Life at the end of the road

October 28, 2021

The new normal :-(

Filed under: daily doings, Land Rover — Tags: , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 6:03 am

Not even 5:00AM and I’ve already been up an hour having gone to my bed last night not much after 8:00PM. I do hope this isn’t going to become a habit, Wednesday found me at the same carry on, up at 4:30 through no choice of my own. Mind you at least I managed to turn that bout of insomnia to my advantage by going along to Torran and collecting some empty gas cylinders as I’d had it in my mind to go to Sconser quarry and collect some stone chips for a Pal. Sure I wasn’t actually planning to do this until the 9:55 sailing but doing it sooner would give me more of the fine day ahead that was forecast to do other stuff outside. I was getting a little pi55ed off with the incessant rain the last few days.

So Bonzo and I boarded the Mule and wobbled down the track to collect empty Calor gas cylinders and load them into the trailer long before most sane people were switching their alarms to snooze. It was still pi55ing with rain but that was supposed to clear as the sun rose. Molly sat patiently in her cage in the back of the Land Rover while we two went on our ‘mission’. The daft wee dog is terrified of missing out out on a trip in the car and as soon as  I try and leave the house she’s waiting at the door no matter what. Hobbling to the back of the nearest vehicle and whining to be let in no matter what I’m doing. I gave up trying to leave her in the house ages ago so these days she spends a good part of most days quite happily sleeping in a car. Of course if I actually go anywhere she whines the whole way.

It’s been a while

After loading up and lashing the cylinders into the trailer we headed for the ferry, it was still quite early but I figured I’d walk the dogs at the ferry terminal as Molly copes better on the pavement, it was still raining Sad smile

Before going to the quarry we nipped into Broadford for fuel and broccoli Smile dunno what it is about broccoli but whenever I go to the Raasay store it’s gone Sad smile

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Being in no particular rush I stopped at the piece of ground opposite Scalpay that we used to call the ‘Red Shed’. The red paint that once adorned the tin shed that gave it its name have turned to rust long ago but this is where we came ashore when travelling off the island when I lived there 30 years ago. It looks as if they have been having a big clear up as my old ex army Series II was there along with the estate’s Series III that I spent many a happy hour underneath welding it for the MOT.

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I bought the Series II SWB along with a Series III SWB hardtop from the Kishorn fabrication yard when it closed in the eighties and used to use them runabouts on the privately owned island. It was an auction with sealed bids and unfortunately I won both, the diesel Series III I brought with me to Raasay when I left in 89. I believe it still languishes in a shed somewhere on Raasay but the 24V petrol stayed behind until thirty years later it found its way to Skye Smile The LWB 4 cylinder petrol above is a completely original, one owner and has only got a guaranteed genuine 49K on the clock!

Not what I asked for Smile

The once regular visitor to the quarry arrived on the weighbridge for the first time in over three year and I’m sure she’s put on weight Smile Previously she only weighed 3.2tonnes with an empty trailer, perhaps it was the full tank of diesel Smile

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I dunno how but I asked for 20mm stone chips but ended up with 20mm all in concrete aggregate which is great for mixing concrete but not what I wanted. Of course they offered to reload me but it was still raining and I couldn’t be bothered messing about with the trailer’s tipping mechanism to tip it and decided to take it anyway. Well you can never have too much concrete mix can you? Of course this meant I would have to tow it back home to unload it and then return for the chips but hey it was still raining and what else would I be doing Smile 

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Even with the schools back and the weather pish the ferry was still full of tourists with November just days away!

The first trip up Calum’s road with the ‘Old Girl’ grossing over 5tonnes was not a success, my electric fan wasn’t working and with the south wind up my ar5e their wasn’t much air over the radiator to cool it. Not having any tools to look at my fan I decided to leave the trailer in the empty Dun Caan car park and go get the Disco.


Leaving the empty trailer with its full load at the end of the car park I arrived back half an hour later to find this feckin’ idiot jamming me in! with the entire car park empty the friggin clown had reversed into the space immediately in front of the trailer Sad smile

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After ten minutes of frigging around I did mange to hitch up and drive out without scratching the buffoon’s Toyota and it had almost stopped raining Smile

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By the time I’d tipped my load and caught the 2:30 ferry back to Skye it had stopped raining Smile

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So I finally got my 2tonnes of chips, caught the 16:15 ferry back, dropped off the trailer complete with stones at my Pal’s house got home fed dogs, pigs, self and went to bed! It’s 7:00AM now black as pitch outside and I guess I should be thinking about feeding pigs and fixing my fan.


  1. I’m surprised you haven’t bid the owners for those two old Land Rovers and had them over to yours for spare parts Paul. You’ve not mentioned going back to the Hallaig have you retired at last?

    Comment by glenelgadventure — October 28, 2021 @ 7:00 am

    • I’m on holiday Matey be another fortnight until I’m ‘before the mast’ once more. Need to finish my Range Rover before I even consider another Land Rover. As for spare parts the only things interchangeable would be the rear quarterlights, a couple of light lenses and the prop shaft bolts 🙂

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — October 28, 2021 @ 7:36 am

  2. I’ve often wondered Paul … do you get your own personal ferry journeys for free as you don’t seem to hesitate to go back and forth. And also I’ve wondered whether Raasay residents get a reduced rate on the ferry. (Just being nosey, hope you don’t mind!!)

    Comment by Caroline — October 28, 2021 @ 10:14 am

    • Aye Caroline free for life after 15 years service. The ferry fares are same for everyone since the RET (road equivalent tariff) was introduced. Methinks it’s around £25 for a car plus 4 return perhaps £12 for a car and driver return.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — October 29, 2021 @ 7:17 am

  3. Gotta be honest… I’d have probably put a scratch in the Toyota… mostly likely whilst pushing it into a ditch! You’re a better man than me chap.

    Nice bit of history with the old series. Had a few in my time. Don’t miss leaf springs or manual steering but do miss the quality of the steel they used compared to the modern stuff. Anything 300tdi on is made of toffee.

    Comment by Matt — October 28, 2021 @ 4:28 pm

    • Aye Matt, the day I bought my first Range Rover in 1981 I swore I would never have leaf springs ever again. The later Landy chassis surely cannot be any worse than Nissan or Ranger ones hey. In a moment of weakness or was it sanity I can’t recall. I was convinced I needed something quiet, reliable, comfortable, economical and warm. I saw an immaculate looking Pathfinder at the Agricultural merchants one day and thought ‘something like that’. It was ten years old, leather interior, low mileage, not a mark on it well shod and gleaming. A couple of days later I saw it for sale on Facecloth or Gumtree, phoned up and rushed over to Skye for a viewing. Sure enough the body was pristine but the chassis was rotten! My Mate’s Ranger is just the same only his is a 66 plate whatever that is, not actually rotten yet but heading downhill very quickly 😦

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — October 29, 2021 @ 7:03 am

      • I think they’re all made of the same steel these days. I see a lot of post ’95 chassis work come my way. I don’t mess with the other 4×4’s because they tend to break in unexpected places. They also take so much to get to the repair site that I won’t have anything to do with them. Lovely engines and some the running gear. Got an Isuzu 2.8 in a 90. Just nothing else nice to say about them. Certainly can’t hose one out without risk of cocking something up. They do need a lot of dinitrol or the like to keep em nice. Lanoguard or the like I’m hearing about a lot this last 12 months.

        Comment by Matt — October 29, 2021 @ 8:23 pm

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