Tuesday 19th May

Awake at 0630

Grey and still
My, how they snore!
In harmony! woke me up three times.
Charging my phone overnight has had no effect.
I wonder if I brought the wrong cable?
Dead as dead so there will be no pictures till its fixed
Add ‘something’ to this morning’s shopping list.
Walk this morning is a ‘stroll’ up the east side of Loch Long, through Bundalloch.
A different name for what seems to be the same village
Settlement string out here along the banks of Lochs
No definition of what is which and who is where.
Everyone leaves everything everywhere
Bikes. tyres
Cement mixers and fishing pots
Boats, kit and garden furniture
Add Curlew to this list
Now 61
A colony of Common Gulls on the island over there
So good to see
So good to get to know
They flight light and call distinctly
Spend time just watching as a Heron comes too close
The gulls defend.
And Common Sandpipers by the dozen, everywhere.
Their piping call, their flicking flight
We have them in the Park at home, but this is where they live
(And against the running stream that feeds the loch
They disappear
Their freeze-frame flight and bobbing gait making them
Invisible on the rocks.)
before that two Mergansers flying off – another tick
Wigwam holidays
My God they’re small!
And new – two cabins that were not
Here a year ago.
Village fading out.
And by this knackered barn?
Two Twite for sure
Confirms I got the call right yesterday.
Not bad after thirty years
Campers in this soggy field
A tent beside another new machine
Angletech recumbent tandem, doncha know!
The boulder stream stream is now 15ft wide
Leading up a classic V-shaped valley
Rocky crags on either side
Walk with me
Take my hand
Take my lead and take a chance
And walk with me
Rocks, mud, sand, bog
The River Glennan takes us east
But after 2km its pissing down and I am cold.
Lets watch these Willow Warblers
In this birch tree on the bank
And turn for home
Heather, primrose
Moss and ancient fern
A cliff face scarred with knife-stroke ravines and gullies
Geography in action
Take too the micro-view and see these tiny pink flowers
Day flying Mountain moths
Even in this bastard driving rain
Toast and porridge
Half past eight
Hands colder than I realised
Did you know that you can use
A light fitting to hold a boiled egg?
Anyway – shopping
Co-op in the Kyle
Can I get an in-car phone charger in this hardward store
No – try the chemist
And it works
After a quick jiggle of the battery
So off to Applecross in Wester Ross
Why does the map show a green area defined by a line of longitude?
How does that work?
Some historic agreement perhaps.
Loch Carron via
Plockton and a narrow winding road
Alongside a railway line that I can touch.
From here (and all the Eider)
Can you believe it is
Already half past twelve
As we ascend the hairpins up the Pass Of the Cattle
Bealach na Baa in Scottish Gaelic
Just like what is writ on all the signs.
And we are overtaken on the way up by Tesco Direct
Yes really
Snow in fissures
Vertical granite
1 in 3 and wind like you have never seen.
Sharing the massive views to east and west with Japanese
And this time the Swiss chapter of shiny HD bikers
The top is wild
Humbling, ancient
And bloody cold
Views over to Raasay and Skye
The Cuillin ridge far off picked out in sun
More Buzzards
Yes they’re buzzards
People see buzzards and think that they are eagles
But no one sees an eagle
And thinks it’s a buzzard…
Monty Hall’s Great Escape
Where they took great care not to show
The great big house just yards from his ‘remote’ cabin
European TV tourists
Passing faces
Passing Places
Overloaded pub
Over priced food, but loads of beers
It’s when I sit and eat in places
Like this that it gets me
And pot of tea will do
And I can stare ‘re-mosely’ into the warming cup
My heavy longing heart
Sees a girl with legs over there
A silly bobble hat and shades
She writes and smiles and looks across the bay
But it’s just not the same
We walk from the village on a km circular route that leads
Past the Loch-with-no-birds
Where there is a hide (I might have guessed)
Farmland and a dark pine wood, not harvested but old
Silent and spooky
Into an ancient, stunted glade that looks like it should be
Where fairies are
Home farm Hebridean barn renovation complex
One for the visitor guide
Spring is later here
I stop to gaze
To stroke a beech leaf
Thoughts of you
And I’m lost in the line of white light that picks out
The island from the sea…
Wee Highland cattle babbies
Cute as fuck
There are only two houses on Rona
They leave you for a week and you have to take all that you need
And catch the rest
Let’s leave early so that we have time
To go up and round the top
Past Cuaig there’s a million lochens
Tiny little ponds set in the moor
Black-throated Diver
Stop the car!
There’s two and I creep up on them
Lie down and watch behind this rock
Smiles all round – a must have bird.
Absolutely superb.
But its bleak now
The Applecross Smoke House Fishery on the east coast
Loch Sheildaig where Tony’s lunch was farmed
The ‘Teal’ Bridge (64) and back and back
It takes for ever
Why is everything so big and far
Look, there’s A DOCk at Ardarroch in Loch Kishorn
One of the deepest fjords in the world
Where they make North Sea Oil Platforms
It’s raining
Are we nearly home yet…?
Feels like hours
I’ll cook (again) shall I?
Just drop me at the cottage and walk back to the Clachan
if you like
(They like)
Within a minute T was running back inside
Waving “Eagle! Eagle!!”
It was pouring down and I ran out
But it was gone
Briefly up over the village – one of the local birds
I’ll have to add to to the List
But oooh, it hurts
There is nothing worse than
Other People’s Birds
Later, after nine, we walk, to the Village hall to view
The picturesque castle lighting up
The loch is still
Grey glass and lovely
Sedge Warbler
And 9 text messages – the first I’ve had all day
So something’s worked
Late night Ledaig, dominoes and Jura
And whose idea was it
To buy this St Agur?

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