12 feb The way back from Glasgow, “Solfie’s Road 2 Glasgow”. Part 11
A cycle tour on e-cargo bikes with ideas from the lowlands through Belgium, France and England to the high hills of Scotland. See for information about the birth of this crazy story: https://solfie.nl/road2glasgow-en/
November 4, 2021
City of Edinburgh – Wooler?
Beautiful route from Edinburgh, first along the coast and then driving diagonally to Wooler (our last stop before the Ferry in Newcastle.
Wonderfully sunny, few clouds, but fresh.
As soon as we drove further south, the route went more and more through beautiful nature reserves and the hills became proportionally higher.
Enjoying the vastness, that was it, sheep walking across the road. Occasionally a car passes by with somewhat surprised looking drivers.
Especially towards Lammer Muir Hills, almost a lunar landscape. Although tough, we occasionally stopped to look back and enjoy the view (you could even see the sea).
Yes, okay, we also stopped every now and then to take a breather.
Furthermore….. The slope became increasingly steep and riding on from a standstill became increasingly difficult. Solfie’s obesity was quite a determining factor in this.
With about 150m to go to the mountain top, disaster struck! At first I thought of a broken chain, but it had only been renewed by Paul from the Babboe company, but well… you don’t know.
Checked in a parking spot to see if it was the chain. I could have fixed that, Paul had given me materials for that and showed me how to do it.
Unfortunately, the chain was not. Standing still you could turn the pedal and the chain too, but the wheel ‘didn’t grab’.
Immediately contacted Paul by phone who also immediately picked up. He watched via video call and together came to the conclusion that something must have been broken in the hub of the rear wheel. He immediately started calling around to get help for us, including contacts in Edinburgh.
In the meantime, it was very windy and cold on top of that Lammer Muir, we decided not to wait and to continue our way on foot to stay warm.
On the way, a taxi passed first, followed by a woman of advanced age. The taxi driver could offer that he would try to approach someone at the next village who might be able to help us with a trailer or van.
The lady, Alison, in the second car immediately after hearing our story took the phone to call her son. He had a van with a cargo box that could accommodate the bicycles. Her son Melvin could and wanted to help us. We decided to walk the right direction while Melvin would come our direction.
We approached Whiteadder Reservoir, a beatiful place where I initially had planned our lunch!
Right after crossing the bridge Melvin met us and we could start loading the cargobikes into his van.
One option was that he would take us to Wooler and from there we would see how we would end up in Newcastle (maybe we could have the bike fixed somewhere in the meantime). Alison (the angel) had approached a few repair shops but all were unable to help (one due to lack of material, the other due to having tested positive for Corona!).
One alternative turned out to be ideal: Alison and her husband Bill run a guesthouse in Ellemford, Duns. The name couldn’t be more appropriate: “Green Hope”….
And our worries completely disappeared when son Melvin indicated that he was willing to take us to the Ferry next day….!
Arriving at the Guesthouse, hidden in a very wooded area, along a stream / river Whiteadder, the complex turned out to consist of the house of Alison and Bill, linked to a house of daughter Sarah (with son-in-law Scott) with children.
Next to it is a complete apartment with living room, kitchen, bedroom and bathroom. Our stay for that night. How delightful! This had to be.
We could choose that evening to eat there or to go with them to a weekly meeting with dinner between Christian friends, where, in addition to eating together, a piece of prayer and Bible stories were always discussed.
Although we are no longer very close to the faith, the whole course of today still gave us the feeling that we wanted to go along with it. Everyone brought something to eat (mostly vegetarian) and it wouldn’t be late anyway.
It became a very nice experience, good food, and afterwards discussing a bible text. It is really special to hear how those texts, translated to the present, can be an interesting breeding ground for problems that our society has to deal with. People talked about climate change, sustainability and the COP26 and not because we were there, apparently because this community was very involved in it.
God works in mysterious ways….!
Because of all this convenient coincidence we thought Alison and Bill deserved our last copy of our First Aid for Climate Change” by Anabella Meijer and the book “Human Kind” by Rutger Bregman.teaser “