Life at the end of the road

March 9, 2011

Thin on the ground :-)

Filed under: daily doings, hydro, weather, wind turbine — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:23 pm

It’s news that’s thin on the ground, of white stuff there’s plenty, well at least there was this morning at 6:30am when I poked my head out of the door. It came as no surprise because it was forecast, and even before I rose out of my bed to the annoying voice on my mobile phone saying “the time is five forty five, it’s time to get up, the time is five forty five” ad infinitum had I not turned it off.

Why the hell we need these stupid voices and noises on our phones and computers is beyond me, I may be a little dim at times but I don’t need a friggin tacky tune to play everytime I switch my phone or computer on just to tell me. One who knows me may find it hard to believe but sometimes I like things quiet 🙂 A simple beep or two will do for the alarm and forget the ‘welcome to Nokia’ cr4p and a colourful handshake using up processor power and flattening my battery everytime I turn on the phone.

090311 008

Actually, apart from the inane woman on the alarm and the idiotic predictive text function that is the default in SMS I really like this phone. It is an ‘old persons phone’, no silly camera, no internet, no heart monitor, or friggin pedometer like my last phone, I mean what the ‘four letter word’ is all that about, I want a phone to phone people not give me hypochondria. I want a phone with big numbers I can see and a volume I can hear and this marvellous little offering that Santa left me does all I require 🙂

Anyway, sorry for going off on one there, where was I ??? Oh I remember, lying in bed looking at the snow on the Velux windows awaiting Miss Nokia 🙂 Once she’d driven me out of bed and I’d done the usual pot of coffee I headed out the door to check my instruments before leaving for work. My instruments being the various meters in my battery shed that tell me what’s what on the energy front.

090311 002

A steady 1.6Kwh going into the oil filled radiators (dump loads) in the porch with 50Kwh dumped in a week and 15Kwh overnight.

090311 003

With my hydro turbine doing 500w and the wind turbine over 1500w in the westerly breeze I set off for work with a big smile. Calum’s road had just a light dusting of snow over it,

090311 004


though I was a little apprehensive about wifey driving over Glam in my footprints two hours later.


090311 005

The day at work was pretty routine with me making a wee start on the weekly planned maintenance and of course ‘filling her up’, well almost, 3500lts took us up to 11500, just 500 short of our 12000 capacity.

090311 006

When I finally got home I was pleased to see another 15Kwh on the meter with 960w going into the heaters 🙂

weather 090311

But then it had been a good breezy day with both of us at work,

graph 090311



  1. What? Don’t they grit Calum’s road. I’d be writing to my local councillor 🙂

    A sad confession, I used to manage the development of mobile phones and I’m responsible for some of those features that you see on mobile phones. I hang my head in shame.

    Comment by Tony Giles — March 9, 2011 @ 9:36 pm

    • But obviously you have seen the error of your ways no Tony, you’re forgiven 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 10, 2011 @ 5:55 am

      • Saw the error of my ways? Nah, I had to flee when people started going postal due to the fact that all the rubbish I put on phones drained the battery in five minutes flat.

        Comment by Tony Giles — March 10, 2011 @ 11:53 pm

    • I’m not quite as isolated as Paul, here on the north coast of Sutherland, but still reasonably so – four houses nearly 1 km up a track with just me in one and a couple in another with the other two being holiday homes and empty for the winter. Any weekday there’s any snow the gritting lorry turns up around 11 o’clock. Can’t remember for Saturday but definitely not Sunday 😉 I was quite impressed when I first saw it.

      Comment by Ed Davies — March 10, 2011 @ 9:49 pm

  2. Paul, your refueling numbers don’t add up, or there’s an enormous hole in the tank.

    Comment by FrankC — March 9, 2011 @ 9:43 pm

    • Whoops Frank, sorted, it should have read (and now does) 12000 to fill and 8000 on board.

