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LOCH VENACHER, (AGAIN).

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

HEY THERE EVERYONE. WELCOME TO ANOTHER ONE OF MY CAMPING BLOGS. THIS ONE WILL, HOWEVER, BE MORE PHOTOGRAPHIC THAN ANYTHING.

WE SET OFF WITH A HAPPY HEART ON THE TUESDAY AND THINGS WERE LOOKING REALLY GOOD WEATHER WISE. THE SUN WAS SHINING AND, ALTHOUGH THERE WAS A LIGHT BREEZE, IT WAS QUITE BEARABLE.

AFTER UNLOADING THE CAR BOTH PAUL, MY GRANDSON AND I, HAD REAL FUN. WE GOT THERE AT AROUND 1PM AND IT TOOK US NEARLY FOUR HOURS TO ERECT THE TWO TENTS. BOTH OF US HAD NEW TENTS AND HAD NOT A CLUE HOW THEY WENT UP. SUFFICE TO SAY IT WILL DEFINITELY NOT TAKE AS LONG THE NEXT TIME NOW THAT WE KNOW WHAT WE ARE DOING. WE DID HAVE A GOOD LAUGH AT OURSELVES, THOUGH BUT WERE DEFINITELY READY FOR FOOD AFTERWARDS.

THE UNFORTUNATE THING WAS THAT WE COULD NOT CAMP WHERE WE DID BEFORE BECAUSE, HAVING HAD SO MUCH RAIN, THE LOCH WAS THAT FULL. I WILL SHOW YOU WHAT OUR FORMER CAMP SITE LOOKED LIKE LATER.

SUFFICE TO SAY THAT BOTH OF US WERE READY FOR AN EARLY NIGHT, ALTHOUGH WE DID HAVE SOME FUN IN THE EVENING AS I INTRODUCED PAUL TO THE ART OF DOING ANAGRAMS.

UNFORTUNATELY, THAT IS BASICALLY IT. WE HAD ONE KIND OF DRYISH DAY AND ONLY ON THE DAY BEFORE WE WERE DUE TO LEAVE DID WE GET A REALLY DECENT DAY AGAIN, SO THE CAMP WAS A REAL FAILURE. ALL WEEK WE HAD GALE FORCE WINDS AND THAT RESULTED IN MY TENT SUFFERING A SMALL TEAR IN THE FLY SHEET, HELD TOGETHER BY DUCT TAPE, AND A SPLIT POLE SECTION. FORTUNATELY, BOTH ARE REPAIRABLE SO I WILL NOT HAVE TO THROW THE TENT AWAY. IN FACT, HOW EITHER TENT STAYED UP IS ANYO0NE'S GUESS AS WE REALLY DID GET BATTERED AND AT TIMES THE RAIN WAS TORRENTIAL. I JUST FELT SO SORRY FOR PAUL AS HE COULD HAVE BEEN AT HOME WITH HIS FRIENDS DOING OTHER THINGS RATHER THAT JUST SITTING AROUND INSIDE A TENT ALL DAY.

ON THE PLUS SIDE, I DID INTRODUCE PAUL TO SOME FOODS THAT HE HAD NEVER TASTED AND HE EVENTUALLY SAMPLED THE DELIGHTS OF CAMP FIRE COOKED POTATOES AND TOASTED MARSHMALLOWS. HE GOT QUITE HOOKED ON THE MARSHMALLOWS ESPECIALLY, LOL. THE SAD THING WAS THAT WE COULD NOT MAKE A BIG FIRE, WHCIH WE WERE ABLE TO DO LAST TIME. THE FIRE PIT WAS ALREADY THERE SO WE MADE USE OF IT, BUT WITH THE WIND FACTOR, IT WAS TOO LOSE TOT HE TENTS TO HAVE ANYTHING BUT A SMALL FIRE GOING.

DESPITE EVERYTHING, THE CAMP WAS NOT GOING TO PUT PAUL OFF AND, ALTHOUGH I WILL BE GOING AGAIN IN JUNE, HE I LOOKING FORWARD TO COMING AWAY WITH ME AGAIN IN JULY, WHEN WE WILL BE VISITING A DIFFERENT LOCH. HE IS ALSO GOING TO SPEAK WITH IS COUSIN TO TRY AND PERSUADE HIM TO COME ALONG AS WELL, AS IN THE END PAUL CAME ON HIS OWN, AND THAT DIDN'T HELP AS HE HAD NOBODY OF HIS OWN AGE TO BOUNCE OFF.

SO TO THE PHOTOGRAPHS.

FIRST OFF, THE TENTS:

COME ON INSIDE: FIRST OFF MY BEDROOM - AND NOW THE LIVING ROOM - (AS YOU CAN SEE, IT IS SET FOR THREE AND THE STORES ARE AROUND THE BACK AND THE SIDES).
NOW FOR THE CAMP FIRE STUFF. FIRST OFF A PICTURE I CALL 'CAUGHT NAPPING'.

COOKING POTATOES

PAUL TOASTING MARSHMALLOWS.
JUST TO SHOW THAT WE DID GET SOME FISHING IN -
AND THEN THERE IS ME, BUGS BUNNY ENJOYING A WELL EARNED CUP OF COFFEE, LOL. (HAVE INCLUDED THE BIG PICTURE AS WELL AS THE CLOSE UP TO SHOW YOU WHAT AN IDEAL SPOT IT WOULD HAVE BEEN BUT FOR THE WEATHER). AND THEN OF COURSE THERE WERE THE VISITORS -
TO SHOW THAT WE STILL HAVE A LITTLE BIT OF SNOW LEFT OVER -
THE NEXT SET OF PICTURES SHOWS WHAT OUR OLD CAMP SITE LOOKS LIKE NOW.
THIS IS NOW THE ONLY DECENT BIT OF BEACH LEFT, WHICH IS WHY WE CHOSE TO CAMP WHERE WE DID

THE LAST LOT OF PHOTOS WAS TAKEN BY PAUL. NO WAY COULD I HAVE CLIMBED TO THE TOP OF THE HILL WHICH WAS OVER THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROAD. HE MANAGED TO GET SOME STUNNING SHOTS, AND I HAVE CHOSEN THREE OF THEM TO SHOW YOU, THE LAST OF WHICH IS MY FAVOURITE AND IS A VIRTUAL SILHOUETTE, ALTHOUGH TAKEN IN BRIGHT SUNLIGHT.


IT WAS A WEEK THAT SAW THAT OUR TENTS COULD WITHSTAND A REAL GALE. IT SAW THE TENTS KEEP US DRY EVEN THOUGH AT TIMES WE HAD TORRENTIAL RAIN. IT WAS A WEEK THAT REALLY WA, SADLY, A LITTLE BORING FOR PAUL. IT WAS A WEEK THAT SAW BOTH OF US TRYING OUT NEW SLEEPING BAGS, BOTH OF WHICH KEPT US NICE AND WARM. FINALLY, AND THE REAL BONUS, WAS THAT IT WAS A WEEK THAT SAW US BONDING AS WE HAVE NEVER BONDED BEFORE. THUS, NOT EVERYTHING WAS ON THE DOWNSIDE. WE JUST HOPE THAT WE DO GET A SUMMER AND THAT THE NEXT CAMP WILL SEE SOME BETTER WEATHER.

TA TA FOR NOW. UNTIL THE NEXT ONE.......

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

-WISPY- 4/17/2014 5:54PM

    HI THERE MAC, GLAD TO HAVE YOU BACK HOME SAFE AND SOUND.
LOVING THE BLOG AND PICS. WHAT A SHAME THE WEATHER WAS NOT BETTER FOR YOU GUYS, BUT HAVE TO SAY YOU LOOK VERY HAPPY ON IT.
SURE HOPING THE WEATHER WILL BE BETTER ON YOUR NEXT TRIPS AWAY.

HUGS WISPY. HAVE A GREAT EASTER WEEKEND.

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DEE107 4/17/2014 12:52AM

    so sorry for the bad weather but hope you had fun

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ARTJAC 4/16/2014 11:58PM

    HI MAC SORRY THE WEATHER WAS BAD BUT IT SHOULD BE BETTER IN JULY I HOPE GREAT PHOTOS TTFN JACQUE

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SHERRY666 4/16/2014 2:40PM

    OH MAC I'M SORRY YOU HAD BAD WEATHER..... BUT THE TENTS HELD OUT AND THE SLEEPING BAGS KEPT YOU BOTH WARM...... YOUR TENT IS BIG AND LOOKS SO COMFY..... IT'S TOO BAD YOUR OTHER GRANDSON DID NOT WANT TO COME..... BUT IN THE END YOU AND PAUL BONDED AND THAT IS WORTH THE WHOLE TRIP....

LOOKING AT THE PICTURES YOUR CAMP SITE LOOKS VERY COSY..... EVEN THOUGH YOU HAD RAIN AND HEAVY WINDS YOU BOTH MADE THE BEST OF THE WEEK........ NOW I HOPE NEXT CAMP TRIP IS MUCH BETTER WEATHER FOR YOU......... THANKS FOR SHARING YOUR WEEK WITH US MAC......... I'VE BEEN EXCITED TO HEAR FROM YOU AND HOW THINGS WENT...... GREAT BLOG....

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CAROLIAN 4/16/2014 12:56PM

    I love it in that area but haven't managed a camp trip for year Hugs xx
Great pic's emoticon

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SDEHNKE 4/16/2014 12:37PM

    I think I remember most vividly the times we went camping and had to brave the elements. We spent that time all together playing cards or talking etc. Those were the best times. I think you and Paul will look back and realize what a special time it was. emoticon

Suellen


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SONGBIRDPAULA 4/16/2014 11:57AM

    emoticon emoticon

I so much enjoyed this blog and the pictures! It surely was a wonderful time of bonding. Thank you for sharing all of this with us. It has been so long since I've been camping anywhere and with anyone. My DH camps when he goes hunting, but I haven't gone with him since I've been disabled. I hope you have many more of these outings and have each one to be more fun than the previous one.

Have a wonderful day and rest of the week!

Paula emoticon

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LOCH VENACHAR PART 2

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

DEAR DIARY, DAY 1- GOOD; DAY 2 - GOOD; DAY 3 -IFFY; -DAY 4 - TERRIBLE; DAY 5 - A BIT BETTER; -DAY 6 - IFFY.

WOULD I LEAVE IT AT THAT? NOT ON YOUR LIFE. YOU WOULD NOT BE BEST PLEASE WITH ME IF I DID, LOL.

SO, WE HAD A LOVELY RIDE OUT ON THE WEDNESDAY AND THE SUN SHONE BRIGHT AND EVERYTHING WAS GOOD. MARY HELPED ME PUT THE TENT UP AND SO IT WAS DONE IN QUICK TIME, WE UNLOADED THE CAR ALTHOUGH TRISH WAS BANNED FROM COMING DOWN AS THE SLOPE WAS A LITTLE STEEP FOR HER WITH HER STICK AS WELL AS CARRYING STUFF. AFTER THAT I WAS LEFT TO SORT EVERYTHING OUT AND GET MYSELF ORGANISED.

I HAD DECIDED THAT I WOULD NOT BE DOING ANY WORK ON THE FIRST AFTERNOON BUT RATHER I WAS JUST GOING TO CHILL OUT PLUS TAKE SOME PHOTOGRAPHS TO SHOWYOU.YOU MUST FORGIVE THE FACT THAT SOME OF THEM LOOK AS IF THE LOCH IS RUNNING DOWNHILL. IT IS PURELY THAT WHEN I HOLD THE CAMERA UP I START TO SHAKE AND OFTEN HAVE TO HAVE SEVERAL GOES BEFORE I CAN GET A HALF DECENT SHOT. ALSO, THERE IS ONE PHOTO OF THE TENT THAT IS REALLY BRIGHT. UNFORTUNATELY, AS I WAS TAKING IT THE SUN DECIDED TO REALLY SHINE BRIGHT THROUGH THE TREES AND SO I WAS TAKING THE SHOT DIRECTLY TOWARDS THE SUN RATHER THAT THE OTHER WAY AROUND. ALSO, YOUWILL SEE THAT SOME ARE REPEATS BUT I WANTED TO SHOW YOU THE DIFFERENT LOOKS OF THE PLACE ON ANY GIVEN DAY. ALTHOUGH THE MAJORITY OF THE PICTURES WERE TAKEN ON THE WEDNESDAY I DID SAVE SOME TIME DURING THE CAMP TO TAKE OTHERS BEFORE THE BATTERIES FINALLY GAVE OUT.

