Turf Blog 28-02-24

The 28th of February is usually the last day of February, only this year there’s an additional day added, the 29th, because 2024 is a leap year, which is something to do with aligning the calendar with the Earth’s orbit. I’m just glad I wasn’t born on the 29th of February. Mind you, I’d not be 62-year-old, I’d only be 15.5 years old as I’d only have a birthday every four years. Cool, or is it? Yikes! I’d still be a teenager, hmm.

Now, blogging about turf is sometimes difficult, often exceedingly so, and especially after more than three years doing so. So, what can I blog about today? Okay, let’s start with a request for more medals. One for taking FTT zones and another for hunting down turfer unique zones. There, done. Actually, the latter was my mission today. Hunting zones held by Topsyturfy down in the Seafield area of Edinburgh.

I could have taken public transport. I could have driven the car. However, I’m trying hard to do my part in saving the planet by not doing these things and sticking to my trusty and highly efficient bicycle. Personally, I think all turfers should be doing their part as well, by avoiding planes, trains, buses and automobiles, in preference for non-motorised transport such as the bicycle and kick scooter, as well as walking and running. Could there even be a medal that rewards turfers who avoid the infernal combustion engine?

Turf Zone – MusselShell

Anyway, also managed to take 69 zones as well, cycling from Bonnyrigg, across to the Seafield area and back via Musselburgh, which is rather pleasing. Along the way a message popped up on the turf app. A hello from Tandem, who I assumed was on the train or perhaps she was running along the track. Actually, saw the train stopped at Newcraighall station but I couldn’t see anyone. Also met another turfer GMturf down at Portobello. Always good to stop for a chat though it can be a bit hit and miss if they will stop.

You know someone is there and if you’ve never seen them before you don’t know what they look like. Are they male of female? Are they young or old? One clue is to look for someone glued to their phone screen. I actually passed GMturf initially and thought he looked like a turfer, so stopped. He also stopped way back and was doing the same. Soon we caught each other’s eye and stopped to chat.

Returning from Musselburgh along the River Esk, I noticed this plant and thought it unusual. Snapped a picture and used Google Lens to find out what it was. Turned out to be Lathraea clandestina or Purple toothwort, a parasitic plant that grows on the roots of various tree species, especially Alder, Poplar and Willow. The plant was traditionally used to treat toothache, hence the name. Cathryn a.k.a. ChoccyMuffin, head gardener here at home, tells me the word wort actually means plant. You live and learn.

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