With Valentine’s Day falling on a Sunday – blue skies all around and no sign of red flags flying over the Military Range it was an easy decision to go walk in the footsteps of poor Mary from Dundrennan Abbey where she had taken shelter while on her way to seek sanctuary with her cousin Queen Elizabeth of England.
Things didn’t go well for Mary down south – Good Queen Bess saw her as a threat to her own throne and locked her in the Tower of London as soon as she set eyes on her.
Our Mary had a tough time for the most of her stay on this earth as it was a perilous business being King or Queen of Scotland five hundred years ago. I very much doubt if she enjoyed her walk from the abbey to the mouth of the Abbey Burn where a small boat waited to spirit her over the Solway Firth to England where an uncertain fate awaited her.
This old yew tree growing close to the trail must be about a thousand years old and there’s a fair chance it is the one that Mary Queen of Scots was reputed to have sheltered under before completing her journey to the boat.
Not much of a harbour when she reached there – just a narrow inlet which can be virtually dry at low tide.
Another mature tree dwarfs the walker – a Douglas Fir if my guess is right.
Mid February is a time for bare trees.
and hollow trees too – with no sign of our Mary in there.
We will just have to settle for a multitude of snowdrops —
rushing waters —
and whatever else takes our fancy —
Being born a Royal wasn’t always what it was cracked up to be —
and being a gargoyle on a gatepost doesn’t appear to be much fun either 🙂