SO, THE FIRST THING TO WATCH FOR IS WHERE YOU PITCH YOUR TENT. THE FIRST PHOTOGRAPH IS OF THE LOCH SHORE AND IT IS PRETTY MUCH THE SAME ALL THE WAY ALONG, SO YOU HAVE TO GET BACK FROM ITA LITTLE WAY IN ORDER TO BE ABLE TO GET THE TENT PEGS IN THE GROUND WITHOUT BENDING THEM.


HENCE THE REASO9N WHY I PITCHED MINE HERE.
AND SINCE YOU HAVE SEEN THE TENT BEFORE I WOULD LIKE TO INVITE YOU INSIDE MY HUMBLE ABODE.

(THIS IS WHERE I APOPLOGISE FOR THE SUN BEING IN THE WRONG PLACE, LOL).
THE SECOND THING TO LOOK FOR IS A DRY PLACE WHERE YOU CAN DRY STUFF ON A MAKESHIFT WASHING LINE, BUT MORE OF THAT LATER.

SO, THE AFTERNOON DRIFTED BY AND I ENJOYEDA LOVELY PEACEFUL AFTERNOON IN THE SUN JUST RELAXING AND DRINKLING COFFEE.

DAY 2, THURSDAY, WAS THE FIRST OF MY WORK DAYS. I AM DOING A PROJECT FORTHE CHURCH WHICH WILL ULTIMATELY RESULT IN AN ATERNATIVE HYMN BOOK. OFTEN PEOPLE DO NOT KNOW SPECIFIC HYMNS BUT THEY DO RECOGNISE SPECIFIC TUNES. A LOT OF HYMNS GET MISSED FROM SERVICES BECAUSE OF THIS. WHAT I HAVE BEEN DOING IS TO MARRY THESE OFTEN UNKNOWN HYMNS WITH TUNES THAT EVERYONE KNOWS SO THAT WE CAN INCORPORATE THEM INTO OUR SERVICES. I STARTED THIS PROJECT AT HOME BUT I JUST COULD NOT GET THE TIME OR THE PEACE TO BE ABLE TO CONCENTRATE ON IT FULLY, HENCE THE REASON I WANTED TO GO ON THIS CAMP, (AMONGST OTHER THINGS, OF COURSE).

I WORKED ON THIS RIGHT THROUGH THE MORNING AND GOT A FAIR BIT ACCOMPLISHED, BUT ALL WORK AND NO PLAY..... SO AFTER LUNCH I WENT FOR A SHORT WALK AND THEN DECIDED TO TEST THE WATERS OF THE LOCH. UNFORTUNATELY, AND AS YOU WILL SEE, THE LOCH IS REALLY LOW BECAUSE IT IS THE END OF A LONG SEASON AND WE ARE WAITING FOR THE WINTER SNOWS TO COME DOWN AND REPLENISH IT. THIS MEANT THAT I COULD WADE OUT SO FAR BEFORE STARTING TO SINK INTO THE SANDY BOTTOM. UNFORTUNATELY, THIS WAS NOT SO FAR OUT THAT I COULD ACTUALLY SWIM, BUT IT WAS REFRESHING NONE THE LESS AND WAS THE FIRST OF A COUPLE OF PADDLES DURING THE CAMP. ONE OF THE THNGS ABOUT CAMPING WHRE I DID WAS THAT YOU GET VISITS FROM THE FOREST RANGERS. THEY THOUGHT I WAS STARK RAVING MAD FOR EVEN PADDLING AS THEY THOUGHT THE LOCH WAS FREEZING. HAVING BEEN BROUGHT UP SWIMMING IN MOUNTAIN STREAMS AND TARNS AS A YOUNGSTER I WAS NOT GOING TO BE PHASED BY A SCOTTISH LOCH, LOL. AS MUCH AS ANYTHING IT ALSO WASHED ME DOWN A BIT AS WATER WAS AT A PREMIUM. IT WAS THEN THAT I FORGOT WHERE I HAD PUT MY KNIFE, FORK AND SPOON ANDDESPITE AHVING THE TENT UPSIDE DOWN I SIMPLY COULD NOT FIND IT.FOR THE NEXT TWO DAYS I WAS TO EAT USING A TEASPOON ONLY BEFORE FINALLY COMING ACROSS THEM AGAIN.

I DIGRESS, THOUGH. DAY 3, THURSDAY MORNING WAS A FREE ONE AS I WANTED TO GET A LITTLE EXERCISE SO I SHUT THE TENT UP AND WENT FOR A NICE STRIOLL ALONG THE WATER'S EDGE. I DISCOVERED THAT PEOLE TREAT SUCH PLACES WITH CONTEMPT A LOT OF THE TIME AND WITH NO THOUGHT. THE AMOUNT OF LITTER I CAME ACROSS WAS APPALLING ADN NO WONDER THERE ARE LITTER PATROLS SENT OUT VERY SO OFTEN. IT IS A DISGRACEAND PEOPLE LIKE THESE SHOULD NEVER BE ALLOWERD NEAR TO SUCH A BEAUTIFUL PLACE. IT IS THE SAME WITH THE FIRES. SEEMINGLY EACH GROUP WANTS THEIR OWN FIRE PITS RATHER THAT USE THE ONE IN THE AREA. YOU WILL SEE THIS CLEARLY IN THE PICTURE OF THE TENT AROUND WHICH YOU WILL NOTE THERE ARE THREE OF FIVE IN THE ONE LOCALITY.

THURSDAY AFTERNOON WAS SPENT ON THE PROJECT FOR THE MOST PART ALTHOUGH I DID THE THE FIRST OF A FEW VISITS FROM THE RANGERS. APPARENTLY THEY HAD TO CHECK ON TENTS TO FIND OUT IF THEY HAD PEOPLE IN THEM OR NOT. WHEN I ASKED WHY THEY SHOULD HAVE TO DO THIS I WAS FLABBERGASTED TO FIND OUT THAT QUITE FREQUENTLY THEY COME ACROSS TENTS WHICH ARE SIMPLY ABANDONED, AND APPARENTLY THERE ARE SOME REALLY GOOD ONES AMONGST THEM. I SIMPLY COULD NOT BELIEVE WHAT I WAS HEARING. TO SPEND OUT ON A TENT AND THEN ABANDON IT JUST DOES NOT MAKE SENSE TO ME. OBVIOUSLY SOME PEOPLE HAVE MORE MONEY THAN SENSE!

WHAT I WAS FINDING WEIRD WAS THE FACT THAT BY 8PM THE LIGHT WAS FADING SO MUCH THAT BASICALLY I HAD TO USE MY TORCH. THE PROBLEM WAS THAT MY HAND HELD DECIDED TO GO ON THE BLINK AND THE ON/OFF SWITCH DECIDED TO TO WORK PROPERLY. FORTUNATELY, I HAD MY HEAD TORCH AS WELL SO I WAS STILL ABLE TO READ.

AFTER TWO REALLY GOOD DAYS THE WEATHER COULD NOT LAST AND IT STARTED TO BREAK ON THE FRIDAY. THE FIRSTSIGN WAS THE WIND. EVERY AFTERNOON AROUND 3PM THERE IS A WIND THAT COMES DOWN THE CALLEY AND STIRS UP THE WATER A BIT. IT IS QUITE STRONG BUT REALLY CAN ONLY B DESCRIBED AS A HEAVY BREEZE. NOT ON FRIDAY. TO START WITH THE SUN HAD DECIDED NOT TO APPEAR AT ALL AND THE SKIES WERE DARK AND GREY. I DECIDED THE BEST PKACE TO BE WAS INSIDE THE TENT SO THAT IS WHERE I STAYED. I WAS ABLE TO CONTINUE WITH THE PROJECT AND ACTUALLY I GOT THE FIRST GO THROUGH FINISHED JUST AFTER LUNCH. JUST AS WELL AS WHEN THE AFTERNOON WIND CAME IT TORE DOWN THE VALLEY LIKE A STEAM TRAIN AND THE TENT REALLY SHOOK HARD. LUCKILY THERE WAS A FAIR BIT OF WEIGHT IN IT TO HELP ANCHOR IT DOWN. FINALLY THE WIND DIED DOWNAND THINGS WENT RELATIVELY QUIET FOR A WHILE. I KPT EVERYTHING CROSSED BUT TO NO AVAIL. AT AROUND 8PM THE HEAVENS OPENED SO I DECIDED TO CALL IT A NIGHT AND GO AND SNUGGLE DOWN HAVING MADE UP A COUPLE OF FLASKS OF HOT WATER SO THAT I WOULD HAVE A HOT DRINK. DURING THE NIGHT THERE WAS NO LET UP AND THE RAIN CONTINUED TO COME DOWN IN TORRENTS. I WOKE UP ON SATURDAY MORNING TO DISCOVER THAT MY TENT WAS SHOWER PROOF ONLY.

DAY 4, SATURDAYWAS NOT TOO BAD WEATEHR WISE AS THE RAIN HAD FINALLY STOPPED AND THE SUN WAS OUT AGAIN. JUST AS WELL ASDUTING TYHE NIGHT THE RAIN HAD BEEN SO HEAVY THAT THE SO CALLED WATERPROOFING COULD NOT TAKE IT AND I WOKE WITHA WET CAMP BED PLUS WET BEDDING AS WELL AS OTHER BITS AND PIECES WHERE ITEMS HAD BEEN TOUCHING THE WALLS OF THE TENT. THIS IS WHERE MY FORESIGHT AND PLANNING HAD COME GOOD AS I HAD ALREADY RIGGED UP THE WASHING LINE IN A PLACE THAT, BECAUSE OF THE TREE CANOPY, DID NOT GET WET EVEN DURING THE 'MONSOON' WE HAD EXPERIENCED.

JUST BEHIND THE GRASS THERE IS ACTUALLY A DEFINED TRACK SO IT IS NOT AS BAD AS IT LOOKES, LOL.

IT WAS NOT THE LAST TIME I WAS TO PUT THIS PLACE TO GOOD USE. I HAD TO HAVE SOMEWHERE TO DRY MY TRUNKS AND ALSO THE SHOES I WORE WHEN GOING INTO THE LOCH. I WAS NOT GOING TO GO BAREFOOT ON THAT KIND OF STUFF, BUT IN ANY CASE I HAD INVESTED IN A PAIR OF SHOES ACTUALLY MADE FOR THE PURPOSE. THIS IS WHEN THE AFTERNOON WINDS CAME IN HANDY AS THEY ACCELERATED THE DRYING PROCESS QUITE A BIT.

SATURDAY AFTERNOON WAS SPENT LITERALLY JUST CHILLING OUT. I WAS INOT UP FOR DOING ANY WORK AFTER THAT MNORING.I DID HAESOME CROSSWORD BOOKS WITH ME AS WELL SO I CONTENTED MSELF WITH DOING SOME OF THESE. IT IS AMAZING HOW QUICKLY TIME FLIESEVN WHEN YOU ARE NOT REALLY DOING A LOT.

