Yesterday was the delightful assistants’ 53rd wedding anniversary.
Acting as chauffeur, I whisked them off into the county of Angus for a tasty luncheon, an invigorating walk and afternoon treats.
Here they are attempting to gaze lovingly at each other for the camera:
They found this highly amusing.
Delightful assitants in a more natural pose.
Delightful assistant no.1 chose to go to Peel Farm, near Kirriemuir, for lunch:
A welcoming sign at the entrance to Peel Farm.
We arrived nice and early, a little before noon.
The entrance to the coffee shop at Peel Farm, decked out with wreaths and other Christmas decorations.
Due to our fortunate timing the coffee shop was unusually empty, which allowed me to take a photograph of the inside.
Inside the lovely Peel Farm coffee shop, unusually empty of hungry punters.
The delightful assistants wisely chose a table at the fireside end of the room, from where we all ordered a farmhouse special of soup with a roll and butter, followed by a scone and tea or coffee.
Delightful assistants perfectly placed near the fire with bowls of hot soup.
Delightful assistant no.1 and I both chose carrot and parsnip soup, while delightful assistant no.2 had red pepper and tomato.
Carrot and parsnip soup with a crusty roll.
Our soups warmed us up, and when they’d been polished off it was time for scones.
There were three options available: plain, fruit, and raspberry. After considerable deliberation I plumped for raspberry, while delightful assistant no.1 chose fruit and delightful assistant no.2 chose plain.
My choice of a raspberry scone – I was not in any way disappointed.
A fruit-studded scone for delightful assistant no.1.
A beautiful plain scone for delightful assistant no.2.
A delicious jam was delivered with the scones and delightful assistant no.2 felt that his plain scone gave the perfect base for it.
The jam was a new creation by one of Peel Farm’s master jam makers and was a combination of plum and orange. It tasted a bit like marmalade because of the orange, and it had a wonderfully zingy sweet flavour. Delightful assistant no.1 christened it ‘jarmalade’. Here’s a blob of it on my raspberry scone:
Raspberry scone with a blob of jarmalade on it.
I wasn’t too sure how my raspberry scone would fare as a platform for such a sprightly spread, but when I tasted them together I was immediately won over and slathered the rest of my scone with the stuff, enjoying each mouthful with gusto.
When we’d finished our scones and downed our tea and coffee we had a quick look in the Peel Farm craft shop where I spotted the happiest little gingerbread men I think I’ve ever seen.
Cheery wee chaps on a string.
Utterly delighted to meet you.
We got back into the car and drove to nearby Loch of Lintrathen, which has a level road all round it, virtually devoid of traffic and very pleasant for strolling along.
It was grey and chilly but we walked briskly, enjoying the fresh air and the noise of wind in the trees and on the water.
Loch of Lintrathen.
Quite a few branches and twigs lay scattered about after recent high winds; delightful assistant no.2 fashioned one such branch into a walking stick.
Delightful assistant no.2 taking twigs off the fallen branch of a larch tree.
The old chap making use of his newly acquired walking equipment.
On our walk we passed a well constructed bird hide, and I popped in to see what I could spot.
Loch of Lintrathen bird hide – I had it all to myself.
I didn’t see anything particularly unusual, although someone had noted a white tailed sea eagle in the visitor’s book a couple of weeks before.
Gateway to the bird hide at Loch of Lintrathen.
After my bit of birding I caught up with the delightful assistants and we scooted on to the nearby town of Kirriemuir to seek out an afternoon snack.
On past visits to Kirriemuir I’ve been unable to find interesting tearooms, so my hopes weren’t terribly high.
We parked in the free cark park and walked towards the town centre.
Delightful assistants keeping each other upright.
Before we even reached the main street, to my astonishment and delight, we passed this promising looking establishment down a little alleyway:
A side window at The Auld Surgery Tearooms in Kirriemuir.
Just around the corner we found the front door, and swiftly sailed in:
Front entrance to The Auld Surgery Tearooms in Kirriemuir.
The interior had a charmingly rustic farmhouse feel with solid wooden furniture and gifty things dotted about. We perched ourselves at a table for three:
Seated comfortably close to the wooden dresser where there was a selection of tasty looking treats.
A dresser showing off its cakes and biscuits.
Delightful assistant no.2 was the first to make up his mind and went for a mug of hot chocolate and a mint chocolate traybake, which was enticingly decorated with broken bits of fondant-filled mint thins:
Chocolate mints on top of a traybake – a stroke of genius.
Although very fond of mint chocolates, I thought this traybake might be too sweet for my tastes. However, having tasted a piece of the one in the photograph, I would gladly return to Kirriemuir just for a slice of this excellent confection.
As it was, I went for a slice of fruit loaf with butter, downed with a cafetiere of decaf coffee:
Delightful assistant no.1 also had coffee, but in the solids department she made a traditionally festive selection:
Delightful assistant no.1’s choice of a mince pie. Such a good girl, she didn’t make a fuss about the lack of cream.
After enjoying our treats we had a quick squiz at a few of the items for sale, some of which were displayed at the bottom of a gracefully curving banister:
One item in particular took the fancy of delightful assistant no.1.
In her youth she remembers having a little wooden rocking horse that rocked very nicely, and when she saw something similar at The Auld Surgery Tearooms she didn’t want to go home without it:
Small wooden rocking horse with teacup: a happy ending to a lovely day.