Monday, 12 September 2011

In the country...

We - Julie and I - were off for one of your away weekends this week, off up to Oban (well, nearly) to stay at the Brander Lodge Hotel.  The hotel was lovely, with great food - I for one appreciate a place which serves what amounts to a very posh fry-up on massive plates, with every inch covered by Stornoway black pudding and locally produced bacon and sausages and eggs - and really, really friendly staff.  We did our usual thing of going to somewhere nearby, along the fabulous coast road, and then pottering about in an aimless sort of fashion, stopping to drink coffee, eat ice cream and check out the shops.  Julie failed in her quest for a 'bamboo mitt' but since she wasn't entirely sure what one was, that's hardly surprising.  I meanwhile - and for the first time in our marriage - bought fewer books than she did.

Next day we took a tour down Cruachan - a hollowed out section of a near Munro sized mountain, a mile deep, in which a reversible drop head power generator (or something like that - basically they drop tons of water from the corrie at the top of the mountain down long pipes to strike a dynamo or whatever, which generates electricity, and then they suck the water back up and do it again).  Hence the whole place is called the 'hollow mountain'.  Worth the £6 a head to get in and our guide - a history teacher between jobs, which makes me glad I never went into teaching - was very good.  Oddly the underground area - 2/3 of a mile down - smells exactly like the ET Ride at Universal in Florida.

We stopped off for lunch in Callander on the way back.  It was pouring with rain which meant - for the first time I've ever seen - it was quiet enough to wander roudn the little shops and I ended up buying a mad looking Star Trek novel and a romance set in 15th century Venice.

And so home to start re-watching Life on Mars/Ashes to Ashes, ahving had our interests re-awakened by listening to the great 80s soundtrack to the latter on the drive home.

'Do you remember a guy was here...'

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