IF I THOUGHT THINGS COULD NOT GET ANY WORSE AFTER A MORNING OF DRYING OUT SOGGY BEDDING AND STUFF, I DID NOT RECKON ON THE SATURDAY EVENING AND, AS IT TURNED OUT MOST OF THE NIGHT AS WELL. A GROUP OF AROUND HALF A DOZEN MEN APPEARED AND SET UP CAMP OSTENSIBLY ON A FISHING WEKEND. TAKING THE LOCATION INTO CONSIDERATION, THERE WAS NO WAY THEY WERE GOING TO CATCH ANYTHING OTHER THAN MAYBE A COUPLE OF SMALL FISH AT THE OUTSIDE, BUT ALTHOUGH THEY ALL GOT RODS OUT, I STILL THINK THIS WAS AN EXCUSE. COME NIGHTFALL THE FIRE WAS LIT AND THE CAMP GATHERED AND OBVIOUSLY THE BEERS WERE BROUGHT OUT BY THE CRATE LOAD I SHOULD THINK. THE EVENING STARTED OFF PLEASANT ENOUGH, ALTHOUGH WHY THEY HAD TO TALK SO LOUD IS BEYOND ME. SOUND TRAVELS FURTHER AT NIGHT ANYWAY BUT I DON'T THINK ONE OF THEM KNEW HOW TO TALK QUIETLY. AS THE EVENING WORE ON THE TALK GOT EVEN LOUDER AND THEN THE SINGING STARTED. I WOULDN'T MIND EXCEPT THAT A LOT OF IT WAS REPETITIVE AND WAS DEFINITLY OUT OF TUNE. YOU KNEW IT WAS LATE WHEN ONE OF THEM SUDDENLY DECIDED TO LET THE WORLD KNOW THAT IT WAS 4AM IN THE MORNING! NEEDLESS TO SAY I WAS NOT A HAPPY CHAPPIE AS I WAS SO TIRED AND THUS IT WAS SOMEWHAT LATER THAN USUAL BEFORE I GOT UP ON THE SUNDAY.

DAY 5, SUNDAY ACTUALLY SAW ME WITH A SMILE ON MY FACE AS I SAW THE GUYS CREEPING OUT OF THEIR TENTS AND THEY DID NOT LOOK TOO HAPPY ABOUT HAVING TO GET UP EITHER. THEY WERE NOT TALKING SO LOUDLY NOW! LOL. IT WAS WITH RELIEF THAT I SAW FOUR OF THEM LEAVE RIGHT AWAY, AND THE OTHER TWO ONLY STUCK IT OUT UNTIL LUNCHTIME. AT LEAST I WAS GOING TO HAVE A PEACEFUL NIGHT AND THUS I COULD CATCH UP ON MY MUCH NEEDED SLEEP. I CONTENTED MYSELF WITH DOING SOME CLEANING OUT OF THE TENT FLOOR AS BY NOW I THINK I HAD TRACKED IN HALF THE BEACH. I LITERALLY HAD EVERYTHING OUT SO THAT I COULD SWEEP IT ALL DOWN. YES, I DO TAKE A SMALL DUSTPAN AND BRUSH WITH ME FOR THAT VERY PURPOSE AS I HATE A FILTHY TENT. I ALSO TOOK THE OPPORTUNITY TO LEAVE THE STUFF OUTSIDE FOR A BIT TO AIR IT. FORTUNATELY, THE WEATHER WAS KIND TO ME AND I WAS ABLE TO ENJOY A SUNNY MORNING JUST AMBLING ALONG THE SHORE AND FINALLY GETTING DOWN TO A SECOND GO THROUGH OF THE HYMNS. THIS IS WHERE I CAME UNSTUCK. I HAD EXPECTED THAT TEH SECOND GO THROUGH, WHICH WAS ABOUT ME FITTING TUNES TO HYMNS RATHER THAN TH OTHER WAY ROUND. WHAT I HAD BEEN DOING WAS LOOKING AT THE OFFICIAL ALTERNATIVES. FOR YOU WHO ATTEND CHURCH REGULARLY, YOU WILL KNOW THAT OFTEN A HYMN HAS A COUPLE OF DIFFERENT TUNES THAT ARE ALREADY LAID DOWN. WHAT IS OFTEN MISSED IS THE FACT THAT A HYMN CAN BE SUNG TO A WELL KNOW TUNE BUT IT IS NOT RECOGNISED AS AN OFFICIAL ALTERNATIVE. I WANTED TO RECTIFY THAT SOMEWHAT BUT THOUGHT THAT BECAUSE I HAD ALREADY GOT 3 FOOLSCAP PAGES FULL I WOULD NOT FIND TOO MANY. HOW WRONG WAS I? BY SUNDAY SUPPER TIME I HAD ADDED ANOTHER 2 FOOLSCAP PAGES AND HAD NOT FINISHED YET. HAD TO CALL IT A DAY THOUGH BECAUSE I HAD TO COOK SUPPER BEFORE THE LIGHT STARTED TO FADE.

BEING THE GOOD SCOUT THAT I AM, I THOUGHT I WOULD GET PREPARD FOR SUNDAY EVENINGA ND NIGHT BCAUSE I WAS NOT CONVINCED WE HAD SEENT HE LAST OF THE RAIN. WHAT I DID WAS TO REORGANISE THE TENT SO THAT NOTHING WAS TOUCHING THE WALLS ANDTHUS OWULD HOPEFULLY STAY DRY. WELL, I WAS RIGHT TO BE PREPARED AS TH RAIN DID COME AGAIN. IT WAS WHY IWAS FLABBERGASTED ONCE MORE TO SEE A CHAP APPEAR WITH TWO YOUNG GIRLS IN TOW, NITHER OF WHOM WERE ANYWHERE NEAR SCHOOL AGE. THE THING WAS THAT IT HAD STARTED TO RAIN BY THIS TIME AND YET HE CALMLY SAT DOWN AND LIT A SMALL FIRE AND HE AND THE GIRLS MERRILY TOASTED MARSHMALLOWS ON IT UNDER THE CANOPY OF ANOTHER GROUP OF TREES. WHO, IN THEIR RIGHT MIND, WOULD BRING TWO YOUNG GIRLS OUT ON A NIGHT SUCH AS THAT AND THINK NOTHING OF IT? THERE IS CERTAINLY NOTHING AS STRANGE AS PEOPLE, THAT IS DEFINITELY FOR SURE, AND SOME OF THEM WANT THEIR HEADS EXAMINED; ALSO A DEFINITE!

I DIGRESS,THOUGH. I SAT WITH TREPIDATION IN THE TENT EXPECTING THE WATER TO COMETHROUGHAT ANYTIME, AND EVN STARTEDTO SLEEP IN THE CHAIR FOR FEAR OF TURNING OVER IN BED AND TOUCHING THE TENT WALLS. FORRTUNATELY, THE RAIN DIES AWAYBY AROUND MIDNIGHT, SO I WAS ABLE TO GET INTO BED AND I SLEPT THE SLEEP OF THE JUST.

DAY 6, MONDAY SAW ME ACTUALLY GETTING UP WHAT FOR ME IS LATE. THE GOOD THING WAS THAT I WAS WARM AND I WAS DRY AND NOTHING INSIDE THE TENT SUFFERED EITHER. HOWEVER, BY THIS TIME WHAT LITTLE WATERPROOFING THERE WAS HAD REALLY BEEN WASHED AWAY. DURING THE MORNING I MANAGED TO ADD ANOTHER FOOLSCAP PAGE TO THE PROJECT BEFORE FINALLY FINISHING. I NOW HAVE 6 FOOLSCAP PAGES OF HYMNS WHICH NOW NEED TO BE COLLATED INTO THEIR VARIOUS SECTIONS AND TYPED OUT AND PRINTED IN BOOK FORM. THAT IS GOING TO TAKE A WHILE YET TO COMPLETE AND I WILL BE LUCKY IF I MANAGE IT BFORE CHRISTMAS AS I NOW HAVE A MYRIAD OF OTHER THINGS TO CONCENTRATE ON.

BY MONDAY LUNCHTIME I WAS BEGINNING TO GATHER HOPE THAT WE HAD SEEN THE LAST OF THE RAIN. UNFORTUNATELY, THIS WAS NOT TO BE. MONDAY AFTERNOON WAS A NIGHTMARE AS I HAD TO STRATEGICALLY PLACE POTS AND PANS AND BOWLS AS FINALLY THE WATER DID START TO PHYSICALLY DRIP THROUGH IN PLACES, MOST OF WHICH WERE OVER MY BED! LUCKILY I HAD ENOUGH THINGS TO BE ABLE TO KEEP MY BED DRY ALTHOUGH I WAS STARTING TO WORRY AT ONE STAGE. FORTUNATELY, MY EVER PRESENT FLASKS OF COFFEE WERE THERE TO KEEP ME GOING, LOL. MY LAST JOB BEFORE SUNDOWN WAS TO ENSURE I HAD HOT WATER TO DO ME IF I WOKE UP AND WANTED A HOT DRINK DURING THE NIGHT, OF WHICH I DID AVAIL MYSELF A FEW TIMES AS IT GETS REALLY COLD BY A LOCHSIDE. THE FIRST JOB OF THE MORNING, AFTER I HAD DRUNK MY FIRST CUP OF COFFEE AND TAKEN MY MEDS, WAS TO REPLENISH THE FLASKS. I MADE SURE THAT I HAD AT LEAST ONE FULL FLASK AT ALL TIMES.

ANYWAY, BACK TO THE SUBJECT. BY EARLY EVENING THE RAIN HAD FINALLY ABATED AND I GOT MY LAST VISIT BY THE RANGERS. THEY WERE JUST CHECKING TO SEE IF I WAS OK THIS TIME AS MY TENT HAD BEEN REPORTED TO THE VARIOUS SHIFTS SO THAT THEY KNEW I WAS THERE AND HOW LONG I WOULD BE STAYING FOR. ACTUALLY, I THINK THEY WERE GLAD TO GET OUT OF THEIR VEHICLE AND STOP BY FOR A NATTER AS WE WERE TALKING FOR A GOOD 45 MINUTES IN THE END. IT TURNED OUT THAT ONE OF THEM WAS FROM NEAR WHERE WE LIVE AND KNEW OUR AREA WELL. I MANAGED TO FIND OUT FROM HIM THAT THE WEATEHR WAS NOW SET FAIR SO I WAS HAPPY THAT I WOULD NOT HAVE TO BREAK CAMP IN THE RAIN AS WELL AS BEING ABLE TO SLEEP IN THE KNOWLEDGE THAT I WAS NOT GOING TO BE DROWNED OUT EITHER.

SO TO THE FINAL MORNING. THIS MORNING, WEDNESDAY. THE RANGERS WERE CORRECT. THE SUN WAS SHINING AND THE MORNING, ALTHOUGH A LITTLE BREEZY, WAS QUITE WARM, AND THE DAY WOULD ACTUALL GET WARMER STILL. KNOWING THAT MARY WOULD NOT BE UP VERY EARLY I DECIDED NOT TO GET OUT OF BED STRAIGHT AWAY MYSELF. IN THE END THOUGHT I HAD NO CHOICE. NATURE DOES NOT WAIT FOR ANY MAN, LOL. STILL, I TOOK MY TIME OVER EVERYTHING AS I HAD ALL BUT FINISHED MY READING BOOKS AND HAD LONG SINCE COMPLETED THE CROSSWORD BOOKS, SO APART FROM BREAKING CAMP I WAS GOING TO BE HANGING AROUND. IT TURND OUT TO BE JUST THE CASE AS I HAD A LEISURELY STROLL FOR THE LAST TIME ALONG THE SHORELINE AND THEN DECIDED TO ACTUALLY FINISH MY READING BOOK BEFORE DOING ANYTHING. JUST AS WELL AS I PHONED HOME AND ASCERTAINED THAT MARY AND TRISH WERE BUSY DOING A RUBBISH RUN BEFORE THEY WERE COMING TO COLLECT ME. AFTER FINANLLY BREAKING CAMP I WAS JUST POTTERING ABOUT BUT TIMED THINGS TO PERFECTION AS I WAS JUST MOVING THE STUFF TO THE PICK UP POINT WHEN I SAW THE CAR GONG PAST ON ITS WAY TO MARY TURNING IT AROUND AT THE DESIGNATED POINT. IT IS A SINGLE TRACK ROAD SO THERE ARE DESIGNATED PASSING PLACES AND JUST AT THE ONE POINT THERE IS A GATED ENTRANCE TO A PRIVATE ESTATE. I WILL POINT OUT THE MANOR HOUSE WHEN I COM TO THE RELEVANT PHOTOGRAPH, ALTHOUGH YOU WILL ONLY GLIMPSE IT IN THE DISTANCE. THE ONLY PEOPLE ALLOWED THROUGH THOSE GATES OTHER THAN THE PEOPLE WHO LIVE THERE ARE THE BOAT CLUB PEOPLE WHO RENT A BOATHOUSE FROM THE ESTATE, CYCLISTS AND WALKERS WHO HAVE RIGHT OF WAY ALONG A TRACK TO THE NEXT VILLAGE. DESPITE THIS, YOU WOULD BE AMAZED AT JUST HOW MANY VEHICLES USE THE ROAD. I CAN ONLY IMAGINE THAT THEY ARE THE PEOPLE WHO WORK BOTH ON AND FOR THE STATE. THERE IS A DIFFERENCE AS I WOULD IMAGINE THAT SOME WOULD WORK ON THE ESTATE BUT WOULD BE EMPLOYED BY EMPLOYERS SUCH AS THE FORESTRY COMMISSION AND, OF COURSE, THE FOREST RANGERS.

