Life at the end of the road

April 29, 2013

The granite city

Filed under: boats, daily doings — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:26 pm

Well, I had intended to post last night but got side tracked by the bed Smile the long days travelling was just too much for a tuechter  http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=teuchter like me. Having risen early, plonked away on here for an hour or so, then set off for the ferry twice, prior to driving for five hours and going for a ‘march’ with my dad, I was whacked. Then I discovered that the granite in Aberdeen’s city centre buildings isn’t very conducive to 3g phone signal and had to purchase some internet access from my hotel Sad smile

So, here I am in the Premier Inn http://www.premierinn.com/en/hotel/ABEPTI/aberdeen-city-centre     just across the road from the Lemon Tree http://www.boxofficeaberdeen.com/venues/the-lemon-tree furious that I’m going to miss Public Service Broadcasting’s gig on Skye on Wednesday.

 

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I really can’t believe it, they’re playing across the road from here on the 9th of May so I’ll miss them, they’re in Stornoway on the 3rd, so had I been on the MV Hebrides I could have seen them, Inverness on Thursday so not practical and I’m certainly not driving to Ullapool on Saturday Sad smile

 

Anyway, apart from being miffed at that, miserable cos I’m away from home and peed off due to having to travel on my precious days off everything is peachy.

Back on track

So, where was I, well I trundled down the pot holed road gingerly to the ferry terminal to catch the 10:00am ferry to Sconser,

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marvelling at the size of this electrical cabinet for our new ferry. You really couldn’t make this up, this cabinet is the size of a good sized shed and probably cost a years wages. Heaven knows who paid for it, but at the end of the day, be it HRC, CalMac or CMal it’s you and I, no planning permission or anything, up it goes. You and I want to fart and we need planning permission, they want to put up a friggin warehouse next to the waiting room and ‘not a problem’ Smile When the harbour was built it was known that a hefty power supply would be required down on the pier but no one would pay for it so an inadequate one was installed. A few years on we end up paying ten times as much, digging up the old cable and installing a heavier one, this will be the ‘green option’ Smile You could not make this up, I despair.

Making use of the time afforded by not having to rush, and once at Sconser I took advantage of the lack of activity on the Sabbath to take some pictures of progress.

 

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The waiting room and store were looking beautiful and a whole pile of Caithness flagstones were stacked ready for use,

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this is going to be one lovely looking ferry terminal.

 

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Or at least it is until the droves of canoeists, sorry, ‘sea kayakers’ turn up and jam the place up with all their cars and carp. Now I’m really sorry if you’re reading this and happen to be a kayaker, but for every responsible one there are ten ‘planks’ that jam up the slipway, park their cars stupidly and generally act like pricks showing off their middle aged ar5es to all and sundry at Sconser. No, I’m not making this up and I’ve photographs to prove it, we really do not want to see your bottoms, and whilst your canoes, sorry kayaks, are very expensive they should not be left on the slipway for us to drive around. Joe public is not impressed by them, only other canoeists, sorry enthusiasts appreciate a nice kayak  Smile

 

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A mighty fine shed indeed, OK, the slates and hinged doors will probably be in Sconser golf club by this time next year year but it sure is a beautiful bit of masonry Smile

Sorry if I’ve lost the the thread a little but some chicken goujons, prawn cocktail and several glasses of beer intervened so I could be a little more crabbit http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Crabbit than usual Smile Anyway, after leaving Sconser I headed to my parents via Kyle,

 

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the Hebridean Princess  http://www.hebridean.co.uk/our-ship.html and a helicopter

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probably returning from Rona

 

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after delivering the Sunday papers Smile

A lovely lunch and then walk with my father followed,

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dementia may be a terrible affliction but it certainly doesn’t affect his stamina and I was absolutely stunned when we passed this sign on the road.

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That’s an air valve he chirps !!!!! he doesn’t know who I am, what day it is or which planet he’s on but my dear dad informs me that buried beneath that sign is a water main air valve. I am gobsmacked, I’ve been seeing these signs for years and never knew what they were about Smile

 

Monday

Eventually I arrived at the hotel in Aberdeen, met my ‘hybrid’ compatriots and settled down for the night prior to heading off for Petrofac http://www.petrofac.com/ in the morning.

 

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It was a very interesting day amongst the hustle and bustle of the UK’s busiest oil port on the banks of the river Dee and much was learnt.

 

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Things like how to start a Lister ST1 Smile

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and get into a really scary lump of aluminium some long way above the sea Sad smile

 

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OK, perhaps not that scary Smile

 034  028

but the ‘tied alongside’ version somehow seemed more appealing Smile

 

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I have to confess at being somewhat bewildered by it all, I’ve never seen so many ships, let alone virtually in a city centre,

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and it was good to be amongst members of the regular ‘hybrid team’ Smile

Another familiar sight was the Geco Diamond

 

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a seismic survey ship that I’d seen last week in the Minch,

 011

https://lifeattheendoftheroad.wordpress.com/2013/04/23/very-busy-in-the-minch/

 

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only this time she was berthed securely in port behind a listing supply boat.

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19 Comments »

  1. That harbor looks pretty crowded, surely somebody will need to be rescued soon and you will be ready! Will the new ferry also have similar equipment ? Here’s hoping they have invested in plastic mock ups, in case the “hybrid team” gets to learn mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. How long will you be in Aberdeen?

    Comment by drgeo — April 29, 2013 @ 9:45 pm

    • Will the new ferry also have similar equipment ?

