Jane's Travel Blog

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Peebles, Scotland – Round Two

Since our house sit in Vancouver that ended in late May, I’ve been to Philadelphia, Brooklyn, Albany, Milwaukee, Stevens Point, Royalton, Denver, Door County, Madison, and back to Milwaukee. Just listing these locations makes me tired yet it’s where my people live so its been the best of times.

We arrived June 30 in Peebles, Scotland which is the first place we have returned to since we started our adventure. Both house sits invited us back to care for their pets. As Peebles is one of our favorite places, we were more than happy to return. And, after all the visits in the US, it’s a great place to relax and regroup.

Our first week was at Hannah’s with the dogs Rusty and Nell, and her cats Sparkles and Ernie. Each morning the dogs and I walked through the enchanted woods where fairies and elves live.

Now we have moved over to Julie’s with Misty the whippet. Our morning walk takes us up to a ridge overlooking the rolling hills, the patches of foxglove and grassy meadows of Scotland. Each morning I’m inspired by the sweet smell of the morning dew and the sound of the wind.

Hiking trails cover the countryside and we plan to hike as many as time allows. Bob, Misty and I took our first hike following the River Tweed past the Neidpath Castle, built in the 14th century. We continued up the ridge overlooking wooly grazing sheep and a picturesque view of Peebles.

Oh, almost forgot. Bob and I both had birthdays in July. Bob celebrated with an ice cream cone. We celebrated my birthday with lunch at an 11th century hunting lodge, a place where royalty hung out. Happy Birthday to us.

In between the spots of rain, we plan many more hikes and cherish every minute in magical Peebles before heading to the French Alps in mid August.


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Peebles, Scotland

A new chapter in our life experiment begins – housesitting.

So far… MARVELOUS.

We arrived in Peebles, Scotland. Hannah, the homeowner and her parents John and Molly greeted us with wide smiles and a cup of tea. We met our charges, Rusty the dog, and Ernie & Sparkles, the two cats. We learned the basics about the house and Hannah showed me the dog walking route through the field and into the woods. I get to take Rusty on this enchanting walk every morning.

We settled in for the our two week house sit, slept soundly in the country quiet and I woke refreshed and ready for my first walk with Rusty. There was a light rain to start, and the sun was peeking out before we finished. We have since learned that this is called a “sun spell” as in, “There will be periods of sun spells today.” We are learning if there’s a sun spell, get outside, because you just don’t know how long the spell will last. There are rain spells too. It’s all good, you just need to be prepared.

We caught on to the habits of our menagerie and Bob’s a sucker for Rusty. He gives him lots of belly rubs, and for those who know Bob, this is an amazing thing.

The hiking here is first-rate. If we wanted, we could take the “best-hike-ever” every day. That’s a little joke we have. After a hike, we often say, “That was the best hike ever.” Now we say, “I know I said this about the last hike, but this really was the best hike ever.” The rolling hills and woods keep us wanting more. I didn’t think I was a country girl, but maybe. I’m loving it.

As for the house sitting, we’re at Hannah’s for two weeks then move up the road to Julie’s house to care for Misty the dog for a total of one month in Peebles.

At the end of July, we take the train to Stockport, a suburb of Manchester, for another house sit for Kimba the dog, and then settle in for a 6 week house sit near Southampton. There are a few days between Stockport and South Hampton where we visit Lucy Edge who has written two entertaining books, Yoga School Dropout and Down Dog Billionaire. Bob met her during his Elephant Journal days. I can’t wait to ask her about her writing.
Our first few weeks of house sitting have been wonderful and we look forward to many more house sits.