MARY AND TRISH ARRIVED AT JUST BEFORE NOON AND BY THEN I WAS FEELING PECKISH, SO WE DECIDED TO FINISH THE DAY BY GOING BACK HOME, OFFLOADING THE GEAR , COLLECTING MUM AND GOING OUT TO DINNER, A MEASURE THAT IN THE END PROVED BOTH POPULAR AND EXTREMELY DELICIOUS. EVEN MUM WAS COMPLIMENTARY, WHICH TELLS YOU A LOT!

OK, THAT IS THE BORING BIT FINALLY OVER WITH. NOW FOR THE INTERESTING BIT; THE PHOTOGRAPHS. YOU WILL SEE THAT I AM VIRTUALLY AT THE ONE END OF THE LOCH AND YOU WILL SEE THE TRUE END WHERE THE SLUICE GATES ARE, WHICH ALLOWS A MEASURE OF CONTROL AS TO HOW MUCH WATER IS LET OUT INTO THE RIVER. THIS IS SO IMPORTANT AS WITHOUT IT, THE RIVER WOULD ACTUALLY DRY UP TO A LARGE EXTENT WHEN THE LOCH DOES GET SO LOW. SO WE START BY LOOKING AT THE END OF THE LOCH WHICH IS TO THE RIGHT OF WHERE I WAS CAMPED.




THIS NEXT ONE IS WHAT I WOKE UP TO EVERY MORNING AS IT WAS RIGHT OPPOSITE ME.

NOW WE LOOK LEFT AND DOWN THE LOCH TO THE PLACE WHERE IT BENDS.
>





IF YOU LOOK TO THE VERY RIGHT OF THE LAST PHOTO YOU WILL JUST ABOUT MAKE OUT THE ESTATE MANOR HOUSE ABOUT HALF WAY UP THE SIDE OF THE HILL AND SEMINGLY SURROUNDED BY TREES.
IN THE NEXT COUPLE WE SEE THE BOAT CLUB ON THE WATER DOING A BIT OF LEARNER TRAINING.



FINALLY I WANTED TO SHOW YOU SOME OTHER SIDES OF THE LOCH. THE FIRST WAS TAKEN IN THE MORNING WHEN THE MISTS WERE JUST COMING OVER THE LOWER HORIZON PRIOR TO BEING BURN OFF BY THE SUN.

THEN THERE IS THE LOCH AT AROUND SUNSET.



THEN THERE IS THE LOCH IN THE MIDST OF SOME HEAT HAZE.



AND FINALLY, THERE IS THE ANGRY SIDE, OR AT LEAST THE BUILD UP. I WAS NOT GOING TO BE DAFT ENOUGH TO GO OUT IN THE RAIN AND TAKE PHOTOS, LOL.




NEXT YEAR I WILL BE UPGRADING MY QUIPMENT AS I HAVE, DESPITE THE RAIN AND THE 'FISHERMEN', ENJOYED MY CAMPING. IT HAS BEEN A LOVELY EXPERIENCE WHEN, AT THE PEACEFUL TIMES, YOU ARE BACK TO BEING ONE WITH NATURE. NOW THE EQUIPMENT HAS BEEN PUT AWAY FOR THE SEASON AND I WILL BE AVIDLY LOOKING FOR BARGAINS AS IT IS AT THIS TIME OF YEAR THAT THE CAMPING STUFF IS STARTING TO GET CHEAPER BECAUSE OBVIOUSLY, NOBODY WANTS TO GO CAMPING DURING THE WINTER TIME, SO GETTING RID OF SURPLUS STOCK IS THE THING BEFORE THE VENDORS JUST CONCENTRATE ON CARAVANS AND MOTOR HOMES WHICH SEEM TO SELL ALL YEAR ROUND. I ALSO WANT TO LOOK FOR PASTURES NEW AS THERE ARE PLENTY AVAILABL IN THIS BEAUTFUL SCOTTISH COUNTRYSIDE.

I HOPE YOU HAVE ENJOYED MY LITTLE JAUNT. YES, I DID NOT DO A LOT, BUT THEN IT WAS NEVER MY INTENTION TO DO SO. I GOT THE PEACE AND TRANQUILITY THAT I WANTED, AT LEAST FOR THE MOST PART, AND THE WEATHER REALLY JUST MADE IT INTO AN ADVENTURE. WHO SAYS WE HAVE TO GROW OLD GRACEFULLY, LOL. LIFE IS JUST TOO SHORT!

UNTIL THE NEXT TIME.....

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JOYCECAIN 9/21/2013 1:45PM

    LOVED the blog. You are so fortunate to be able to go to the neatest places. It is raining here, and I am at the library. Take care. Love Joyce

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-WISPY- 9/12/2013 10:08PM

    Hey there Mac, what an adventure from beginning to end. There was not a dull moment (even if a few wet ones) :). I enjoyed reading every bit of it and feel as if I have been with you. The photos are just lovely and remind me of home. You sure got the ground work done for the new hymnal - everyone loves a tune they know and different words to go with is a good idea. All that peace and quiet - which is more or less a daily thing for me - is so much needed to replenish our spirits. Guess that's why I like activities, action and lots of people around on my little holidays. Doing something different from the norm is what makes it such fun.

Thank you for sharing in both words and pictures.

Hugs Wispy.

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LHOHLER 9/12/2013 12:49PM

    What a great break for you, thanks for sharing it with us all via this blog! Too bad about the leaky tent! I Can't tell for sure in the photos if it is the kind with a rain fly? You made good progress on the hymns it it sounds like you were very cozy, barring the damp bedding!

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CONTENTCHRIS 9/12/2013 12:28PM

    I really enjoyed the pictures so much a picture is worth a thousand words.

Yet another nice trip in my opinion.

Life can be like a box of chocolates right?

Enjoy it or poof its gone!

emoticon emoticon

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ARTJAC 9/12/2013 6:07AM

    emoticon emoticon

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SHERRY666 9/11/2013 4:50PM

    OH MAC I LOVED IT......... WHAT A GREAT BLOG........ IT'S TOO BAD YOU GOT ALL THE RAIN... BUT IT DIDN'T SEEM TO BOTHER YOU MUCH....... I REMEMBER WAKING UP TO A WET TENT AND IT'S SO YUCKY...... YOU HAD THINGS READY FOR THIS KIND OF WEATHER WHICH WAS SUPPOSE TO KEEP YOU DRY BUT THINGS HAPPEN........ I CAN TELL BY READING THAT YOU TOTALLY ENJOYED YOUR TIME THERE AND I KNOW YOU CAN'T WAIT TO GET BACK.......... BY THE WAY I LOVE THE TENT...... THAT IS SO NEAT AND LOOKS SO COMFY.. IT LOOKED LIKE A LITTLE ROOM ALL SET UP...... WHY NOT BE COMFORTABLE NO MATTER WHERE YOU GO HEY......... THE LOCH IS A BEAUTIFUL PLACE TO CAMP....... THERE WILL ALWAYS BE PEOPLE THAT COME OUT JUST TO DRINK AROUND THE CAMP FIRE AND THAT IS AN ADVENTURE TOO.....I'M SO HAPPY YOU HAD A WONDERFUL TIME AND I HOPE IT'S HELPED TO RELEASE SOME STRESS FROM EVERY DAY LIVING....... THANKS FOR TAKING US ON YOUR TRIP WITH YOU......... YOU KNOW HOW TO WRITE REALLY WELL...

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DEE107 9/11/2013 12:32AM

    thank you for sharing Camping isnt for me hugs

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SDEHNKE 9/10/2013 5:46PM

    It's been so long since I went camping. You're making me want to go again. emoticon Some of our fondest memories were the rainy days playing cards under the canopy or the cool evenings around the campfire. emoticon
Thanks for taking me along on your trip.

Suellen


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MY LATEST 'HOLIDAY'!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

BACK HOME AGAIN AND BOY AM I THANKFUL.

OKAY, LET ME BREAK THIS DOWN. THE START OF THE HOLIDAY WAS REALLY GOOD AND I THOUGHT THAT MY FEARS WOULD BE UNFOUNDED. THE FLIGHT WAS EXCELLENT AND WE MET UP WITH MY AUNT AND UNCLE AS ARRANGED. I EVEN CONFOUNDED THEM AS MY COUSINAND HIS WIFE HAVE SOME DOGS, OF WHICH YOU WILL SEE PICTURES LATER, AND ONE OF THEM HAS A HABIT OF SNEAKING UP BEHIND MEN AND BITING THEIR LEGS. WELL, HE CERTAINLY HAD HIS CHANCE BUT WHAT HAPPENED? HE ENDED UP ACTUALLY ON MY LAP! THEY COULD NOT BELIEVE IT, BUT HEY, YOU KNOW WHAT I FEEL ABOUT DOGS AND I GUESS HE COULD SENSE THAT.

UNFORTUNATELY, THE HOLIDAY WENT DOWNHILL FROM THERE AND FROM BEING EMBARRASSED TO BE WITH MUM IN A RESTAURANT TO THE FACT THAT TRISH SEEMED TO THINK THAT SHE WAS THE BOSS, I HAVE TOLD THEM ALL THAT I WOULD GO ON HOLIDAY WITH MARY BUT NEVER AGAIN WITH EITHER OF THE THE OTHERS AND DEFINITELY NOT ALL TOGETHER.

DON'T GET ME WRONG; IT WAS NICE TO SEE FAMILY AND FRIENDS, ALTHOUGH UNFORTUNATELY, OUR TIMING COULD NOT HAVE BEEN WORSE AS WHEN WE WENT TO SOMERSET, OUR FRIEND HAD JUST RECEIVED THE NEWS THAT HER YOUNGER SISTER HAD SUFFERED AN ANNEURISM, AND THE DAY AFTERWARDS SHE WAS DEAD. THE GOOD THING WAS THAT WE MANAGED TO CHEER HER UP A BIT AND GOT HER OUT OF THE HOUSE, FOR WHICH SHE WAS GRATEFUL.

SEEING MY BROTHER WAS REALLY NICE, BUT IT WAS SO SHORT LIVED AS HE DID NOT WANT TO LEAVE HSI WIFE ON HER OWN FOR TOO LONG, SO WE ONLY GOT TO CHAT FOR A COUPLE OF HOURS OVER TWO DAYS.

