Life at the end of the road

November 20, 2012

It’s over :-)

Filed under: Uncategorized — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:00 pm

Just before 20:00 and I’m ‘scrumpied’ Smile


I know I shouldn’t but I couldn’t resist, sixty days away from home and it’s almost over. I know lots of people work far longer away from their loved ones and cope admirably but I don’t. It took me thirty or so years to find my little corner of paradise and a further twelve to find someone to share it with and I don’t like leaving her. A few days here and there in the summer at Rockness, Belladrum  or the Wickerman  is about as much of the ‘real world’ as I can cope with and more than two months in South Shields almost 400 miles from home is not my idea of fun.



Fantastic, there are 22 excellent ‘takeaways’ on Ocean road and a Morrison’s supermarket that actually sells stuff you need and like, bravo there’s a Tesco Metro open until 22:00 every night just a couple of hundred yards from ‘the village,’ but after the first week the novelty wears off as the pounds start to pile on and the wallet empties Sad smile Give me life in the sticks any day, a couple of hours mucking out pigs and cutting wood beats the carp out of ‘normality’ any day Smile I’ve got ‘office boy’ hands and a ‘beer belly’ despite doing exercises every morning and walking at least four miles a day Sad smile



I don’t think my hands have been so clean since I left the womb Smile

Anyway, with a bit of luck it will all be over with tomorrow, if I learn how to deal with ‘suspicious packages’ and Somali pirates soon enough I may well be heading north tomorrow Smile Smile Smile 



Before long my tiny prison cell could be replaced by the corrugated heaven of Smile


and I’ll see my ‘teenager’ for the first time in ages. He’ll be two inches taller, speak several octaves lower and probably not know who I am but ‘what the frack’ Smile



  1. So glad you’re going home, good luck with the journey. If you go through Edinburgh, welcome to a cup of tea/whatever if you need to stop/rest/eat. We are just off the Straiton turnoff on the bypass – 664 7909.

    Comment by may cruickshank — November 20, 2012 @ 9:09 pm

  2. bon voyage for the journey home, Paul

    Comment by cazinatutu — November 20, 2012 @ 9:43 pm

  3. Two months in a large town? I’m surprised you’re not sitting atop a mountain of scrumpy flagons. I go to Aberdeen once or twice a year for a few hours and that’s more than enough for me.

    Comment by Stonehead — November 20, 2012 @ 10:41 pm

  4. Aye, Paul, that’s well enough time away from the beloved island and family. Haste ye back!

    Comment by Sue — November 20, 2012 @ 10:57 pm

  5. Safe journey mate. and looking forward to hearing about the homecoming some considerable time after it has happened! God speed.

    Comment by Lloyd — November 20, 2012 @ 11:23 pm

  6. Well you got to the end of your tour, actually when your back how long until you move into a caravan at Arnish again (or are your staying in the house till after winter).
    I’ll raise a pint of Cider to you at the Orbital gig.

    Comment by mike — November 20, 2012 @ 11:27 pm

    • What can I say Mike,

      the brothers Hartnol rule 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 20, 2012 @ 11:41 pm

    • Oh how I wish I could be there Mike,

      or is it here 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 20, 2012 @ 11:44 pm

      • classic (big grin on face) also I think I prefer your commute to work. So is Raasay bigger when you get on it than when your looking at it from Skye

        Comment by mike — November 22, 2012 @ 5:45 pm

  7. thrilled to think you’ll be getting back to the end of the road in one piece, AND all eddimicated about somali pirates. good on you, i think a month or two in the city did you good. i am sorry you were homesick and glad to think of you speeding awa’.

    Comment by jeannettesmyth — November 21, 2012 @ 2:42 am

  8. Looks like a Scrumpy hangover is in the offing! Hope its not too bad lol!
    Have a great day Paul!

    Comment by Thomson Caravans — November 21, 2012 @ 6:29 am

  9. Another couple of weeks and you’ll have real “office boys hands” like mine
    You’re comment of such while I was hawling the lobster pots had a significant psychological effect on me, so I can understand your frustration of falling fowl to the same complaint.
    Our village in Devon is isolated today by floods.
    Safe journey home in The Old Girl and your Thomson Shell

    Comment by chrisb — November 21, 2012 @ 9:52 am

  10. Well done on completing your tour of duty! Have been missing all the Raasay gossip and photos. All the best for a safe journey back.

