Life at the end of the road

August 31, 2020

He’s gone!!!!!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 8:12 pm

A bonny, bonny Monday behind me and just about to settle down on my first meal alone in a long while, a baked aubergine and courgette affair  with some passed their ‘use before’ date fish cakes I picked up on Friday night. I was passing the Co op in too much pain to carry more than two pots of yoghurt and 4lts of milk and grabbed them on the way to the till along with a frozen pizza. Not my normal fare but Ross was gonna be out all night and I wouldn’t be in until 20:00, too tired and sore to be cooking. The pizza I demolished when I got home with a tomato salad, the fish cakes have been sat in my fridge since, their orange ‘sale’ label conveniently hiding both ‘use by’ and ingredients labels. The ‘use by’ date thing has never bothered my septic tank like stomach, if the packet isn’t ‘blown’ and if it don’t smell and you cook it hot enough it’s fine. Well, it is for me and I’ve only ever poisoned myself once or twice and never seriously Smile As for the ingredients I didn’t want to know, the ‘large print’ said sweet potato and chili fish cake, the small print probably said basa fish from the Mekong Delta and I’ve already had the misfortune of Googling that after eating one Smile Anyway, it actually pretty good with the baked veg which was just sliced and brushed with olive oil and salt.

This weekend I gained a Land Rover and lost a son Sad smile my ‘boy’ whom I’d shared a most enjoyable ‘Lockdown’ with departing on Sunday morning in the Subaru.

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The car being needed as he’d an advanced diving course booked for next weekend and scuba diving not being very conducive with public transport. Normally a car in Edinburgh being a complete PITA and parking ticket magnet. His flat is only ten minutes walk from the city centre, twenty minutes from uni and almost next door to a Lidl, what more do you need Smile 

To console ourselves his mum and I went for a good walk out of Inverarish with the dugs.

Starting off at the ‘Emigrants Trail’

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which is looking decidedly greener than last I saw it, having gained some pampas grass amongst other things Smile

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The Inverarish burn sporting some wee brown trout Smile

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The ‘Burma Road’ a few large healthy chanterelles. We branched off at the remains of one of the iron ore mine viaducts with the intention of following the line of the narrow gauge railway to the old pier. The walk up towards the embankment providing a pure assault on the senses with the late summer fragrance of heather reminiscent of the late Johnny Ferguson’s honey, their diet being almost exclusively the purple blossom.

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Here is what appears to be a junction in the railway line between mine 1 and mine 2?

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A building that I guess housed some of the hauling gear.

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Hallaig passes the Penfold rock buoy on her way home.

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Another one of the hauler houses above the old Iron ore pier.

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Remains of the five kiln bases and the gantry supports for the railway. The kilns were removed during WWII and at least three of them were in use at Lingdale in Cleveland https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lingdale until 1969.

 

This line drawing of the Calcining Kilns and materials hoist at Lingdale mine gives a true impression of their size. Eric Johnson informs the Archive: ”This drawing of the calcining kilns and materials hoist, shows the three kilns which were originally on the island of RAASAY in the Inner Hebrides; dismantled in about 1943, each part carefully numbered and loaded into ships. One local man John MacLeod was killed in the hold when the sling broke. The kilns were taken to Lingdale and re-erected shortly afterwards.” Image courtesy of Joan Webster and thanks to Eric Johnson for the update.

http://www.image-archive.org.uk/?cat=11&paged=35

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The old engineering workshop and ore hopper just behind the pier.

Iron ore

http://geoscenic.bgs.ac.uk/asset-bank/action/viewAsset?id=1343&index=4&total=16&view=viewSearchItem

Out for dinner

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A wander along the road back to town concluded the walk and wee dug and I headed home whereupon I went out without Molly but with one of her (clean and unscented) pooh bags to collect part of dinner Smile Molly was pure wrecked after the earlier trek and I could find a mesh bag. You should always use a mesh bag or basket for collecting ‘shrooms to spread the pores Winking smile

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I managed a good bag of chanterelles and one nice cep ‘the girls’ catching half a dozen fresh mackerel.

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Grilled mackerel with a tomato sauce and eggs,  fresh figs for desert, don’t think I’ve ever had a fresh fig before Smile Boodly awesome and I wobbled back home around 22:00 Smile

October 17, 2018

Floating my boat :-)

Home at last, it’s been a great docking but there’s nothing like home and a whole month off ahead of me.

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Storm Callum had left a broken whirligig in his wake but aside from that, a few less leaves on the trees and a scattering of misplaced buckets and plant pots, all seemed well.

Hallaig and Isle of Arran out Loch Dunvegan in

I would have got something ‘down on paper’ so to speak on Monday and Tuesday but Monday was a late one and yesterday I was driving through the night to get to Sconser. Like Sunday, Monday was a ‘pure peach’, just as well cos it was the day we ‘came out’ to let the Dunvegan in.

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It was ‘all go’ from our start at 8:00am with the sludge tanker ready to empty our ‘bilge holding’ and ‘dirty oil’ tanks.

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We received the ultimate complement off the tanker driver and sucker man who both said that our bilges were the cleanest they had ever seen on a CalMac ship. Mind you, I had spent the best part of two days cleaning them it should have been no surprise.

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No wonder I was mightily miffed when the service engineers from Tyco dumped a couple more hundred litres of water in them testing the various sprinkler systems Smile Still, at least they did the mess room ones into a bin and they did ask if it was OK Smile

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The upholsterers finished covering the lounge seating in a much more practical material.

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By early afternoon the dock flooding began and I got on with preparing the ship to sail, shutting and opening valves to let fuel into the generators and keep the sea out of the ship.

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As soon as we had water around the generator ‘box coolers’ I fired them up one at a time checking fuel pressures and temperatures constantly until I was happy all was rosy. Once we are floating and clear of the blocks we got the OK to start the drives.

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Unlike a regular propeller, the Voith Schneider unit turns constantly, even when the vessel is stopped so it’s important there are no blocks or debris in the dock to foul them.

Those are on the Striven, there are only 4 and they are smaller than Hallaig’s.

Boodly amazing things hey.

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As Arran and Hallaig prepared to leave Dunvegan arrived just astern of the fisheries research ship Alba na Mara that was heading for her berth next door in the James Watt dock.

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We came out under our own steam but Arran had a tug either end.

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The Bruiser and Battler pulling and steering her through the narrow entrance to the wet dock ahead of us.

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There wasn’t a lot of room to play with and the masters of all three vessels did a fine job.

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As soon as we were out Dunvegan went in under her own steam

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The dock gates and their hydraulic power pack.

It was a ‘late one’ on Monday with not much time for taking pictures but here’s Loch Dunvegan looking mightily small in the 200m long dock Smile

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Here’s the Border Force ‘Big Rib’ heading for her berth too.

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Back to Rainbows

So, that was it, I finally got home this morning to a newly decorated hallway Smile It grows on you Smile To be honest, I was so glad to be home I’d have liked anything Smile

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