SO, THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THE HOLIDAY FOR ME WERE THE FACT I MANAGED TO GET A DAY AT THE EDEN PROJECT AND TOOK A LOT OF PHOTOGRAPHS, SOME OF WHICH I WILL BE SHOWING YOU. I ALSO BOUGHT MYSELF SOME NEW COOKWARE AS I WAS ENTITLED TO DOUBLE DISCOUNT ON THAT WEEKEND, WHICH MEANT A SAVING OF 20%, AND, AS I SAID, CHATTING WITH MY FRIENDS AND RELATIVES. IN THE END I HAD TO IGNORE MUM AND BLANK HER COMPKLETELY WHEN WE WENT TO EAT AS SHE DID NOT REALLY GO FOR A LOT. I KNOW IT WAS HOT AND, AS YOU ARE PROBABLY AWARE, EVEN THE UK IS IN THE MIDST OF A MINI HEAT WAVE WITH TEMPS GOING ABOVE 30c IN SOME AREAS, SO MUM DID NOT FGEEL LIKE EATING, BUT EVEN TRISH GOT ON TO HER ABOUT IT IN THE END. SUCH A SHAME AS WE FOUND SOME REALLY GOOD EATING PLACES. I CALL THEM THAT BECAUSE WE EVEN FOUND AN AMERICAN STYLE DINER, AND BOY WAS THAT A MISTAKE. ON THE FINAL MORNING WE ORDERED WHAT WE THOUGHT WAS A LIGHT BREAKFAST. I ORDERED A ROLL WITH SAUSAGE, BACON AND EGG. I WAS THINKING OF A NORMAL BREADROLL, WHICH IS NOT THAT BIG AND DOES NOT CONTAIN SO MUCH OF A FILLING. WHEN THIS 'THING' APPEARED IN FRONT OF ME I COULD NOT BELIEVE WHAT I WAS SEEING, AND THERE WAS NO WAY I WAS EVEN GOING TO ATTEMPT TO FINISH IT. THE ROLL ITSELF WAS FOUR TIMES THE SIZE OF A NORMAL ROLL AND CONTAINED 4 SAUSAGES, 4 RASHERS OF BACON AND 2 EGGS! ABSOLUTELY RIDICULOUS. I HAVE NEVER SEEN ANYTHING LIKE IT EXCEPT ON THE US TV SHOW MAN VERSUS FOOD. NEEDLESS TO SAY MOST OF IT GOT RETURNED TO THE KITCHEN, ALTHOUGH THEY DID OFFER TO WRAP IT UP FOR ME TO TAKE HOME. LIKE THE TV SHOW, THIS DINER HAD A CHALLENGE DISH AND WE ASKED IF IT EVER GOT ORDERED. WE WERE TOLD BY THE OWNER THAT IT GOT ORDERED AT LEAST 4 OR 5 TIMES A WEEK BUT THAT SHE HAD ONLY SEEN IT FINISHED ONCE. SEEING WHAT WAS ON IT I AM NOT SURPRISED - 6 SAUSAGES, 6 RASHERS OF BACON, 6 HASH BROWNS, BAKED BEANS, 4 SLICES OF FRIED BREAD WITH 4 FRIED EGGS, MUSHROOMS, TINNED TOMATOES, SIX PIECES OF BLACK PUDDING, FRIED POTATOES AND 4 SLICES OF TOAST AND BUTTER. I ASK, WOULD YOU EVEN ATTEMPT THIS? WHY WOULD ANYONE WANT TO? DEFINITELY A HEART ATTACK ON A PLATE, BUT THE DINER ITSELF WAS BUSY AS THE LOCAL POLICESUED IT FOR THEIR COFFEE BREAKS AND BREAKFASTS, (THERE WERE 3 CARS IN WHEN WE FIRST TRIED IT).

ANYWAY, ON TO THE PHOTOS. I AM GOING TO SPLIT THEM AS THERE ARE QUITE A FEW TO SHOW YOU.

THE FIRST SET OF PHOTOS IS OF MY COUSIN'S PETS. THERE ARE THE FOUR DONKEYS AND FOUR DOGS, ALTHOUGH YOU WILL SEE FIVE DOGS AS MY AUNT AND UNCLE ALSO HAVE ONE. THE ONE WHO BITES LEGS IS THE DARK HAIRED DOG IN THE FIRST PHOTO AND THE ONE OF THE DOG ON ITS OWN IS MY AUNT AND UNCLE'S DOG, AND WHO IS ALSO THE ALPHA MALE OF THE PACK.

THE NEXT LOT ARE OF THE EDEN PROJECT, OR MORE PRECISELY, THE BITS I WAS ABLE TO SEE. THERE ARE 5 BIOMES ALTOGETHER AND BECAUSE OF TIME CONSTRAINTS WE ONLY GOT TO GO INTO TWO OF THEM AND EVEN THEN ONLY HALF WAY AROUND THE SECOND. THE PLACE IS BUILT IN AN OLD QUARRY WHICH IS REALLY STEEP TO GET DOWN. THE GOOD THING IS THAT THERE IS TRANSPORT TO BRING YOU BACK TO THE TOP AND TAKE YOU TO THE CAR. I AM NOT EVEN GOING TO ATTEMPT TO REMEMBER THE TREES AND PLANTS AS THERE WERE SO MANY. ALL I WILL SAY IS THAT THE MAJORITY WERE TAKEN IN THE FIRST BIOME WHILST IN THE SECOND I SUSPECT THERE WILL BE SOME PLANTS AND TREES THAT YOU WILL RECOGNISE. TO START, THOUGH, I AM GOING TO GO OUT OF SEQUENCE AND SHOW YOU A PHOTO OF A PLANT BED.
IT IS BEFITTING THAT THIS IS OUTSIDE THE CAFE AS EVERY ONE OFTHE PLANTS YOU SEE YOU CAN EAT. UNFORTUNATLEY, I COULD NOT GET A DECENT ENOUGH PICTURE EXPLAINING IT ALL BUT IT WAS FASCINATING TO SEE SOME OF THE COMMON GARDEN PLANTS THAT WE WOULD NEVER DREAM OF USING AS A FOOD SOURCE, AND YET HERE THER WERE ACTUALLY BEING GROWN AND USED IN THE CAFE. I HAD A LOVELY SALAD WHICH CONTAINED MARIGOLD FLOWERS, FOR EXAMPLE. THERE WERE A LOT MORE AS WELL BUT I SIMPLY COULD NOT GET THEM ALL INTO THE ONE SET OF PICTURES AS THEY WENT ON FOR A LONG WAY. THIS IS BESIDES THE FRUITS, VEGETABLES AND COMMON HERBS THAT WERE GROWN. REMEMBER THAT THIS PLACE STARTED OFF AS A RESEARCH PLATFORM INTO BIOSPHERE TECHNOLOGY SO FOR THE MOST PART IS STILL SELF SUSTAINABLE.

SO,TO THE OUTSIDE.
AS YOU WILL NOTE, THIS SERIES IS TAKEN FROM RIGHT TO LEFT AND ALL THE BIOMES ARE INTER-CONNECTED. I FINIFH THIS SET WITH AN UNUSUAL SCULPTURE OF WHAT I CAN ONLY GUESS IS A HORNET. SEE WHAT YOU THINK.
NOW TO THE INSIDE, THE FIRST BIOME OF WHICH SHOWS THE RAIN FOREST FROM VARIOUS PARTS OF THE WORLD. THIS AREA DOES PRODUCE ITS OWN RAINFALL AND THE WATER IS COLLECTED AND RECYCLED. IT ALSO PRODUCES ITS OWN HEAT AS WELL SO ON A DULL DAY THERE ARE ACTUAL CLOUDS IN THE ROOF. THE TEMPERATURE WAS SO HOT THAT THERE IS A ROOFTOP VIEWING PLATFORM WHICH HAD TO BE CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC AS THE METAL WAS TOO HOT TO TOUCH. THE STRANGE THIG IS THAT SOME BRITISH BIRDS HAVE MADE THEIR HOMES IN THE LOWER WOODLANDS AND THERE ARE TROPICAL BUTTERFLIES NOW BEING INTRODUCED. IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BIOME THERE IS A HATCHERY AND 18 DIFFERENT BUTTERFLY SPECIES HAVE BEEN PLACED THERE IN PUPAE STAGE SO THAT THEY WILL HATCH NATURALLY INTO THE ENVIRONMENT FROM WHICH THEY CAME FROM. I COULD NOT CAPTURE ALL OF THE PLACE AND THERE IS AN EXAMPLE OF A STORM SHELTER WHICH WOULD BE USED BY THE NATIVES OF THE FOREST AND EVEN AS A TSUNAMI RELIEF HUT. IT WAS IN AMONGST THE TREES AND BRANCHES AND THE PICTURE THAT I TOOK WAS SO DARK YOU COULD NOT SEE WHAT IT WAS. WHAT I WILL SAY IS THAT IT IS TINY, LOW ROOFED, AND HOW A FAMILY COULD LIVE IN ONE IS BEYOND ME. ALSO, THERE IS NOT AN EXAMPLEOF THE TREE ITSELF, BUT I DID GET TO SAMPLE OF A BAOBAB SMOOTHIE, THE SUGAR OF WHICH COMES FROM THE BAOBAB TREE. THIS TREE IS SO BIG THAT WHEN IT DIES, THE CENTRE IS HOLLOWED OUT AND THE TREE IS USED AS A HOUSE. THERE IS ONE THAT IS USED AS A BAR AND THE LARGERST ONE IS USED AS A RAIN SHELTER FOR UP TO FORTY PEOPLE! I HAVE TO SAY THAT THE SMOOTHIE WAS DELICIOUS AND THE BAOBAB SUGAR WAS COMBINED WITH PINAPPLE JUICE AND COCONUT MILK TO MAKE THE DRINK. ANYHOW, ON TO THE PHOTOS.
I INTERRUPT HERE TO MENTION THAT THIS LAST PHOTO SHOWS THE SIZE OF AN AREA WHICH IS BEING DENUDED EVERY HOUR FROM THE FORESTS. IT REALLY MAKES YOU THINK WHEN YOU SEE IT UP CLOSE.


WE NOW MOVE INTO THE MORE TEMPERATE CLIMATE.
THE LADY STANDING IN FRONT OF THIS PLANT IS MY COUSIN'S WIFE.
YOU CANNOT SEE THEM UNFORTUNATELY, BUT AT THE END OF THIS ROW IS A BED OF CHILLI PEPPEERS. THESE RANGE IN HEAT FROM 100,000 TO 500,000, (WHICH ARE YOUR HABANEROS). THERE IS ONE THAT STANDS ALONE THOUGH. IT WAS RAISED IN, OF ALL PLACES, DORSET, UK, AND IS THE HOTTEST PEPPER IN THE WORLD COMING IN AT A WHOPPING 1.6MILLION ON THE HEAT SCALE. I HAVE NOT A CLUE HOW YOU WOULD USE THIS ONE!
THIS 'HUT' IS THE EQUIVALENT OF A PORTABLE SHELTER. GO FIGURE! THIS STATUE REPRESENTS A GREEK GOD CALLED DIONYSUS, WHO WAS THE GOD OF RESURRECTION SO FEATURED IN A LOT OF GREEK GARDENS.

I THINK I MAYBE SHOULD HAVE ENTITLED THIS BLOG, 'THE EDEN PROJECT WITH A BIT OF HOLIDAY TAGGED ON', LOL. ACTUALLY I TOOK A LOT MORE BUT HAVE LIMITED WHAT I AM SHOWING TO HOPEFULLY GIVE YOU A TASTER. IF THIS IS ONLY ONE AND A HALF BIOMES, JUST THINK OF WHAT I MISSED OUT ON. I WOULD DEARLY LOVE TO GO BACK AND SEE.

ALL OF THE ABOVE PHOTOS WERE TAKEN ON THE SECOND DAY OF THE HOLIDAY. SUCH WAS THE NATURE OF THE REST OF IT THAT I ONLY MANAGED TO TAKE ONE MORE PICTURE AND THAT WAS ON THE DAY BEFORE WE WERE DUE TO FLY HOME. IT IS OF TRISH WITH MY BROTHER, ALAN, WHO IS 2 YEARS YOUNGER THAN I AM.


