Life at the end of the road

August 1, 2012

Look, I’ve laid an egg!!

Filed under: Croft house for sale, daily doings — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 10:21 pm

Home alone, gosh it feels strange, just me and the ‘wee dug’, after having a houseful for a month it’s as quiet as the grave. The only thing that I can hear is the fan on my computer and the tick of the clock, no TV, not even the hum of a fridge or the rustle of wind on willow leaves through the open window. No hens clucking, no cats fighting and certainly no man made noises.

Apart from the ‘Pot Noodles’ much is how it was when I lived on my own, it’s just I’m in front of a computer and not reading a book. Funnily enough you’d think I was eating those tubs of desiccated monosodium glutamate back then, but you’d be wrong, I’ve actually had two for dinner 😦 Five years of living on my own and I cooked a proper meal every night, not a packet, carry out, ready meal or tin, always a real meal. It was one of the few rules that I had that kept me sane. Never drink alone, always cook a meal and shave every morning 🙂 A single man in his forties at this latitude is a ripe candidate for alcoholism or suicide so I had a routine and stuck to it 🙂

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The dreaded Pot Noodle I found in the caravan whilst cleaning it out, a left over from last years Rockness or Belladrum festival judging by the Nov 11 and Mar 12 use by dates. Still I hate waste and have never had much respect for dates on food so had a couple for dinner, redeeming myself slightly by accompanying them with some Hungarian pork belly and chorizo 🙂

It was of course a different story this morning with wifey getting ready to head south for a couple of days and trying to organize two ‘wee girlies’ who clearly did not want to leave after their fortnight at Arnish. They didn’t want to go, the dug wanted to and kept following everybody out to the car and jumping in. My son wanted to stay in bed, the four year old had a ‘wee accident’ so washing had to be done.


Also our broody hen with the squidgy crop needed a dose of natural yoghurt, we’re not actually convinced that there us anything wrong with her other than a desperation to have chicks. I think her crop is just soft because she’s not actually eating anything whilst she’s sat on the eggs.

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A tablespoon of yoghurt mixed up with layers pellets attracted her interest for a while but pretty soon she was back in the house sitting on some eggs 😦 Me, I’d be tempted to lock her up somewhere for a day or two but the ‘hen lady’ is having none of it 🙂 She wants to keep all her hens happy 🙂 and a happier bunch you won’t see anywhere in the land. More than can be said for their owners husband who’s permanently clearing hen pooh from the paths. Still if you’re ever actually fortunate enough to eat an Arnish egg you’ll know what I mean, I was lucky enough to have one this morning but the last time I had an egg was Sunday 😦



Most of the girls lay in the houses but there’s four or five that ‘lay out’ and bizarrely they do it in the same places that our previous hens did. They can be tricky to find but if you listen for the ‘I’ve laid an egg’ call you can usually spot them 🙂

After waving goodbye to the family, Molly and I went over to the Torran schoolhouse to fit new batteries and a solenoid to the Lister there. It was currently using one off Harry, my HR2 so I wanted to ensure it got the new one. It’s burnt three out in the last few years, which may not sound much but it hardly runs, possibly that’s part of the problem. Also I cannot be 100% certain that the last one I fitted was new, I have a sneaky suspicion it was an old one off one of my generators.

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That done we returned back home to add the old batteries to my growing mountain, ready for the scrappie 🙂 The bright, breezy and blue morning gradually deteriorating into a proper August day of wet muggy heat and midge 😦

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Absolutely perfect for scrubbing cleaning and power washing the old 1972 Thomson Glenelg caravan. A couple of boards on the roof of the Land Rover making a perfect scaffolding for doing the roof.

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I’ve tried all manner of cleaners on this to remove the grime and tree sap, bilge cleaner, forecourt cleaner, car cleaner, washing up liquid, fungicide and even phosphoric acid but nothing comes close to . And I really cannot believe that I have just done that 🙂 It’s funny where life takes you, had somebody told me thirty years ago that I would become a clam diver, a ferryman, pig keeper, festival goer and caravan owner on a remote Scottish island I would have laughed 🙂 In fact I’m almost laughing now, for I can hardly believe it myself, I even have a dog and teenage son, now that is a miracle 🙂

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I know, it’s really sad but I just love everything about this old Thomson It’s Scottish, almost ‘Clyde built’ and completely original, or at least all 1970’s, even down to the carpet. Not that we ever used it much, just three or four times a year to go to festivals, but what fun we’ve had in it.

We thought that this year it would be confined to its recent duty as ‘egg packing station’ but that’s been relocated to the porch and I’m going to take this to college 🙂 Or at least a caravan park nearby, or someone’s drive 🙂

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My main objective over the next few weeks is to get everything as ready as possible for my long absence so I made a start on the wood. Not an epic splitting session as I don’t want to wreck my back but just a few barrow loads each day.