    Comment by Callum — November 21, 2012 @ 10:52 am

  11. Now is the time to set in motion for your skippers ticket, maybe just a thought. Well it looks like you’ve really enjoyed yourself and the experience will stand you well in your career. But now the best part is at hand the home coming. I’m sure everyone is looking forward to seeing your big smile Paul even the animals. So hop into your van and get home quick, don’t forget all the prezzys. Hope to hear from you soon through your blog.
    PS Remember the jingle to Fairy Soap.

    Comment by Polite Scouser — November 21, 2012 @ 11:24 am

  12. Hey, Paul, whilst you’ve been away they have been advertising for the extra mates for Hallaig and her sister.

    How does STCW 95 Engineer Officer of the Watch compare in seniority to Chief Mate or OOW that they are asking for? Or are those niceties just for the bean counters and you are effectively all equals under the Master?

    Comment by Phil Cook — November 21, 2012 @ 3:26 pm

    • I am the ‘lowest of the low’ a tiny cog in a big gearbox and that is just the way I like it Phil 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 21, 2012 @ 8:15 pm

  13. I would never had gone on to that ferry if I’d known that an attack by Somali pirates was likely! And none of the crew had been trained in dealing with them!

    Would you like a decent (free) fast broadband connection for your new house? We have a community broadband project going in Applecross and we’re looking for someone to be in charge of a “mast” – not really a mast, it’s small- which would allow us to bounce the signal from Apx to Arnish and back to Apx north coast, then out to Rona (Bill’s I hope) and back again. We need somewhere to supply the power (uses very little) and to check it and maintain it (easily done and would be no problem for someone with your skills). When you get home give us a phone: 01520 744348.
    I’m the local development officer in Applecross- same role as Lloyd and Joan in Raasay.

    Comment by Alison Macleod — November 21, 2012 @ 3:54 pm

    • I’m ‘all ears’ Alison and have already been in touch with Ian Bolas, can’t wait to get involved, my satellite link has been down for three weeks now 😦

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 21, 2012 @ 8:14 pm

  14. It makes you appreciate what you got.i spent one night in south shields once ,never again.

    Comment by phill — November 21, 2012 @ 5:45 pm

  15. Great, I’m glad you know about it already, it will be good to know that our community broadband will be allowing your world famous blog to reach its audience. We have funding for a year’s work installing and expanding the system, and at some point during that will have a ceilidh in Applecross uniting all involved- folk from Eigg, Rum, Broadford Village Hall Committee (our backhaul host), Raasay and Rona.

    Comment by Alison Macleod — November 21, 2012 @ 9:36 pm

  16. Two of Us (Going home)

    Comment by timbo614 — November 21, 2012 @ 11:02 pm

  17. Hope all goes well for the journey back, no disasters needed as me thinks you have enough on yer plate. Sad not to meet up with you and give you a wee present and even more so, the fact that you haven’ t been able to see much of this fine county.
    When you head back down for the next instalment, your more than welcome to pitch the thompson, here in the republic, the only thing you would have to consider is the daily commute to shields. Mrs R and I would welcome a fellow off gridder, keep a hold… and safe journey that man…

    Comment by The Peoples Republic of Northumbria — November 21, 2012 @ 11:10 pm

  18. A more local Going Home 🙂

    Comment by San — November 22, 2012 @ 6:45 pm

  19. Excellent news and I can only imagine the smile and great sense of relief when you get back onto Raasay and an even bigger one when you get to the end of the road.

    Comment by Arthur T Bomber Harris — November 23, 2012 @ 10:41 am

  20. If we’re doing the going home thing, we may as well have this one from a lad born in Glasgow and brought up in Blyth.

    Comment by Phil Cook — November 23, 2012 @ 2:41 pm

    • Oh, excellent 🙂 . Hadn’t known of that DVD before.

      I wonder why you had a text link to YouTube, and I got a giant (at least in my browser) preview? And how did timbo614 “linkify” his text? Enquiring minds … 🙂

      Comment by San — November 24, 2012 @ 6:44 pm

  21. @timbo614 Thanks.

    Comment by San — November 25, 2012 @ 12:48 pm

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