I DO HOPE YOU HAVE ENJOYED THE TREK THROUGH THE JUNGLE AND THAT YOU MAY HAVE RECOGNISED SOME OF THE PLANTS FROM THE SECOND SET OF PICTURES. IT IS A FASCINATING PLACE AND THERE IS A WAY TO GET A YEAR TICKET AT THE SAME PRICE OF THE STANDARD DAY TICKET, SO THOSE WHO LIVE CLOSE BY ARE EXCEEDINGLY FORTUNATE.

UNTIL THE NEXT TIME.....

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SDEHNKE 9/1/2013 9:28AM

    Fascinating. emoticon

Suellen


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JOYCECAIN 7/25/2013 2:38PM

    Loved this. I can't imagine how you would use that one pepper. Love Joyce

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CAROLIAN 7/21/2013 1:38AM

    I always fancied visiting there but have never got around to doing it Have a good summer emoticon

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CEREBELLUM 7/19/2013 4:13PM

    GREAT PHOTOS! EDIBLE PLANTS HOW INTERESTING!

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ARTJAC 7/19/2013 6:19AM

    emoticon GREAT PICS WELCOME BACK

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DEE107 7/19/2013 12:09AM

    love your pictures and thanks for sharing

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-WISPY- 7/18/2013 10:07PM

    WOO HOO MAC, FIRST OF ALL ITS GREAT TO HAVE YOU HOME AGAIN AND THE PHOTOS AS JUST BEAUTIFUL - WHAT A CREDIT TO YOU TO HAVE TAKEN THEM ALL.

THE PROJECT IS JUST FANTASTIC AND LOVING ALL THOSE EDIBLE PLANTS THAT IS RIGHTUP MY ALLEY AS I USED TO GROW ASSORTED ONES FOR USE HERE. I LOVE FOOD TO LOOK PRETTY AND DECORATIVE AND REALLY ENJOYED USING THE PETALS. I STILL DO HAVE SOME GROWING.

DELIGHTED YOU GOT TO SEE FAMILY, IF ONLY FOR A SHORT WHILE.

I WOULD SURE LOVE TO STROLL THROUGH THE EDEN PROJECT MYSELF.

HUGS WISPY

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ANJAYS-JOURNEY 7/18/2013 6:43PM

    awesome the Eden project is fascinating

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SHERRY666 7/18/2013 6:00PM

    OH WOW IS ALL I CAN SAY......... THE EDEN PROJECT IS HUGE AND GORGEOUS.......... I WOULD LOVE TO JUST WALK AROUND THERE AND TAKE IN ALL OF THE PLANTS FLOWERS AND TREES...... IT'S SO BEAUTIFUL..... THANKS FOR SHARING SOME OF YOUR TRIP WITH US MAC....... IF ANYTHING THE EDEN PROJECT WAS WORTH THE WHOLE TRIP..... MAGNIFICENT.... I WOULD ALSO LIKE TO MENTION...... WELCOME HOME YOU WERE MISSED ON OUR CHAT....... IT'S GREAT TO HAVE YOU BACK MAC.

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GOLDDUSTTWIN 7/18/2013 2:46PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon So glad ;you were able to get to the Eden Project AND GLAD YOU ARE HOME AGAIN! YOU WERE MISSED!

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LINDA! 7/18/2013 2:00PM

    I really enjoyed the photos and the blog.

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STITCH4EVER 7/18/2013 11:52AM

    THE PICTURES ARE INCREDIBLE. I'M REALLY GLAD YOU GOT TO MAKE THE TRIP.

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CONTENTCHRIS 7/18/2013 11:33AM

    I enjoyed the photos but I can tell that the real

thing had to be more enjoyable.

Sorry to hear of your family loss and good

of you all to consul the ones in need as well

as being able to see you brother for a bit.

Nice pics my friend as always! emoticon

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LOCH VENACHAR

Friday, June 21, 2013

WELL THIS WAS IT. MY FIRST 'CAMPING' TRIP ON MY OWN FOR QUITE A NUMBER OF YEARS AND BOY WAS I LOOKING FORWARD TO IT.

BEFORE I START, AND FYI, THE LOCH NAME IS PRONOUNCED VENAKAR; THE SCOTTISH 'CH' BEING PRONOUNCED TOGETHER.

THE DAY WAS SET FAIR, ALTHOUGH WE HADA COUPLE OF THINGS TO DO ON THE WAY, NOT THE LEAST OF WHCIH WAS VISIT THE FISHING SHOP TO GET MY PERMITS AND SOME BAIT. I DON'T KNOW ABOUT THE SYSTERM INT HE US OR CANADA BUT IT IS VERY STRICT INT HE UK. YOU CAN BE HEAVILY FINED AND YOUR GEAR TAKEN OFF OYU SHOULD YOU NOT HAVE OR REFUSE TO BUY A FISHING PERMIT. ALSO, AS YOU WILL SEE LATER, THERE IS ONLY ONE ROD INT HE WATER. AGAIN, THIS IS A CONDITION PLACED UPON FISHERMEN WHO VISIT THE LOCH. IT IS FOR THE PROTECTION OF THE FISH REALLY AS THE FISHERY HAS TO MANAGE THE FISH AND RESTOCK FROM THEIR RESOURCE CENTRE AS NECESSARY SO THAT THERE ARE FISH AVAILABLE FOR THE START OF EVERY SEASON. THIS ONLY APPLIES TO TROUT AS THERE ARE ALSOP SOME OTHER SPECIES THAT LIVE AND BREED IN THE LOCH AS WELL. TYPICAL COARSE FISHAND TH DREADED PIKE, A REAL PREDATOR. FUNNILY ENOUGH, IT DOESN'T COST YOU ANYTHING FOR COARSEFISHINGEXCEPTTHAT YOU CANNOT TAKE ANY FISH HOMEBUT YOU HAVE TO CATCH AND RELEASE. PIKE, ON THE OTHER HAND, IS ACTUALLY MORE EXPENSIVE TO FISH FOR THAN TROUT AND THERE IS A BAG LIMIT ON HOW MANY YOU CAN TAKE OUT OF THE LOCH. AGAIN, IT ISFOR THESAKE OF MAINTAINUNGTHIS SPECIES SO THAT PEOPLE WHO GO AFTER THIS SORT OF FISH CAN HAVE THEIR SPORT.

ANYHOW, I DIGRESS. WE GOT TO THE TACKLE SHOP AND UNFORTUNATELY, THE OWNER WAS NOT THERE AND HAD ALADYTO OPEN UP FOR HIM. SHE HAD NOT A CLUE AND EVENTUALLY SHE RANG THE OWNERTOG ETHIM TO COME IN. THE DELAY WAS BECAUSE I WANTED A TIMED PERMIT AS I WAS NOT GOINGTO GET TO THE LOCH BEFORE THE AFTERNOON.

THE LOCH ITSELF IS NOT THAT FAR FROM LOCH KATRINE, AND I HAVE SHOWN YOU THAT ON A PREVIOUS BLOG. ALL AROUND THAT AREA THERE IS A SERIES OF LOCHS, BUT UNFORTUNATELY, MOST OF THE ARE FLY FISHING ONLY, ALTHOUGH THEY WOULD MAKE IDEAL CAMPING RESTS. I HAVE NEVER LEARNT TO FLY FISH, SO UNTIL I DO THESE ARE OUT.

WE GOT TO THE LOCH IN GLORIOUS SUNSHINE AND MARY AND TRISH HELPED ME UNLOAD AND GET MY STUFF ONTO THE SHORELINE. ON THE WAY IN WE HAD CALLED AT THE FISHERY AND I HAD SHOWN MY PERMITS AND ASKED WHERE I COULD CAMP. I DULY TOOK THE ADVICE GIVEN AND SUBSEQUENTLY REGRETTED IT, ALTHOUGH IT WAS NOT THE FAULT OF THE LAD INT HE FISHERY SHOP BUT MARY WAS REFUSING TO GO TO THEOTHER SIDE FOR ME.

WELL, IT TOOK ME OVER AN HOUR JUST TO GET THE TENT ERECTED BECAUSE I HAD TO SPEND A LARGE PROPORTION OF THE TIME DIGGING STONES AND PEBBLES OUT OF THE GROUND SO THAT I COULD GET MY TENT PEGS IN. I AM GOING TO HAVE TO BUY SOME NEW PEGS AS I MANAGED TO BENDA FEW IN THE PROCESS OF ANCHORING THE TENT. I WAS REALLYSWEATY BY THE TIME I HAD FINISHED, I CAN TELL YOU, SO I WAS NOT EXACTLY BOTHEREDABOUT PUTTING EVERYTHING INSIDE NEATLY. I DID THAT LATER ON AFTER I AHD EATEN SOME FOOD AND COOLED DOWN.

AFTER LUNCH I DECIDED THAT BEFORE I GOTMY LINE WET I OWULD SORT THE TENT OUT PROPERLY, AND THAT INCLUDED INFLATING THE MATTRESS AND PILLOWS. NOT HAVING THE LUXURY OF AN ELECTRIC PUMP IT WAS TO PROVE A REAL WORKOUT IN ITS OWN RIGHT. ELECTRIC PUMPS REQUITE YOU TO HAVE THE USE OF A CAR BATTERY ORTO HAVE THE CAR ON SITE ANDUSE THE ON BOARD CIGARETTE LIGHTEER, (WHICH WOULD HAVE BEEN NO GOOD IN OUOR CASE BECAUSE OUR CAR DOES NOT HAVE ONE). THE PILLOWS WERE THE EASY BIT BUT THE MATTRESS WAS ANOTHER SWEATY EXERCISE. IF EVER YOU WANT TO WORK OUT WITHOUT MOVING FROM YOUR CHAIRTHEN THIS IS SURELY AN IDEAL WAY OF DOING IT!!! BECAUSE THE WEATEHR WAS SO GOOD I WAS NOT GOING TO TRY THIS INSIDE THE RTENT AS THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN SO HOT, SO I DID IT OUTSIDE. NOT SURE IF IT WAS THE LESSER OF TWO EVILS, LOL.

EVENTUALLY, EVERYTHING WAS SORTED OUT AND I WAS ABLE TO RELAX. I COULD FINALLY GET MY RODS SORTED OUT. I WAS INTENDING TO SUE TWO RODS, ALTHOUGH NOT AT THE SAME TIME. THE ONE YOU SEE IN THE PICTURE IS THE LONGER OF THE RODS AND I USE THIS FOR LONG CASTING. I HAVE A COUPLE OF SHORTER ONES WHICH WILL CAST OUT TO AROUND 20 FEET OR SO AND ARE IDEAL FOR CLOSE SHORE FISHING. AS IT TURNED OUT, I WAS ONLY ABLE TO USE A WEIGHT AND NOT A FLOAT. I HAD INTENDED TO TRY BOTH AT SOME STAGE, BUT SUBSEQUENTLY, THE WATERS BECAMETOO CHOPPY FOR FLOAT FISHING.

AS THE AFTERNOON WORE ON I DISCOVERED THAT THE PLACE I HAD CAMPED WAS QUIT A POPULAR STOPPING OFF POINT FOR PEOPLE TO COME DOWN AND JUST RELAX. SOME WOULD JUST SIT ON THE BENCHES WHILST OTHERS WOULD WALK THE SHORE ANDBEYONE, (THERE IS A HIKING TRAIL ALL AROUND THE LOCH WHICH WOLD PROBABLY TAKE YOU ALL DAY TO DO). THE OPNE THING I WAS PLEASED ABOUT WAS THAT APART FROM THE OCCASIONALY HELLO I WAS BEING LEFT TO MY OWN DEVICES. AT AROUND TEA TIME THINGS STARTED TO QUIETEN DOWN A BIT AND I ONLY HAD THE OCCASIONAL VISITOR. PEACE AT LAST.

I WILL GLOSS OVER THE REST OF THE DAY AS THERE IS NOTHING REALLY TO TELL YOU ABOUT. I SIMPLY CHILLED OUT AND GOT LOST IN MY OWN LITTLE WORLD.

