Not that we need any additional excuse to visit the picturesque Galloway township of St John’s Town of Dalry but a recent yen to re-arrange some furniture in my apartment left me with some ‘stuff’ that had ‘Charity Shop’ written all over it.
Where better to donate it to than the tiny Dalry charity shop run by local volunteers.
The scenic route to Dalry saw us take the twisting left bank road of the River Ken that runs up past the loch and through New Galloway.
It’s one of my favourites with the bike but today we were in Big Foot and instead of calling in at the Old Smiddy Cafe we thought the graveyard by the local church on the hill might be worth a look —
The entrance itself looked very imposing and judging by the multitude of majestic grave stones on view the long time deceased from around here had definitely held themselves in high regard —
We were fortunate to meet a very much alive member of the local gentry who to took a rest from his/her self-alloted task of herding sheep in the field by the grave yard and accompanied by a series of grunts made a bee-line for us and did his/her best to persuade us to join his/her flock —
No worries — I can speak ‘pig’ with the best of ’em and we soon developed an understanding that left us free to to explore the cemetery in peace – and having pacified the pig what a peaceful place it was.
The massive stones marking the last resting places of local lairds and their families were too numerous to point a camera at but there were one or two smaller ones that intrigued me.
With some of the smaller stones nearby dating back to 1669 this one with musket – powder horn – dog and duck may have been carved by the laird from the castle at the head of the loch for his weel thought of gamekeeper —
Another next to an imposing section for the famous Galloway Faed family of artists with what I take to be a palette and crossed brushes barely needs words – just as well because they are carved on t’other side where the weather has eroded them —
Even the Angel’s get a mention in this bonny place —
But the snow-capped mountains to the north beckon —
So-o — during our next stop at the charity shop we spotted a framed photograph of a picturesque waterfall supposedly near Dalmellington we decided to head north for a look-see —
At first glance Dalmellington may not have a lot going for it – and – having endured a long drawn out change of bus’s in the windswept town centre during a snowstorm while on my way to Prestwick Airport a few years back I can vouch for that —
A guid Scot’s tongue can get you most places and when I spotted what I took to be a local photographer parked in a layby on the outskirts of the town I had picked the right person to ask for directions —
It transpired that he had photographed the falls many times and it was a fortuitous meeting – without a name nor map we would never have found Dalcairney Falls – well hidden as they are off the Straiton road to the west of Dalmellington.
Happiness is egg-shaped —
A short walk across some fields on the way home put us in view of Threave Castle glowing in the low sun with a few roe deer grazing in the foreground —
O yes they are — we may not have had much sunshine this winter but we certainly enjoy it all the more when it comes —
or goes as in this case 🙂