      Cheers, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 9, 2011 @ 9:56 pm

  3. Hi Paul

    You might like the new generation of smart phones, you could update your blog on the move with one and add pictures without the need for your old brick of a laptop! On my phone I have Ordnance Survey maps and admiralty charts for the whole country with GPS built in, no more paper maps needed. Very handy when Im out on the hills or even in the car. The alarm clock on my phone wakes me up to the lovely sound of Stevie Wonder singing “As” which is much nicer than any bleepy noise. Even the cameras on them are pretty good these days with high resolution and HD video. One of these could seriously reduce the amount of gear you cart around!

    Comment by Simon — March 9, 2011 @ 10:31 pm

    • You’ve got to be kidding Simon, I can’t even use the ‘Blackberry’ on the ferry with my engineers hands, a keyboard needs to be BIG and there’s no way you can fit a proper one on anything you can fit in your pocket, unless of course you travel about in a Tardis 🙂 Right enough the camera was handy at times, but for every good picture it took there were three bad ones, fine for taking a snap of how the wire went into the back of an alternator before removing them. Decent reliable pictures, not a chance 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 10, 2011 @ 6:02 am

  4. awwwww Paul, don’t knock the mobile phone too much … yes I’m an “old person” too and can sympathise with many of your comments, but I love the camera on my latest phone, it’s really good and since I broke my last digital camera (the fourth one I’ve demolished) I’ve given up thinking of buying another … and I love the reminders I can set, now I don’t forget birthdays and other appointments, I just pop them on the phone … and this mobile has got mapping built into it so it doubles as a satnav … and I use the notepad for my shopping list, every time I think of something I have to get I just add it on then when I’m in the supermarket hey presto, there’s my list … there’s a lot I don’t use, such as internet, games and many other things I don’t even know about

    this phone is touch screen with a full keyboard so no predictive text … and you can personalise the screen (well you can if you know what you’re doing, which I don’t, so son did it for me) so no complicated menu options to navigate

    Comment by carina — March 9, 2011 @ 10:54 pm

    • You either love them or hate them Carina, me I scribble my shopping lists on the back of old envelopes, find the camera’s worse than useless and have a pretty good sense of direction, look for moss on trees in the country and satellite dishes in the town to see which way north or south is 🙂

      OK, I know that I have a ‘pratnav’ in the Old Girl but I do like buying shiny things for her 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 10, 2011 @ 6:07 am

      • yes I used to use old envelopes too … and invariably left them on the desk when I went off to the shops, ugh!!

        Comment by carina — March 10, 2011 @ 9:33 pm

      • So do I Carina 🙂 🙂 🙂

        Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 11, 2011 @ 6:20 am

  5. the first shot of calum’s road with the light coating of snow really does give a sense of his herculean labor. sometimes it’s hard to see it when it blends into the landscape.
    thanks, hope this finds you all well.

    Comment by jeannette — March 9, 2011 @ 11:25 pm

  6. So when you generate more power than you are using and the batteries are full, the power goes to the oil filled radiators heating element to provide heat for the house?
    Also the wifey wanted to know about the loo out side the door in a previous post, Is it the only one at the house or is there one inside?
    I should be receiving my copy of Calum’s Road tomorrow.
    Great reporting . You may want to check out the new I-Pad

    Comment by Tony — March 10, 2011 @ 12:10 am

    • Good morning Tony,

      the loo was left there two years ago when I fitted a new bathroom and I never got around to moving it, I kinda like it now as it’s handy and cool for storing a few cans of beer in in the summer 🙂

      Aye that’s what happens with the excess power, there are three radiators that come on sequentially as the voltage rises, it works very well but is uncontrollable, in the new house we will dump heat into an insulated water tank to be fed into the UFH.

      Cheers, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 10, 2011 @ 6:13 am

  7. Did I miss something? “the new house”? Are you building a new house? Where? Why?

    (Totally with you about phones BTW. We bought a new landline phone recently according to the criteria of it being the BIGGEST one available. Still suffers from the prob. that if you cradle it on your neck you risk hitting the “hang up” button, though.)

    Comment by Neil King — March 10, 2011 @ 2:30 pm

    • Morning Neil,

      I’ve wanted to build a house with a view for many years now and one that I can heat with a candle 🙂 It will be in that walled area about 100m SW of our current one, just check it out on Bing or look on my posts under shed/house

      Cheers, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — March 11, 2011 @ 6:23 am

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: