Well, I’m home, five days earlier than expected, majorly handicapped by a ten year old malt and 2012 Grenache, but home, ‘hic’.
Having been ‘on the waggon’ since I left home on Monday, and not actually buying anything to drink on the way back today I was somewhat stunned to find four bottles of wine, one bottle of scotch and four slices of black pudding awaiting my return
All of them being presents from folk who I’d ‘helped out’ in one way or another of late, none of them necessary but all of them very welcome and much appreciated, thanks everyone
Back to the ‘Finlaggan’
I left home on Monday morning after a very productive weekend for the 200 odd mile drive down to Kennacraig to join the Finlaggan.
The day was lovely, the roads fairly quiet and I beat the well worn path south past a somewhat dried out Loch Cluanie. Prior to the 1950’s and the dams construction the road used to go over that hill and down towards the now flooded Glen Loyne.
I say ‘dried out’ but I’ve just seen this picture from my blog on the day I left for South Shields almost a year ago on 24/9/12
definitely more water in today
With ‘time to kill’ I’d already made my mind up to stop on the way up Glen Loyne to check out one of it’s many interesting features, something that I’ve been driving by for nigh on forty years and never stopped to admire. It’s an old wooden suspension bridge across the river Loyne that has of late deteriorated and become almost invisible due to trees growing nearby.
I suppose that before the A87 was diverted after the flooding of Glen Loyne and the Cluanie dam then this was the only way of crossing the river.
Long since abandoned it’s rapidly decaying into the rocks and terrain that anchor it
but still worth a look before it vanishes.
No drive up the glen would be complete without stopping to admire the stones
piled up by tourists with nothing better to do No, seriously I love this phenomena and have admired it since I was a lad, not here, but in the Lake District, Yorkshire Dales or Brecon Beacons. It just takes one person to pile up half a dozen stones and before you know it you’ve got a cairn. Though for some reason here it’s multiple little piles rather than one large one
Anyway, it was whilst I was stopped there that I noticed the two old A87 bridges normally underwater in Loch Loyne itself,
better pictures here http://www.sabre-roads.org.uk/wiki/index.php?title=A87/Loch_Loyne
An hour later I was in Fort William just in time to see the ‘Jacobite’ http://www.westcoastrailways.co.uk/jacobite/Jacobite_Details.html or Hogwarts Express
The train journey from Fort William to Mallaig has to be the most spectacular in Britain, especially on a steam train.
What no headache
Well that went a little ‘pear shaped’, the bottle of Jura proved far more interesting than finishing off the blog last night! Anyway, it’s 9:30 now on Saturday the 3rd of August and it’s miserable, half a gale of wind and pishing rain being the order of the day, typical west coast summer weather really
Back to last Monday then and my drive south, this being Tarbert, a busy little fishing village off Loch Fyne http://www.tarbertlochfyne.com/index.php
Right in the middle of the harbour is this square stone construction which has always puzzled me. I wonder if it covers a rock and was ‘squared off’ to provide extra berthing when the port was jammed full of herring boats last century.
More great postcards and pictures of Tarbert http://isabellasgigha.angelajansz.com/?page_id=117
Shortly afterwards I was parked up at Kennacraig a few miles south and ready to join Finlaggan for a week in the engine room.
MV Hallaig is almost ready
It was Thursday when I got the phone call from head office telling me that I was back ‘on shift’ and to join the Hallaig in Port Glasgow next week. To say that I was excited at the prospect would have been an understatement, almost twelve months after starting this training lark we are at last going to join the worlds fist hybrid sea going Ro Ro ferry
Thanks to Stewart McMahon for that picture,
Anyway, it’s almost 11:00am now and time for me to ‘face the elements’