street Quilts where you can see what others have been up to this month.

I'm also happy to have something to report for One Project a Month with Peg and Kris.

Last weekend we were blessed with some glorious weather.

The Sidecar Rally was held at O'Connell over the weekend, but with one thing and another we had forgotten about it, and then weren't organise to camp, so on the Saturday we rode Snubby the silver side car (no photo of her this time) out in the afternoon for a quick visit and then joined some friends for afternoon tea at the cafe.

You get some rather creative machines turn up.  I've never seen a bike with a snorkel before.

On the Sunday with hopped on "Sophia" the Moto Guzzi and rode out to Hill End with the Panorama Motorcycle Club.  We were trying to work out when we last took her for a ride, other than for her rego check, and it appears to be to the Snowy Mountains back in January 2016!!  Poor neglected Sophia.  It didn't take us long to get back into the swing of being on a solo and she ran beautifully.  We should use her more often.  This was only the second time we have been on a run with this club and the first time that we were all on modern bikes.  It is always a gamble as to how fast they go and how they travel as a group.  Well, we had a lovely time.  The pace was good, as was the company.  We'll have to try to go along more often.

That night a cold change came through and Monday was back to winter.  We had been so lucky with the weekend weather.

It is about time I gave  you an update on our garden.  I took a few photos on the day we went overseas and then some more when we returned home.  Things changed quite a bit in that time, but we did get to enjoy our daffodils and wattles, which I thought we may miss out on.  They are all quick snaps, but you will get the general idea.

Our daffodils were just starting to show buds.  These are the ones that cam from down near Rydal.  They didn't flower at all last year, probably due to being transplanted.

We were delighted to have them flower after we returned home.

The snow drops we had brought from Mum's garden were just sticking their noses out of the raspberry bed.

They were in full bloom when we came home.  Since then they have finished flowering, and the raspberries have heaps of growth coming through.

The view towards Mt Panorama showed bare trees and fog on the river flats.

We had a day with unusual clouds not long after we came home.  Notice the green growth on the weeping willow and the pink blossom tree.

Our street trees are starting to get some growth on them.

As is the crab apple.  I should have photos of it in full bloom before long.

The grevillia is looking a picture.

As were the wattles out the front.  They were just coming into their prime when we returned.

They do look lovely in front of the house at this time of year, but may need a bit of a hair cut after they have finished flowering.

The Pink Accent daffodils we bought down at Rydal have now bloomed.  The trumpet started as a pale lemon and each day the pink intensified.  It is now nearly finished and the pink is starting to lose its intensity.  They are now planted in front of the letter box so everyone can see them next year.

And that's about all I have to report.