ABOUT ME

I live in a camper van with a couple of West Highland Terriers for company.
My passion is photography but it is a work in progress.
I am always willing to share what knowledge I have and can be contacted through the comments on this post or e-mail ADRIAN
ALL IMAGES WILL ENLARGE WITH A LEFT CLICK

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

MY FIRST DAY. (11/06/13)

I still have internet despite having moved from the east to the west coast of Lewis. I’m at a village called Shawbost. The camp site is just behind a big new school. I’m not a fan of tiny people but it is great to see them as a representation of a thriving community.

Things are very different here. I found the filling station, rifle shop, food shop, map shop this morning with no bother at all….Thank you Graham. The girl selling, petrol diesel and maps, she was short of two maps OS458 and OS456. She said not to worry. They only show the standing stones and a beech and both have a sign post. I had to admire her pragmatism. I asked if she had a Daily Telegraph. No but we may have about five o’clock this afternoon. The Telegraph doesn’t always come though.

I didn’t need a food shop as Stornoway now has a CO-OP superstore and a Tesco. I used the CO-OP cos Tesco crapped on Keith. There is another difference up here. One has to shop after ten in a morning if you want to include Bells on the cart. It’s the Wee Frees. They don’t allow laundry or grass cutting or pretty much anything else on a Sunday and selling alcoholic beverages is something they’d like to see banned. I must admit to being fascinated enough to catch a service this Sunday. I’ll have to look out a pair of trousers, a shirt and tie and give it a whirl.

_V0G6857

_V0G6856   The views from the van.

We went a walk to try and get to the sea.

_V0G6851   I could see it but couldn’t find a way to it.

_V0G6853  On we wandered. The dogs found a friend. He came on our walk with us. I let my two off as there is little traffic and what there is slows down to walking pace. They had a good run.

_V0G6854  He’s still with us half a mile later. This is something I find different. You have small croft cottages and impressive houses like this one abandoned. People then just build a new bungalow to live in. There must be method in such madness but so far it escapes me.

_V0G6852    A stack of peats. This is winter fuel. It burns like wet cardboard but with a much more pungent aroma.

Tomorrow we are moving to a posh beach with dancing girls, all manner of Divers and Waders and miles of perfect sand.

I love moving around. The folk at the site are great. The toilet block is called Downing Street. The Ladies is number ten and the Gents number eleven. I’d love to have a dump in both.

See you again when I can get online.

50 comments:

  1. je zou daar toch mogen wonen wat een omgeving.

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    1. Niet leven, maar het is anders.

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  2. Lots of empty space to explore there Adrian, although most of it seems to be fenced in?....what are they trying to protect?

    Some nice houses too, are they not used at all?

    Good luck with all those 'birds' on the beach tomorrow!

    And as for your last request...I'm afraid you're too late!...both of those residencies are full to the brim and overflowing at the moment..and getting more and more putrid by the day!! Ooohh! I must be careful what I say the spooks could be reading this, I might get my wrists slapped!!...[;o)

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    1. Trevor, there are no footpaths or public rights of way in Scotland. You can wander where you want but they are awful keen on fencing one out. There is no law of trespass. So if I want to lift a couple of dogs over three strands of barbed wire I can. The dogs have to be good though and so do I. It's different.

      No it is something that is prevalent in Scotland once one gets out of the Central A9 corridor. They seem to ditch old buildings and build new. I find it hard to comprehend.

      There's enough crap in both those residences to make my contribution superfluous.

      Don't worry I say much worse things and what is more if Samantha played her cards right I may even vote for Dithery. Dithery Dave the non statesman.

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  3. Enjoy your holiday. By the end of the month we'll go from camping holidays to see the sea :))
    A hug.

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    1. Laura, it's not a holiday it is a way of life. I hope you decide on a Fireblade for your next holiday.

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    2. PS. Laura, if you can't afford a new Blade then get the 1997 version. OH! Get a set of heavy duty leathers, kevlar two skin minimum, air bags wouldn't be over egging the job. No steering dampers on a Fireblade. They don't need them but they is little devils for chucking one off.

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  4. Judging from them images Adrian I can't help thinking Merlin's and Short-Eared Owls, keep them eyes peeled! Lewis reminds on Jersey were until recent time you weren't allowed to dance on Sunday.

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    1. Will do Douglas. I had hooded Crows next to the van. It's amazing how many different birds you have in an urban environment. In the wilds they spread out. I like the wilds.

      Dancing six days a week!....You lucky devils. Up here it's only allowed on a feast day.

      PS. I've only seen Merlin high up. Feeding on Grouse chicks.

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  5. Many of the houses you see have been abandoned because they were made with poured concrete and do not conform to any modern insulation and other building standards. It is generally much cheaper to build new than try and modernise existing houses.

    The fences delineate the crofts and keep your sheep from straying and other people's from eating your grass. Well that was the case when there were sheep on every croft. Now they are few and far between and many fences are no longer maintained.

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    1. Thanks Graham,
      I'm not at all disappointed. I'm just trying to get my head round a feeling of newness. I expected oldness. The island is humming.
      I read and remember your post on farming fences.

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  6. Jeez, I'm so envious Adrian. That's how life should be.
    I look forward to seeing more pictures of heaven.

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    1. Keith, it is very different. The people are great and the ones I've met all have time for a chat. I drove here across a landscape of moorland that would look good in Yorkshire.

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  7. Good to see everything appears to be going to plan there.

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    1. John, there isn't a plan, without a plan I can't fail to meet targets or expectations.

