Life at the end of the road

March 25, 2013

All quiet on the Western front :-)

Filed under: Croft house for sale, daily doings, harbour, hydro — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:25 pm

Eight days since I last posted, now that’s a record by a long shot, even when at ‘deaths door’ I’ve managed to post at least a couple of times a week. Sadly South Shields, or to be fair ‘urban life’ knocked the stuffing out of me and had me holed up in my room warding off Churchill’s ‘black dog’. No not that stupid one from the car insurance advert but the one that Winston Churchill had to fend off throughout his life ‘the black dog of depression’.


I just love the ‘Black Dog Institutes’ logo Smile


Fortunately a weeks studying of Ohms law



stimulated my grey matter enough to keep him at bay Smile Well that, several bottles of red wine and endless ‘online’ exercises of electrical equations. It must have worked for I got 93% in the exam and 14 out 14 for the section on Ohms law, something that stunned me to say the least Smile 

What winter !!!!

Anyway, with the long ordeal behind me I awoke to news of chaos on the roads due to snow, ferries cancelled by wind and the whole island of Arran without power. Not so good for one of our team who’s home it is, and poor news for two more who had to get to Campbeltown, as the A83 was blocked with snow.

Yours truly had no such problem, though there was a little snow on the road before Dalwhinnie  and an accident just three miles north had closed both carriageways for several hours. Me, in my 370 mile journey from South Shields to Arnish saw virtually nothing !!! Well apart from the nightmarish scenes on TV at my parents house Sad smile OK, it was cold and windy, bitter in fact, but nothing compared to what the rest of the UK was experiencing.



This will be Loch Duich on Saturday



and this another ‘black dog’ Smile


010  011

Two weeks away from Sconser had seen much progress on ‘The wall from Donegal’ and works to the new slip.



Apparently this is the first slab of the prefabricated slipway going in and somewhere there’ll be a diver underneath it Sad smile I think it’s just the lower sections that are being pre cast, the rest of it will be poured I’m sure.


013 014


Just check out the shag supervising operations Smile these birds always follow a diver Smile

Home at last

After a long lie in, well 9:00am on Sunday I went out to feed the herd Smile 




Just check out that hole that Jamie Lea is digging, I dunno what’s down there, perhaps a twenty year old stag Smile but whatever it is she started it two weeks ago Smile It’s funny because none of the other pigs seem to bother with it and she only visits it in the morning, very strange.


018 019

No sign of winter here in this little corner of paradise Smile


017 028

In fact the puddles had dried out and left much frog spawn at the mercy of predators and the frost Sad smile



Yes it really was that sunny Smile



To be honest I didn’t get a great deal done because of my sore knee but the boys helped out and we managed to do some fencing repairs and creosoting.

029 030


Today had me lounging in bed once more, with darling wife ‘doing the honours’ regarding get child off to school and pigs fed, me I didn’t stir once more until getting up for 9:00am. Much of the glorious day I wasted on the phone and buried in paperwork but I did spend a couple of happy hours repairing punctures.

  040  041

These 8” wheels are a nightmare to repair and removing the tyres is something of a challenge. This particular one had a brand new tube fitted that I had to repair before fitting !!! cheap carp from Indonesia, it was actually split on a fold. I had spotted it before fitting but not a second similar one that wasn’t there when I checked the repair in the bath. Turns out the whole tube is rotten and I ended up putting the old tube back with patches on patches Sad smile


042 043

With air back in my tyres I went off on a tour with the ‘wee dug’, over towards Brochel first then along the track to Torran to check out my mates hydro turbine.



This ‘Harris Hydro’  turbine has a ‘head’ of over 90m with a penstock some 600m long so every now and then I give flushing out by opening a large ball valve. The idea being that it vastly speeds up the water flow and removes silt in the pipe, though just how effective it is I don’t know, one of my penstocks suffered badly from silting and I’ve yet to address it. Fortunately my pipes are only 270m long and I have a spare one installed Smile

047  052

That done we went up to North Arnish to check the water supply and came across another sure sign of spring, a group of lambs, the first I’ve seen. Two of them thought that the quad was mum so I got Molly to chase them to mum, and dad by the look of it Smile


All this excitement had me forgetting to check the newt, I mean water tank Smile


So Molly and I left the old Post Office and went home




  1. Glad to see you back, i thought your were snowed under!!

    Comment by v8mbo — March 25, 2013 @ 9:32 pm

  2. Yes good to see you back on home territory.

    Comment by alistair — March 25, 2013 @ 9:36 pm

  3. How have you managed to get away with it so easily? We’ve got 10ft drifts here on the Lancs/Yorks border! Looks like your firm has had an interesting time ferrying a lot of kit over to Arran. Anyway, its great to see spring arriving somewhere.