      Of course not DrG, what would be the point of that 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — April 30, 2013 @ 5:43 am

  2. Ha ha,, starting an st1,,now theres a novelty..

    Comment by The Peoples Republic of Northumbria — April 29, 2013 @ 11:27 pm

    • Hi Steve, was surprised just how hard that Lister was to actually start 😦

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — April 30, 2013 @ 5:42 am

      • two man job, truth be known…

        Comment by The Peoples Republic of Northumbria — April 30, 2013 @ 12:55 pm

  3. The monstrous green box may have been better sited on the blind side of the Raasay waiting room. Will it have a Danger of Death sign ? We have state of the art long distance coaches. Recently some of the coaches are wearing a paint job, making them look like a box covered with AstroTurf, really ghastly, at a cost of 50,000£sterling per coach. These same long distance coaches have a toilet, but it cannot be used, the operators do not have facilities to deal with emptying the toilet..! It’s a mad mad world, frankly I think a working toilet should have been the priority, and the £50,000 could have been used to buy a couple of ‘bog rolls’, but then of course I only travel on the bus…..and hopefully I will not need to use the motorway hard shoulder for toiletting. Hope you enjoy your visit to Aberdeen, it seems to have started well, but do you really need flotation devices in the kitchen?

    Comment by SOTW — April 30, 2013 @ 12:00 am

    • ‘Calums Road’ is in Skye on Tues.25th June.

      Comment by SOTW — April 30, 2013 @ 12:02 am

    • Good morning She,

      These same long distance coaches have a toilet, but it cannot be used, the operators do not have facilities to deal with emptying the toilet..! It’s a mad mad world, frankly I think a working toilet should have been the priority, and the £50,000 could have been used to buy a couple of ‘bog rolls’, but then of course I only travel on the bus….

      🙂 🙂

      do you really need flotation devices in the kitchen?

      The latest ‘safety directive’ says that lifejackets must be worn as there is a risk of the kettle overflowing and safety boots must be worn in case a bag of crisps falls on your feet 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — April 30, 2013 @ 5:41 am

  4. Nice to see my wee house has made it into one of your pictures Paul 🙂 If you’d been in Kyle Sunday afternoon you’d have got some cracking pics of a submarine heading up past Kyleakin at speed and very close to shore, i’m just glad i wasn’t on the bottom looking for scallops as it would have gone right over me (at low tide too :-().

    Hope the course goes well, blog excellent as ever.

    Rich.

    Comment by Rich — April 30, 2013 @ 12:36 am

    • Morning Rich, glad you’re still following, are there many scallops left 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — April 30, 2013 @ 5:42 am

      • Aye mate i’m still here, sadly not many left out there, but i have found a secret stash 😉

        Comment by Rich — April 30, 2013 @ 8:49 pm

  5. What the hell is an Hybrid crew, all crabits are they? Perhaps it is just old age but I do get a little bit peed off the way that people use language these days. The one word that gets me going is the word enhanced, everything has now been enhanced, but bugger all has been improved. It has only happened in the last few years substituting the word enhanced for improved. It just doesn’t make sense. I also can’t understand what a seismic survey ship should be doing in the Minch from what I understand the whole basin is igneous rock and oil is found only in sedimentary rock so it was most likely just passing through

    Comment by Yorkshire Miner — April 30, 2013 @ 5:55 am

    • I also can’t understand what a seismic survey ship should be doing in the Minch from what I understand the whole basin is igneous rock and oil is found only in sedimentary rock so it was most likely just passing through

      Puzzled me to Dave, but it was the second one in a week and coincided with ‘Joint Warrior’ perhaps they were looking for submarines or had been further west. Who knows perhaps they just come from Brazil, either way they were an unusual sight and it was good to see the Geco Diamond amongst some ‘anchor handlers’ 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — April 30, 2013 @ 6:03 am

  6. Aberdeen harbour looks like an interesting place to look around – some serious offshore supply ships there really built to handle heavy weather. That emergency FRC on the ramp reminds me of a comment one of the astronauts that went to the moon said about the supposed escape systems on their spacecraft – where you risked possible death to escape certain death! Looks like it’d be hard on the back when it hits the water!

    Good luck!

    Mark

    Comment by fingalextravaganza — April 30, 2013 @ 6:14 am

    • There have been more people killed testing lifeboats than ever saved by them Mark 😦 Five Filipinos just a month or two ago in the Med 😦

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — April 30, 2013 @ 6:50 am

  7. Its even worse in ” Oil Land” The north sea can be MADNESS!!!! I will tell you all about it over strong drink!!

    Comment by v8mbo — April 30, 2013 @ 11:56 am

  8. *amazed* they could have boxed that green version on some stone too,subject to planning of course…….
    How many years will that cabin last ya reckon?

    Comment by Roy cleary — April 30, 2013 @ 12:57 pm

  9. Interesting Googling the helicopters call sign, I think G-PDGN.to se what comes up: http://www.aaib.gov.uk/cms_resources.cfm?file=/dft_avsafety_pdf_023424.pdf
    &
    http://www.airliners.net/search/photo.search?regsearch=G-PDGN.

    Will you be back on the Striven in 10 days or still on the big ships?

    Comment by Arthur T Bomber Harris — April 30, 2013 @ 8:43 pm

    • The only time I’ll be on the Striven again ATB is as a passenger 😦 Interesting link about the chopper. The picture I took could well have had my mate at the controls, a fellow hydro,wind turbine, solar panel nut from Dingwall 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — May 1, 2013 @ 6:01 am


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