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Camping by Loch Awe

F19585?thread=4083511&skip=0&show=20 desribes our recent night out under the stars smiley - magic Also a link to photos.

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Latest reply: May 1, 2007

Lost on a remote area!

I decided to go for a short break this weekend just passed. As i'm using up the rest of my holidays in Ireland next month i decided i would have to get my Highlands fix in the form of a weekend. So i went to explore the Arnamurchan peninsula in the far west coast. On Saturday i was quite content going for the car-owners idea of a walking holidaysmiley - winkeye trying to cover as much area as possible by car, and hopping out every time a nice view appeared, to take a photo or two. From time to time, like when i found beaches, i would go for longer explorations on foot.. (holidays up north were so much more fun before i had a car- cars induce laziness!)

Anyway, on Sunday, looking to stretch my legs a bit, i spotted a nice circular walk in the map. The first 8 or so miles would be minor road, with a final 6 mile section back to within a couple of miles of my starting point, via path. So i reached the point where the road ended and the path began, ignoring a sign warning of the sparcety of population, roughness of land, lack of phone coverage, and the general foolishness of continuing any further...

Now, i was not planning on going hill-walking. In general i don't do that stuff without someone with me who a)has a better sense of direction and danger than me, and b) Is big enough to hawl my body home if i fall off a cliff.smiley - erm

So with this in mind i was heartened to note that the path was OK really. Partly through forest and uphill, but OK. Then things went Pete Tong. The surroundings stopped bearing any resemblance to the map. There were plantations and streams and ruins, that just weren't on the map! Also the path fizzled out and dissapeared entirely in the heather, mud, and vegetation. The OS map, on the other hand, showed nothing but open ground with one single path in a straight line from the exit of the initial forest, to the entry to the final stretch of road. So basically i got horribly lost, with nightfall not too far away...

I spent over 4 hours clambering up gullies, walking through streams, climbing barbed wire topped fences, falling in mud, and skirting with the idea of cutting through woodland that wasn't on the map. Eventually i reasoned that regardless of where i was, i wanted to head south, as there was a long road running east/west that i couldn't miss if i kept on going. With the briefly visible sun, i found South (I didn't bring a compass- i wasn't planning on hillwalking- I thought this was a shortish straight path, from one road to another!) and finally saw the road. Even then, it took me another 2 hours to get to it, and a further hour back to the car once on the road. As in all the best suspense movies, just whenever i thought i was home and dry, another hurdle would appear. Usually in the form of fences, or shear cliffs...

Even when i got onto the road i underestimated how long i had to walk back to the car. I was truly and utterly knackered when i reached the car park. I was, however very, very grateful to not be sleeping on the hillside, which i thought a distinct possibilty. I didn't leave Strontian till 8ish, so it was nearly 1am before i got home. Today i am stiff, sore and tired, but nothing was broken or damaged so i'm not complaining.

Well, i've learnt what mild dispair and fear feel like, and also not to walk on anything that isn't road-like if i'm alone.

I'm rather annoyed that i missed out seeing areas i planned on visiting after my 'short walk', but apart from that, and the above, the weekend went well. Lots of photos, and some pretty good (after enhancement) long exposures of the starry sky. I was lucky enough to pick 2 nights with clear skies. The Milky way was clearly visible, and very, very spectacular. October never lets me down!

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Latest reply: Oct 30, 2006

Happier, i think!

I'm settled in my new house now, and i've just bought what i think is my last major housy purchase for now- futon type things for guests to sleep on.

Everything is in the right place and i'm mostly happy with the layout. Despite conciously trying not to accumulate too much stuff- i like that feeling of being able to pack up and leave in a day or two if necessary (not that i'm planning on doing anything that illegalsmiley - yikes but it's nice to not feel bogged down with stuff i think) One room is slightly too cluttered for my liking. Not really anywhere else to put the stuff though, so i'll live with itsmiley - smiley

This place is amazingly quiet considering i'm a 10 minute walk from Princess street and the city centre of Scotlands capital city!! it's far quieter than the village i stayed in and quieter than my last place in belfast, which was quiet at night, but had the constant screaming of playing kids all day and motorised scooter things smiley - erm

I'm assured the area is very posh, and it looks it- all historic old buildings and cobbled streets and bridges and rivers, but my rent is just about manageable. Very surprised at that. It would be a totally different story if i was to buy here though- shocking prices. But rent is only about £50-100 more per month than equivilant properties in Belfast or Glasgow.