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  8. That is a lovely way to live , when you have had enough, move on great post as ever look foward to the next one.

    peter

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    1. It takes some beating Peter. Stress levels are low.

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  9. Oh, you're on Lewis! I must have missed a post or two... (will click my way back) How interesting to get to see it from your point of view.

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    1. Monica, yes I'm in Clan Edwards land.

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  10. It's to bad about the buildings being abandoned. Foam insulation would make it much easier to insulate, also much cheaper. Love your wanderings and photos. Take care on your walks.

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    1. Horst, it was much worse years ago when half the Scots were bundled up and sent to the Americas.

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  11. My kind of place Adrian... looking forward to seeing and reading more.

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    1. Andrew, I'm thinking of extending my stay. It's all so different.

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  12. You couldn't have found worse views if you had tried. The natives are very friendly, there are many, many social gatherings where all are welcome and the weather has been just glorious. So from an English Incomer who spent 60 years down on the south coast of England,I would say "Come on Adrian - you usually take cracking pictures - so how about taking some "real" beautiful and magical views of this lovely island?"

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    1. Spesh, I deserve the ticking off. The views from yesterday were much worse. Have you been to Laxdale?
      It takes me a while to settle enough to use a camera. I'll buck up and get my bum in gear.

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    2. Have I been to Laxdale? No - you don't go to Laxdale - you just go through it to somewhere else.

      I hope your second day will be better. Try going up the B895 via Coll and Gress to Glen Tolsta. Now Glen Tolsta is fantastic. Keep oing to the end of the road and uou will reach the Bridge to Nowhere - there is then a track that goes around the coast - just beautiful. Before then on the main road there is Big Beach and Garry Sands - real treats to see. My dog just loves those beaches. Shell sand, machair with millions of wild flowers......... I think you will guess that I thhin the island is paradise! Looking forward to seeing some of your wonderful pictures.

      PS There is a car park for you to use very easily at both Garry Sands and Big Beach. Enjoy your day.

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    3. Spesh, I'll head up the east coast tomorrow. Assuming I don't fall foul of a super sufficiency of wine. I'm at the headquarters of Clan Edwards.
      The light is very flat. I'll try and give it a kick.

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    4. Ha. Ha. Graham is extremely hospitable, as we know to our cost.
      If I hear groans coming from your camper tomorrow morning - I can see it across the valley from my house - I will assume you had a very good night! Whatever the weather tomorrow, you will see some fantastic views. Enjoy.

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    5. Spesh, what bit of ones body does one groan out of? Oh my! I'm having a day off. I'm really off today. You should have popped over, I'm too old to drink Lewis dry on my own. I've noted your venues and set off this morning with the best of intentions but I was just too frail. I'll do them after Harris.

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  13. Belas fotografias...Espectacular....
    Cumprimentos

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  14. There is certainly beauty in the barren landscape. I'm curious as to why there was no landscaping done around the houses.

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    1. Red, there are gardens but it's not a popular pastime.

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  15. Adrian, for those of us who will never get the opportunity to actually see where you are traveling, these photos of the sites are almost like being there. Please keep them coming.

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    1. I will do. The landscape changes quickly here. You may have to wait a while as internet is patchy.

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  16. HI Adrian...Wow looks pretty flat there,and sure has fences!!
    What a nice feel to the open space, and the smell of the sea must be present too!!
    If you get all spiffed up and head to church we will need a photo
    of you!! ; )
    Grace

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    1. Grace, if you think I'm heading off to church with a spliff on then think again. I'd be banished to the colonies and you don't want me over there with you.

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  17. Hi Adrain It looks lovely and peaceful there and the dogs are in their element. I think it is a good idea nt to have Sunday like all of the other days. We managed in the past without shops etc open and it is good to have a rest day for everyone(were possible) Margaret

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    1. Margaret, Sunday should be special. It should be a day to reflect on the week passed and contemplate the week to come.

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  18. It'd good to see the place through someone else's lens, although I don't think you have impressed Spesh. Sounds like you better consult the locals! I like the big skies!

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    1. Pauline, Spesh has a point. There are disadvantages in using a 25mm lens. I'll switch to a 135mm. I've only had four conversations with locals and they take an awful lot of the day up. I don't rush but do have a lingering sense of urgency.

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  19. Sorry you did't foud the sea...
    But you got a "new friend"!
    I like those houses...and the "stack of peats" is very interesting!

    Hugs
    BlueShell
    blueshell.azurara.net
    (I had to quit Blogger because I was having a bunch of anonymous offensive comments)

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    1. Blue Shell, just disallow anonymous comments. I'll find the sea, not to worry.

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  20. Wow, Adrian, you are in the middle of nowhere. Why not move into that abandoned house for a while and heat it with some of the peat you found.Looking forward to the dancing girls.

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    1. Wilbo, I'm in the middle of lots of somewheres. There are vast tracts of nowhere to stop in but it's been a bit wet and dark.

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  21. I love your pictures of Lewis, somewhere I would like to go. It made me laugh, dumped on those numbers, ha ha ha.

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    1. Cheers Bob, It is different and far from unpleasant. When i get my thinking head on I'll get some proper pictures. my ablutions were very rewarding.

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  22. Glad you're doing fine and it looks like some pasture land you've visited.

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    1. It's a feudal sort of place Maria. I had it all explained to me but unfortunately it was explained to me whilst I was suffering from a super sufficiency of fine wine. I must admit to being no wiser.

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    2. I'm sure you know what wise is; it's just that maybe life isn't meant to live up to definitions and conceptions.

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