    Comment by Nick Bennett — March 25, 2013 @ 9:40 pm

  4. Hope the good weather lasts on Raasay as we will be up on Friday for a long weekend 🙂

    Comment by Derek — March 25, 2013 @ 10:01 pm

  5. Beginning to wonder if you were washed overboard, thus glad no black dog bit you. Sunshine is a powerful antidote. And the garden at the old homestead looks immaculate– so I assume the Dude ran out of online minutes?

    Comment by drgeo — March 25, 2013 @ 10:02 pm

  6. Glad to see a post from you Paul, i was beginning to wonder if the natives had captured and eaten you..

    Comment by The Peoples Republic of Northumbria — March 25, 2013 @ 10:45 pm

  7. Jamie lea has found the Arnish end of the tunnel to South Shields … you did go by tunnel didn’t you? Lovely to see those lambs – not seen any hereabouts yet this year.

    Comment by nonehpets — March 25, 2013 @ 11:21 pm

  8. Great to see you are back home Paul and even better to know that you have not had the horrendous snow that Arran and the Kyle of Lochalsh have. We have some snow and it freezing but generally safe and warm.

    Comment by Thomson Caravans — March 25, 2013 @ 11:29 pm

  9. Keep your eye on Jamie Lea, she might be sniffing out truffles!!. Congratulations for your mastery of OHM’s Law, it scrambled my brain and I still can’t fathom out how the square root of “pi” gets you to 415v on a 3 phase supply.

    Comment by alastair — March 26, 2013 @ 12:33 am

  10. congrats on your good grades, nice to see a pic of your mother whom you resemble? and so nice to think of you back on home turf. give miss molly a skritch for us. hope your knee feels better soon.

    Comment by jeannettesmyth — March 26, 2013 @ 6:45 am

  11. Good progress at Sconser but I know a man in the Council who said they wouldn’t touch a precast slipway with a barge pole. Made us rethink what we did at Tayinloan for the Loch Ranza. Interesting to see how people change their minds! Its funny how the Irish builders love their precast concrete.


    Comment by Alan — March 26, 2013 @ 10:07 am

  12. Glad you are back, missed your rumbling. Mind the red wine, it has a depressant in it, or so Gerald Durrell believed in ‘My Family and other animals.’ I think Whisky is OK though, Cheers. Jim.

    Comment by Jim Hewlett — March 26, 2013 @ 10:29 am

  13. Congrats on your exam results.

    Comment by Nigel Macleod — March 26, 2013 @ 12:34 pm

  14. Hi Paul

    Great exam results. Well done. Glad you’re back home; great that you’re not blanketed with the cold, wet white stuff. Trust you’re in the lee of this piercing North-easterly wind too – certainly a thin one!

    Comment by Carrie — March 26, 2013 @ 1:38 pm

  15. Paul,
    Good to have you back on line & thanks for the snaps of the sun. In the last two weeks darn sarf if we have had 8hrs of sun I would eat my hat. Second thoughts it is keeping my head warm. Great picture of your folks & the new lambs, spring can only be around the next corner. Only 44 days until I get up there.
    Welcome back.

    Comment by Arthur T Bomber Harris — March 26, 2013 @ 2:00 pm

  16. Glad to hear you are back where you belong and can get on with your life. Missed your postings.

    Comment by may cruickshank — March 26, 2013 @ 4:08 pm

  17. Glad to hear from you again Was beginning to get worried

    Comment by eileen1929 — March 26, 2013 @ 4:43 pm

  18. Ohm: it’s not just a good idea, it’s The Law !

    Comment by drgeo — March 26, 2013 @ 6:28 pm

  19. 90% of electronic engineering is knowing Ohm’s Law. The rest is just guesswork and plagiarism.

    Comment by gordonjcp (@gordonjcp) — March 29, 2013 @ 2:44 pm

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