Job-wise i'm a bit more undecided. It feels very odd to return to a company i've left, and also to find that i need to re-learn so much stuff. Products are new to me in the department i work in. i'm so used to knowing the range inside outsmiley - sadface. 9 months is a very long time to be out of the photographic trade- i'm really out of touch just now- big gaps in my knowledge. So i'm feeling a little lost job-wise.

Socially i've had a good few nights and days out so far, but that's more to do with the festival, and visiting friends from Glasgow. Unfortunately I don't know anyone here i can call up and just say 'fancy a quick pint?' to. I only know couples in the Embra area, and in general, couples require 3 weeks written notice of any socialising smiley - erm I can't be arsed with that- I need spontaniety! One of my Belfast buddies is coming over for the weekend in a few weeks, so looking forward to that smiley - magic She can try out my new futon thingssmiley - smiley

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Latest reply: Aug 20, 2006


The couple who's house I am permitted to breath in are turning nastier by the day. I asked them if the intended to repay me my deposit at end of month (to which i knew the answer) but they wouldn't answer. All i got was a snide note on my door the following day;


So i quite reasonably withheld my last months rent. If they wont give back my deposit, i'll take it back. I still however paid the £60 'expenses' i pay every month, as this wasn't part of deposit. I'm fair.

They (i usually refer to them as the kids or the Gimps) are juvenille, petty, vindictive, stingy, liers, who gain emmense pleasure from seeing other people suffer or come by misfortune. GimpF (the female) even told me with glee one day how she filled her lunch break by going to a rival shop that sells the same products she does and taking up 30mins of the salesmans time, making him think he had a sale, then when he was ready to confim things, she said-"oh my lunch break is up, got to go- bye"smiley - erm

This, she found hilarioussmiley - erm She is so bitter, twisted and warped that she can't even understand why i didn't find this story funnysmiley - huh

This, ladies and gentlemen is the kind of people i'm dealing with. Scum. Educated and relativly intellegent, but still scum. Not nice people at all. They will go out of their way to cause me inconvienience.

Another example- GimpF locked and hid the key to the shed where the washing/drying facilities are one day, just when i needed to do a wash. Just for funsmiley - erm She made up some cocand bull story about 'kids hanging around, and neighbour warning her to lock stuffsmiley - laugh (so why didn't she tell me this at the time or leave the key out?). Then when i got her brother (who she fears) to give her a good talking too, she denying that he had ever spoken to her.. i KNOW he did!

They actually think i am stupid! Later on she ran upstairs to talk about me loudly on the phone to.. (a friend maybe- not sure if she has any..) Calling me all the names under the sun, and predictably enough changing all the facts to suit her made-up version of events.

In reality, a more mature, concientious, tidy and courtious tennent you could not hope to find. I bent over backwards to carry out all their silly little rules they arbitarily imposed. And i always did more than my fair share of household duties. I would clean and put away their pots pans or dishes if they were lying around, but they wouldn't so much as put a used glass of mine into the dishwasher. Pathetic.

Trouble is in their world, THEY are the hard-done-by ones! No really. They think i'm a bad tennent, because i sometimes when it's hot have more than one shower in the day, or clash with them in the kitchen (i'm forbidden from cooking between 6-7pm, or sometimes earlier, or sometimes later depending when it suits THEM.)or make too much noise showering, or don't take all my toiletries out the bathroom (they can keep all theirs in there), or cause the bedroom door to turn yellowsmiley - laughsmiley - laugh no really!! the perfectly normal looking door, is to her, yellow- i cause dampness apparentally! Fools.

Oh they have a thing about dampness. They identified some microscopic mould particles on the bathroom ceiling (my fault). Oh yes, they "had that before and painted over it, but now i'm here it's happening faster"smiley - laughsmiley - ermsmiley - yawn

*Free rides. this is especially funny as GimpM (the male) was unemployed for the first 6months i was there. So i was paying their godam mortgage whilst he sat on his f*t ar**e doing nothing all day!

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Latest reply: Jul 7, 2006

Why have I bitten my tongue 3 times this month?!

Enough to draw blood smiley - wah
Intellegent design my ar#e- Then the part you've bitten swells, so that it becomes next to impossible not to bite it againsmiley - cross

Guess i'm on soup for the next day or twosmiley - erm

Seriously, why is my brain/ toungue/ jaw interface not co-ordinating these days- have my teeth grown?

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Latest reply: May 7, 2006

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