Life at the end of the road

August 23, 2013

I’m sorely tempted

Filed under: boats, daily doings, New hybrid ferry — Tags: , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 10:19 pm

Friday night now, and apart from work and a checkout girl in Lidl I don’t think I’ve spoken to anyone since I arrived, having said that I’ve not really felt like speaking to anyone apart from the myriad of workers and contractors working on our new ship. It’s been a bit of a contrast to my last trip down here when I was accompanied by the rest of our crew and I had ‘The man from Gourock’ for stimulating evening conversation. In some ways it’s been more relaxing as I’ve been in bed early and sober but I do miss the joint cooking Smile 

Apart from a ‘Tesco’s finest’ pasta that I had tonight I’ve been living off salads, olives, anchovies, feta cheese, salami, prosciutto  and fresh wholemeal bread. One thing about staying in a town, everything is on your doorstep, you have no idea how hard it is to get anchovies on Raasay Smile actually you probably can now. However there once was a time, not that long ago when the nearest place you could buy an anchovy was the Applecross stores and that must be 60 miles away by road. Here in Gourock I could probably buy anything from cotechino to cocaine if you so desired, personally I prefer the ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’ approach Smile Though, the last time I tried cocaine was as a schoolboy at the dentist!!!!! Can you believe that, when I was a kid the dentist could inject you with a class A drug and then let you wander out on the street ‘high as a kite’ and with no sensation in your mouth Smile I can still remember it to this day, staggering out of the Avenue Parade dental practice at thirteen with my head spinning and thinking ‘wow, this is great’ . Well, blow me, it’s still there !!!!! bet you don’t get cocaine or ‘laughing gas’ anymore Sad smile

Back on the ‘Hallaig’

Anyway, sorry for ‘going off on one there’ but I’m back on the Hallaig watching it all come together and it’s quite exciting for an old dog that lives out ‘in the sticks’.


The luxurious passenger lounge has been getting its floor covering laid, a nice durable blue vinyl affair, streets ahead of the Loch Striven’s painted steel deck.

 006  007

Valves got checked and adjusted by the Tec Source technicians and an expert from Imtech altered some of the graphics on our ‘mimics’.

1  2

As a ‘nuts and bolts’ type of person I gotta say that I’m in awe of the Darryl and Theo’s of this world who deal with LPU’s, PLC’s, CPU’s and the like, I just hope they leave their phone numbers when they leave Smile


As well as the digital type stuff there was lots of painting going on and some nice flood lights got fitted in front and behind the wheelhouse.



The mammoth task of insulating all the aluminium superstructure continued

010  011

and the ‘Star Trek’ like bridge got one step nearer to completion.


All the while, our sister ship, yard number 726, the MV Lochinvar was steadily catching up with us. I’ve noticed a huge difference in both vessels during the last week. Ferguson’s winning this contract must have been a huge ‘shot in the arm’ for the area as both ships seem to be crawling with workers.


009  010

As far as I’m aware this rusting monstrosity, the ‘hoverbarge’ Siberia was the last thing they built in 2008


and the owner went bust. Fortunately I believe Ferguson’s were insured so didn’t lose out, but it does leave them with this white elephant. Don’t suppose there’s much call for transporting heavy loads across tundra and marsh in Scotland Smile 


So that’s it really, I’m beavering away quite happily two hundred miles from home on a bank holiday weekend. A few years ago I would have been at at ‘Creamfields’ had I not been working, but I’m getting far too old for that. Or am I Smile I really am tempted by this tomorrow.



Slam are old favourites of mine


Martin Mackay of  ‘Club 69’, the legendary ‘techno dungeon’ of Paisley and was at school with my wife and her sister, and  I’ve seen him play there several times. Josh Wink I’ve always admired and he never turned up at the Skye music festival the last time I was expecting to see him, some problem with his flight from Detroit if I recall.

Somehow I think it will be a glass or two of wine and an early night Smile



  1. Bottoms up mate, and a toast to another great post.

    Comment by Lloyd — August 23, 2013 @ 11:14 pm

  2. Morning, Paul

    Just get the length of that passenger lounge! A far cry from the MV Raasay (of which I was very fond) with its tine passenger saloon (sic) under the passenger deck. There were steep metal ladders up to the deck which I’m sure would be banned today on H&S grounds. One time (early ’80s) a lot of the older lsland folk walked on to the MV Raasay, dressed in black and all wearing hats, and disappeared into the saloon. It was raining but there was no room in the saloon so other passengers who couldn’t climb the ladders stayed on the car deck. There was a funeral on Skye and no-one had a car so it was ferry and bus. Don’t know how they got to Suisnish from Inverarish or elsewhere.



    Comment by Sue — August 24, 2013 @ 8:01 am

  3. You can’t beat a trip to the slam tent at a festival

    Comment by The Peoples Republic of Northumbria — August 24, 2013 @ 4:14 pm

    • You can’t beat a trip to the slam tent at a festival Me and the wife are in there somewhere 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — August 24, 2013 @ 9:33 pm

      • Just had to share that one on my fb page. .

        Comment by The Peoples Republic of Northumbria — August 24, 2013 @ 10:37 pm

  4. My mum still goes to Lawsons dentist.

    Comment by MW — August 24, 2013 @ 8:44 pm

    • My mum still goes to Lawsons dentist

      Bet she doesn’t come out ‘high as a kite’ off Charlie 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — August 24, 2013 @ 8:54 pm

  5. Nitrous oxide gas is still widely used in States’ dentist offices. I like slipping on the “bozo nose” (clown) because then I can regulate how much pain killer I inhale. One still feels the pain, you just don’t care that it hurts. I once returned directly to work and all the same old frustrations didn’t bother me one bit! They have stopped using straight cocaine injections since the 1940’s in favor of novacaine (“new” =nova) which never did much for me. I wonder what a Slam tent would be like on laughing gas?

    Comment by George Leddick — August 24, 2013 @ 11:55 pm

    • I once found 25lts of Novacaine washed up on the beach in liquid form and thought it was paint thinners !!! It was years before I found out what it was, and that was by pure accident (and after I’d used most of it for cleaning paint brushes) Sure enough, you dipped your finger in it, rubbed it on you gums and they went numb. Breathing in the fumes was a great cure for a hangover too 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — August 25, 2013 @ 7:06 am

  6. Any word of sea trials Paul.


    Comment by angus — August 26, 2013 @ 7:46 am

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