THE FOLLOWING MORNING I WAS UP WITHT HE SUN, OR AT LEAST EARLY ANHOW; LIKE4AM EARLY. I DECIDED THAT THIS WAS A LITTLE TOO EARLY TO BE GETTING UPAND BESISDES, I WAS REALLY COMFORTABLE. THE PREVIOUS EVENING I HAD FILLED A FLASK WITH SOME BOILING WATER SO ALL I HAD TO DO WAS REACH ACROSS AND MAKE MYSELF A CUP OF COFFEE WITHOUT HAVING TO GET OUT OF BED.WISH I COULD DO THIS ALL OF THE TIME, LOL. ACTUALLY, I WAS GLAD OF THE SUN BECAUSE THE TEMPERATURE DROPPED DRAMATICALLY DURING THE NIGHT, AS I DISCOVEREDWHEN HAVING TO GET UP TO GO FOR A WALK. I WAS SHIVERING BY THE TIME I GOT BACK TOT HE TENT AND PUT MY COOKER ON LOW JUST TO HEAT THETENT UP A BITSO THAT I COULD FALL BACK ASLEEP PROPERLY.

ANYHOW, EVENTUALLY I HAD HAD ENOUGH SO I GOT UP AND GOT MY BREAKFAST. I HAVE HAD TO GET INTO THE HABIT OF EATING BREAKFAST STRAIGHT AWAY BECAUSE THE MEDS I AM ON AHVETO BE TAKEN WITH OR JUST AFTER EATING FOOD. I HAVE TRIED TAKING THEM WITHOUT AND IT CREATES A HORRIBLE NAUSEA WHICH DOES NOT GO AWAY QUICK ENOUGH FOR MY LIKING.

FIRST JOB WAS TO GET EVERYTHING SORTED OUT. WASH MY PLATE, TIDY THE AREA AND PUT THE TRASH INTO THE BAG AND MAKE SURE THE COOLBAG WAS DOING ITS JOB. I ALSO SPENT A LITTLE TIME REJIGING THE INSIDE OFTHE TENT SO THAT I HAD MORE ROOM. THIS WAS TO PROVE FORTUITOUSAS YOU WILL HEAR.

AFTER THAT IT WAS TO BOIL SOME MORE WATER FOR THE FLASKS AS IT SAVES TIME MAKING DRINKS IN THE LONG RUN AND I DO NOT AHVE THE TROUBLE OF FIRING UP THE COOKER EVERY TIME I WANT A DRINK. I AM NOT MUCH FOR COLD DRINKS, PREFERRING MY CUP OF DECAF COFFEE OR TEA. THEN IT WAS GET THE TACKLE I WANTED TO SUESORTED OUTAND ONCE AGAIN GET THE LINE WET.

DURING THE DAY I DISCOVERED THAT THIS WAS NOT THE CAMPING SITE I HAD ENVISAGED. I WANTED TO GET AWAY FROM EVERYTHING BUT ONCE AGAIN THE PLACE WAS LIKE A TOURIST TRAP. IGOT A MORNING VISIT FORM THE LAD FROM THE FISHERY AND HE INTRODUCED ME TO HIS DOG. HE DOES THE MORNING VISITS AND BRINGS THEDOG AS IT LOVES GOING IN THE BOAT, WHICH IS THE WAY THE ALDGETSAROUND THE WHOLE LOCH. THE AFTERNOON VISIT WAS DONE BY THE LAD'S FATHER, WHO WASTHE SENIOR GHILLY, (THE PERSON WHO MAINTAINS THE RULES OF THE LOCH AMONGST OTHER DUTIES). HE ASKED ME HOW I WAS GETTING ON AND, TO BE HONEST, IT WAS NOT GOING VERY WELL. HE SAID THAT HE WAS SURE HE HAD A SWIM FEEDER IN HIS TACKLE WHCIH HE DID NOT SUE ANY MORESO I COLD TRY THAT. HE WENT AWAY AND AN HOUR LATER HE WAS TRUE TO HIS WORD AND CAMEBACK WITH THE PIECE OF KIT; EXPLAINED HOW TO USE IT AND HOW TO TACKLE UP, AND THEN SAID THAT I COULD JUST HANG ON TO ITAS IT WAS ONLY GATHERING DUST IN HIS TACKLE. ANOTHER BIT OF KIT GAINED AND FOR NOTHING. FRIENDLY PEOPLE US FISHERMEN, LOL.

THE REST OF THE DAY PASSED BY TOO QUICKLYALTHOUGH I DID GET A VISIT FROM AN ELDERLY CHAP WHO ACTUALLY BELIED HIS AGE. APPARENTLY HE WAS BORN IN ENGLAND BUT HAD EMIGRATED TO AUSTRALIAWHEN HE WAS YOUNGER AND ITHOUGHT HEWASAN AUSSIETHROUGH AND THROUGH. HE WAS OBVIOUSLY COMFORTABLY OFF AS HE WAS TELLING ME THATEVERY AUSSIE WINTER, HE SETS FORTH ON HIS TRAVELS TO WARMER CLIMES, SUCH AS THE UK AND OTHER PARTS OF EUROPE, AND THEN GOES HOME IN TIME FOR THE AUSSIE SUMMER. HE RETIRED AT 55 AND HAS BEEN DOING THIS EVER SINCE. HE IS 70 NOW SO OBVIOUSLY DID WELL FOR HIMSELF AS I COULD NEVER AFFORD TO DO WHAT HE WAS DOING. THE ONLY OTHER VISITORS I HAVE TO MENTION WERE FROM THE USA, AND I MENTION THEM FOR THE WRONG REASONS. I'M AFRAID THEY DID NOT PRTRAY TEH USA IN A VERY GOOD LIGHT. THE DAD AND SON DECIDED TO PLAY AT SKIPPING STONES ACROSS THE WATER. THATW AS FINE UNTIL THE LAD WENT OFF BY HIMSELF AND STARTED TO THROW ROCKS INTO THE LOCH. ANY CHANCE OF FISH INSHORE WAS LONG GONE. NOT JUST THAT BUT HE DID NOT RESPECT MY SPACE AND HIS MUM HAD TO SHOUT HIM AWAY FROM THE FISHING ROD. UNFORTUNATELY, AMERICANS HAVE A REPUTATION FOR BEING BOLD, BRASH AND BRAZEN AND ALSO VERY LOUD. I'M AFRAID THIS FAMILY ONLY CEMENTED THAT PERCEPTION ON THE OTHER PEOPLEWHO WERE JUST THERE TO CHILL OUT. I KNOW THIS NOT TO BE THE CASE OVERALL HAVING WORKED WITH AND MADE FRIENDS WITH QUITE A FEW PEO-PLE FROM THE USA IN THE PAST, BUT SOMEONE WHO HAD NOT GOT MY EXPERIENCE WAS GOING TO THINK DIFFERENTLY. SUCH A SHAME. I AM AFRAID TO SAY THAT I WAS SO PLEASED WHEN THEY LEFT THE AREA AND I WAS NOT THE ONLY ONE! BECAUSE OF THE FACT THAT STONES AND STUFF HAD BEEN THROWN INTO THE LOCH THERE WAS NOT MUCH CHANCE OF ANYTHING COMING ANYWHERE NEAR THE AREA SO I REELED IN AND LEFT IT FOR A WHILE BEFORE RECASTING.

THE EVENING WENT PRETTY MUCH THE SAME AS THE PREVIOUS ONE. I HAD BROUGHT A BOOK TO READ AND ALSO A CROSSWORD PUZZLE BOOK TOCOMPLETE. I DID THE PUZZLEBOOK DURING THE DAY AND READ THE BOOK AT NIGHT. I AM NOW UP TO DATE WITH EVERYTHING DAN BROWN HAS EVER WRITTEN, LOL. THE ONE DIFFERENCE WEDNESDAY EVENING WAS THAT ANOTHER COUPLE OF BLOKES PITCHED A TENT JUST DOWN FROM ME AND THEY WERE REALLY NICE. IN FACT ONE OF THEM NOTICED THAT I DID NOT HAVE A CAR PARKEDAND CAME ACROSS TO MAKE SURE I WAS OK AND THAT I HAD ENOUGH WATER ETC. HE OFFERED TO GO TO THE CAFE IF NEEDS BE TO REPLENISH ME, BUT I WAS ABLE TO TELL HIM THANKS BUT IWAS ALRIGHT. WE CHATTED FOR A WHILE AND I TOLD HIM THAT, APART FROM TIDDLERS, THERE WAS NOTHING DOING TROUT WISE, EVEN ON THE BOATS. I DID MENTION THAT PIKE WERE BEING CAUGHT AND H SAID HE WOULD TRY THAT AS HE HAD HIS PIKE TACKLE WITH HIM. WE WISHED EACH OTHER TIGHT LINES AND THEN I WAS LEFT ALONE. AS I SAID, THE FISHING COMMUNITY IOS JUST SO FRIENDLY AND WILL HELP ANYONE WITHOUT THINKING. SUCH A NICE GROUP OF PEOPLE TO BE WITH, AT LEAST FOR THE MOST PART.

THURSDAY MORNING WAS NOT GOOD. THE ONE PIECE OF EQUIPMENT I HAVE YET TO BUY IS A FISHING UMBRELLA, AND SO I ONLY HADA SMALL COLLAPSIBLE ONE. YOU'VE GUESSED IT, WE HAD RAIN. THER WAS NO WAY I WAS GOING TO GET WET AND SINCE I WOULD NOT HAVE A FULL DAY ANYWAY, I DECIDED NOT TO BOTHER WITH THE FISHING. I HAD NOT HAD MUCH JOY ANYHOW AND APART FOR A COUPLE OF SMALL ONES WHICH I AHD TO PUT BACK IT WAS A BUST, (NOT THAT IW AS CARING, OF COURSE).

THIS IS WHERE THE EXTRA ROOM I HAD CREATED CAME IN HANDY. I PULLED THE CHAIR INSIDE AND COULD SIT AND GET STUFF OUT AWAYWHILST I RODE OUT THE WEATHER. I HAD SOME COLD MEAT ROLLS FOR BREAKFAST, MEAT WHICH I HAD COOKED ON A DISPOPSABLE BBQ THE NIGHT BEFORE AFTER I HAD USED IT TO COOK MY SUPPER. (I MAY BE 'ROUGHING' IT BUT I SO NOT SKIMP ON FEEDING MYSELF, LOL)

FORTUNATELY, THE RAIN ABATED IN TIME FOR THE TENT TO DRY OUT BEFORE PACKING. THE SUN CAME OUT AGAIN AND ALL WAS WELL. I PHONED MARY TO SEE IF SHE WOULD COLLECT ME EARLY AND THIS SHE DID. I SUGGESTED GOING TO THE CAFE FOR LUNCH, BUT THAT WAS A NON STARTER AS MOSTLY THE MENU COMPRISED FISH WHICH IS A FOOD THAT TRISH WILL NOT EAT. INSTEAD WE DROVEAFEW MILES AND WENT TO A HARVESTERAND I TOLD OY ABOUT THAT IN MY POST YESTERDAY.
ALL IN ALL IT WAS A LOVELY TIME. OKAY, THE FISH WEEREN'T BITING AND THEREWERE TOO MANY VISITORS, BUT I DIDMEET SOME LOVELY PEOPLE ASA RESULT AND WILL BE GOING BACK AT SOME STAGE, ALBEIT ONTHE OTHER SIDE OF THE LOCH WHICH IS APPARENTLY A LOT QUIETER AND HAS GROUND THAT DOESN'T BEND TENT PEGS.