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Another thing I did after power washing all the hen pooh from around the bird table, was to move it into the digger track. The ‘cat proof’ table used to be right in front of the kitchen window by a concrete path and a patch of gravel but the chooks were turning it into a right mess whilst scratching away in the small stones. By sticking it in this raised bed for a while at least they’ll turn it over and fertilize it 🙂

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That was about it really and now I’d better go and shut the chooks in 🙂



  1. What a busy day you have had….have not been able to play the chook video – its got a red rectangle on it !

    Comment by SOTW — August 1, 2012 @ 11:59 pm

    • Morning She,

      that’s strange, it plays fine for me but having just checked it, it is only showing 3 views, so either it’s not playing for everyone or no one is interested in chickens 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — August 2, 2012 @ 4:54 am

      • Worked fine for me. Ah…I recognise that sound too……..unmistakable

        Comment by Iain — August 2, 2012 @ 6:40 am

      • It has played. Really made me smile..x

        Comment by SOTW — August 4, 2012 @ 8:38 am

      • Hi She, glad it worked at last, bloomin computers, I’ve just got a new one and given up on it 😦

        Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — August 4, 2012 @ 10:29 pm

    • Four views now! Lovely sound! Can confirm the quality of the eggs – looking forward to more in due course.

      Watch that back before going on your hybrid training.


      Comment by Sue — August 2, 2012 @ 7:08 am

  2. Video working fine, excellent! Think we have a caravan the same in our garden, must look and see the make. Is Sedgefield too far away? Have contacts/relatives there with poss spaces. Think I looked it up and it was abt the same distance as your first offer. Not asked but will if you think it not too far away. TS21 is the postcode. I have 3 year old grandchildren so you must be brilliant foster parents to make your charges feel at home and happy – I can’t imagine what it feels like for children of 3, 4 and 5 (all mentioned recently) to go to live with someone they don’t know so you’d have to be very special!

    Comment by may cruickshank — August 2, 2012 @ 7:57 am

    • Hi May if it is a Thomson can you let me know, afraid I am the geek who put the Thomson Caravan history site together and have to admit would not have heard about Paul’s lifestyle had it not been for him owning his fine example!

      Comment by Thomson Caravans — August 2, 2012 @ 9:49 pm

      • There is only the resemblance of a label left and doesn’t look like it is Thomson – seems to be C1 Sprite? There is another label somewhere else saying Alpine. Sorry to be disappointing you!!

        Comment by may cruickshank — August 3, 2012 @ 8:01 am

      • No problem May, nice to know it was a rival Sprite, it sort of makes it Ok as Thomson and Sprite where the two closest rivals for the top spot for a few decades prior to the eighties. The Alpine is another good quility van. Sprites downfall was becoming part of the CI Chain in my humble opinion. They where never as good after that as they became just another plastic looking caravan.
        Many thanks for taking the time to check.

        Comment by Thomson Caravans — August 5, 2012 @ 1:29 pm

  3. Ah the peace of an empty house, nothing quite like it, although I have to admit its a rare occasion when ours is quiet, always something or someone making noises and I tend to have the radio or telly on. But occasionally sit in the middle of the night with a cup of tea and a ciggie in the silence and enjoy the solitude! Good thinking time!

    Good to see new picks of the van, and yes I totally agree Fenwicks is most certainly the only caravan cleaner that really does what it sys on the plastic bottle, and its enviromentally safe so no worries about using it around the animals! I first heard about it through a friend and it wasn’t long before I was introduced to Mr Fenwick, actually his name is Mr Smith but that would have stood out as much as Fenwick! Well thats what Roger said. I have tried all of their products and all are excellent, the bike cleaner is great on both push bikes and motor bikes and quads, gets rid of all the grease and grime as good as the caravan stuff does on the van! OOps sorry can’t help myself lol!

    No room at our house on the way down south but you are most welcome to pop in for a cuppa if you are across this way, J4 on M8!

    Hen vid played OK, gave the dog a fright too, lol He was a bit too inquisitive when we saw a friends chooks and ever since has a fear of them. Maybe a good thing, a peck on the nose and he now runs a mile when he hears one!

    Take care Paul


    Comment by Thomson Caravans — August 2, 2012 @ 9:59 pm

  4. Still problem here with the “chook” video.
    BUT …. shock horror and everything else a ripe tomato has been stolen on Rona !

    Comment by SOTW — August 2, 2012 @ 11:21 pm

  5. My ! The depth of grief i feel for the chook video problem. But, by god she was a happy burd,
    Chief ,i must by now be the only follower from Mexico so can you please stop all the lazy rizes and the stolen camera shit for postponing the blog , new boat education and all that shit is also lame, your choice! but what else do i have to see or read in my unimportant wurld, fafff(Scottish wurd meaning Fafff) The hungarian belly interesting, chorizo bought or made ?
    Got some mexican pictures of my chorizo, tuscan salami and bacon makin stuff. would like to share them, because i can.

    Got my sisters wedding in Feb 2013, Big f off hotel somwhere If im still allive and you are too i would love to meet with you and the ever evolving team.
    The jenny hut looks perfect, maybe the wife and wean could sleep in yer bath tub.

    Yer page means alot to me my friend !


    Comment by Sean maloy — August 3, 2012 @ 12:44 am

    • Sorry Sean,

      however I don’t think your the only one in Mexico, have you been spreading the word?? I get a little Mexican flag comes up in my stats and it appears quite regular with more than one hit 🙂

      Chorizo and pork belly all homemade but not by me, bring some tequila with you in February, it’s always a gloomy month 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — August 4, 2012 @ 10:28 pm

  6. Back home 😦 after a great week on Raasay :-). I can now confirm that the ‘Arnish Egg’ is a great delicacy when boiled with a soft yolk with a little bit of salt – compliments to the ‘hen lady’ (and of course the chooks).

    Comment by Derek — August 4, 2012 @ 11:45 am

    • Glad you made it back safely Derek, how I wish I could have an Arnish egg 😦

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — August 4, 2012 @ 10:30 pm

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