WHER ARE THE PHOTOS? (I HEAR YOU ASK). THERE ARE NOT MANY ASREALLY THE AREA IS SO ENCLOSED SO NOT MUCH TO TAKE. WHAT I DID WAS TO START OFF WHERE I WAS CAMPED AND GO FULL CIRCLE AROUND THE LOCH SO THAT YOU CAN HOPEFULLY GET A SENSE OF THE BEAUTY OF THE PLACE. PLEASE EBAR IN MIUND THAT YOU ARE NOT SEEING THE FULL EXTENT OF THE LOCH. IT IS NOT A STRAIGHT BODY OF WATER AND BESIDES, MY LENS DOES NOT EXTEND TO THE FULL DISTANCE. NEXT TIME I WILL BE ABLE TO SHOW YOU MORE AS THERE IS A WHOLE DIFFERENT VISTA TO PLAY IN.
AND LASTLY, MY HOME FROM HOME

HOPE YOU ENJOYED MY LITTLE JAUNT. 'BYE FOR NOW.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CAROLIAN 7/21/2013 1:32AM

    I love it in that area but Ian doesn't like camping and he wont let me go on my own I was going to ask JJ to come with me sometime but don't know if sharing a tent would be appropriate him being of the male persuasion I t wouldn't bother me he is the same age as my kids. Just other people talk..
So glad you had a good time I haven't been fishing for about 14 yr we have an estuary about a mile down from me and at the moment there is loads of mullet with the water being so low they are in the deep pools under the bridge Have a ghood summer HUGS to you and family xxx

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JOYCECAIN 7/10/2013 9:40AM

    Loved the blog. With you, I can see some much and learn tons. I am glad you have a nice trip. Your pictures are lovely. Thanks. Love Joyce

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-WISPY- 6/28/2013 9:07PM

    Mac this has had me enthralled since I started reading. You tell a great story and the photos are just home to me.

We too experienced an assortment of holiday folk. No USA though. Ours were mostly NZ's and Aussies, oh yes and Chinese. Some lovely, some not so good just as you experienced.

I am amazed that you can do as much as you can and so happy that over all it was an enjoyable time away.

emoticon

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SHERRY666 6/22/2013 3:14PM

    I THINK YOUR LITTLE CAMPING AREA IS GREAT....... IT LOOKS SO QUIET AND PEACEFUL.... BUT I GUESS NOT WITH ALL THE VISITORS...... BUT EVEN SO IT'S NICE TO MEET PEOPLE AND HEAR THEIR FISHING STORIES...... I'M HAPPY YOU TOOK A PICTURE OF THE TENT.... I WAS WONDERING HOW BIG IT WAS.... BUT YOU HAD EVERYTHING YOU NEEDED AND MADE IT COMFORTABLE ENOUGH TO ENJOY.......... THANKS FOR SHARING YOUR FISHING TRIP WITH US MAC........ I'M GLAD THAT YOUR FIRST TIME BEING ALONE TURNED OUT SO WELL......

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CONTENTCHRIS 6/22/2013 12:07PM

    emoticon for sharing this experience. I will say this you do not sugar coat things and that is refreshing. I am always the one to grab a poor spot that looks amazing until I am set up. Cudos for your effort and finding joy in even a bit of a pickle at times. I enjoy nature for a few hours here and there but not like I used to when I was younger, Nice blog my friend!

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ARTJAC 6/22/2013 2:38AM

    emoticon emoticon

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DEE107 6/22/2013 12:44AM

    thanks Mac for sharing this

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ANJAYS-JOURNEY 6/21/2013 5:52PM

    I love Loch Venachar, it is so very beautiful and the lake is great for cooling of in on a real hot day!! Great to hear you had fun

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ANNUAL TRIP ON THE CANAL

Thursday, May 23, 2013

I WILL BE QUITYE BRIEF IN MY WORDS AS I THINK MY PHOTOS WILL TELL THE STORY FAR BETTER THAN I COULD.

THE DAY STARTED OFF WITH US WONDERING IF THE TRANSPORT WOULD TURN UP. APPRENTLY, THE CHAPWHO WAS ORIGINALLY BOOKED GOT HIS DATS MIXED UP AND TURNED UYP TH DAY BEFORE. WHEN HE PHONED OUR SECRETARY TO SAY THAT NOBODY HAD TURNED UP SHE WAS NOTSURPRISED AND TOLD HIM THAT HE HAD GOT THE WRONG DATE. FORTUNATELYHE WAS ABLE TO SEE THE FUNNY SIDE OF IT AND ARRANGED FOR ANOTHER COMPANY TO PROVIDE A MINIBUS FOR US FOR THE SAME PRICE.

SO, AT 12 NOON WE ALL TROOPED ON BOARD AND WENT FOR A SUPERB LUNCH AT A PUB THAT WAS, UNTIL NOT LONG AGO, A PLACE TO BE AVOIDED FOR FOOD. A YOUNG COUPLE HAVE TAKEN OT OVER, THOUGH, AND I CAN HONESTLY SAY THAT THE TRANSFORMATION HAS BEEN AMAZING. THE FOOD WAS EXCELLENT BUT THEY NED TO CUT DOWN THEIR PORTION SIZES A BIT. NOT EVERYONE WAS ABLE TO CLEAR THEIR PLATES AND ONLY A FEW WERE ABLE TO PLOUGH THEIR WAY THROUGH ALL THREE COURSES. I WASN'T ONE OF THEMBUT I THINK I CAN PUT THAT DOWN TO ME HAVING SOUP AS A STARTER, SOMETHING I HAVE GOT INTO THE HABIT OF LATELY AS THE DESSERTS WOULD BE SO TEMPTING TO FORCE DOWN OTHERWISE.

THE COST PER HEAD HAD TO BE RAISED FOR THE BUS AS WELL, AND THAT WAS NOT GOOD AS I HAD TO ASK EVERYONE FOR EXTRA MONEY, SO IT MADE FOR AN EXPENSIVE DAY OUT IN THE END. THERE WERE SPACES LIGHT ON BOARD SO WE HAD TO COVER THOSE. NEXT TIME I AM GOING TO GET ALL THE MONEY PAID IN ADVANCE SO THAT THE COST IS COVERED COMPLETELY, AND THEN IF PEOPLE DO NOT TURN UP IT IS THEIR MONEY THEY HAVE WASTED. THERE WILL BE A NEXT TIME AS THE GROUP HAVE ALREADY AGREED THAT WE WOULD GO BACK TO THE SAME PLACE BUT GO DOWN THE CANAL IN THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION. APPARENTLY, THERE IS MORE TO SEE THAT WAY.

ALL IN ALL THE DAY WAS A SUCCESS. EVERYONE WAS THOROUGHLY RELAXED AND REALLY ENJOYED THEMSELVES, AND THANKS TO THE WEATHER BEING SO GOOD IT WAS A CASE OF US BEING ABLE TO SIT OUTSIDE THE CABIN AND SOAK UP THE AMBIENCE.

THERE IS NOT MUCH IN THE WAY TO SEE IN THE PHOTOS EXCEPT FOR THE CANAL COUNTRYSIDE AND SOME BRIDGES. THERE ARE A COUPLE OPF PHOTOS THAT I HOPE ENCAPSULATE THE DAY THOUGH. THERE IS ONE THAT SHOWS THE VIEW OF THE PILOT AND ANOTHER THAT KEN TOOK AS AN ARTY TYPE PHOTO USING A BRIDGE AS THE FRAME, BUT WHICH CAME OUT REALLY WELL. LASTLY, THERE IS ONE FROM ME WHERE I MANAGED TO CAPTURE THE PERFECT SUNSPOT ON THE WATER WHICH WILL TELL YOU HOW GOOD THE WEATHER WAS.

LASTLY, THE WHITE DUCKS YOU SEE IN ONE OF THE PHOTOS ARE THE MOST AGGRESSIVE DUCKS I HAVE EVER COME ACROSS. THE POOR MALLARD SWERE CONSTANTLY BEING BADGERED BY THEM AND ONLY WHEN THEY SETTLED DOWN, AS IN THE PHOTO, DID THEY GET PEACE.

THE PHOTOS ARE IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER GOING TOWARDS EDINBURGH. WE WERE SPLIT INTO TWO BOATS AND THE FIRST PHOTO IS OF THE OTHER GROUP. OUR GROUP WAS TAKEN UNAWARES, AS YOU WILL SEE WHEN I TOOK THEIR PHOTO LATER.

(THIS IS THE VIEW THAT THE PILOT HAS. JUST A SLIT ONLY AND AT THE BACK END OF THE BOAT AS WELL).
(THE SUNSPOT ON THE WATER. LOOKS LIKE SOMETHING FROM SPACE DOESN'T IT?). THE RAILS YOU CAN SEE THROUGH THE SECOND BRISGE ARE ON THE SIDE OF AN AQUEDUCT CALLED THE JOHN SCOTT RUSSELL AQUEDUCT. JOHN SCOTT RUSSELL EXPERIMENTED BY SENDING A WAVE DOWN A STRAIGHT STRETCH OF THE CANAL TO SEE HOW LONG IT WOULD LAST UNTIL IT DIES OUT. THIS BECAME KNOWN AS THE SOLITON, OR SOLITARY WAVE, AND NOW FORMS THE TECHNOLOGY THAT IS USED IN FIBRE OPTICS TODAY.

AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST... THE WHOLE GROUP TOGETHER.

OBVIOUSLY THESE ARE NOT ALL OF THE PHOTOS. I ACTUALLY TOOK OVER 50. I DO HOPE, THOUGH, THAT THIS SMALL SAMPLE WILL GIVE YOU SOME IDEA OF THE PEACEFUL AND SERENE BEAUTY OF THE THE DAY AND JUST WHAT A CALMING AND RELAXING DAY OUT IT WAS FOR ALL OF US.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JOYCECAIN 7/10/2013 9:43AM

    You all look like you had a great time. You are so fortunate to be able to do stuff like this. The pictures are gorgeous. Take care. Hope JoAnn gets internet going next month. I miss you. Love Joyce

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-WISPY- 6/28/2013 9:12PM

    Mac, finally got round to checking these out. Man what a great trip and lovely photos. Just shows how easy it is to make photos look like aliens. Just loved that pic.
Also the boat looks really comfortable and also lots of friendly faces. Much older than you though. This surprised me. You being a babe in arms still at 58.

Hugs Wispy

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CONTENTCHRIS 5/25/2013 4:45PM

    emoticon

I think this trip looks very nice!

I bet it was very enjoyable for sure.

I liked the water sun shot and it did look as you said for sure.



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ARTJAC 5/25/2013 12:26AM

    emoticon PHOTOS IT REMINDS ME OF WHEN WE HIRED A BOAT AT THE NORFOLK BROADS WHEN OUR BOYS WERE YOUNG LOOK LIKE YOU ALL HAD A GOOD TIME AND GOOD WEATHER

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CAZ5346 5/24/2013 11:30AM

    MAC, SURE LOOKS LIKE YOU HAD BEAUTIFUL WEATHER TO ENJOY YOUR DAY TRIP' I LOVE THE PHOTO OF THE SUN SPOT ON THE WATER. THANKS FOR SHARING.

CAROL

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DEE107 5/24/2013 12:09AM

    love the pictures Mac trip sound wonderful

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JOSHWATS 5/23/2013 7:00PM

    The photos are beautiful Mac. Kudos to all the photographers. I always enjoy your blogs. I didn't realize that Scotland had any canals. I think you've definitely given me another country to add to my bucket list. Its a good thing I'm still in my 30s. This list is getting long!

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SHERRY666 5/23/2013 6:28PM

    MAC I DON'T KNOW HOW I GOT IN HERE TODAY AND A PAGE DIDN'T COME UP AND BLOCK ME........ I'M SO GLAD I COULD SEE THE TRIP.... THE PICTURES ARE GORGEOUS.... WHAT A BEAUTIFUL AREA TO TRAVEL..... I'VE NEVER BEEN IN ONE OF THOSE BOATS... BUT I SURE WOULD LOVE TO TAKE A TRIP LIKE THAT......... THANKS FOR SHARING..... I REALLY ENJOY ALL YOUR PICTURES. THE WHOLE GROUP TOGETHER...... WHERE ARE YOU?. IT LOOKS LIKE MANY IN THE GROUP ARE OLDER SO I DON'T KNOW WHY MOM WOULDN'T ENJOY ALL THAT FUN......

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LINDA! 5/23/2013 4:38PM

    The pictures are great. I also like the one with the sunspot on the water. You are right...it does look like a photo from a science fiction book or movie.

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