1 EAGLETON NOTES: Odds and Ends

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Monday, 7 August 2017

Odds and Ends

Where does time go? What's absolutely certain is that it does go and, indeed, flies. Over the last few days we've been quite busy and today Gaz took CJ and I in his Land Rover Discovery (a 4 x 4 for those who are not familiar with the vehicle) as far as a vehicle can get to the Eilean Glas Lighthouse on the Isle of Scalpay. Afterwards we tried to get lunch in Tarbert but that turned out to be an impossibility: Tarbert seems to be a suffering from its own success. Mind you the fact that we arrived at The Harris Hotel almost exactly at 2pm and were given lunch menus and drinks only to be told that the kitchen wouldn't serve us with soup even because they closed at 2pm. We left. Obviously the hotel (which I have frequented for over the 40 years I've lived here) doesn't need the custom. The other hotel was happy to serve us but there was a wait for one of the many tables. The Harris Distillery where the lunches are very good was stowed out.
These miscellaneous photos are from my/our holiday so far. The first is a sculpture at the Ralia Café on the A9 near Newtonmore where I often stop on my way to or from Glasgow.


When I was staying in the Borders my friends took me to The Hermitage Castle. Unfortunately I thought we were just going to visit friends in the village but after that we spend the afternoon out. I didn't have my camera with me and my phone ran out of battery just after we arrived at the castle. I shall definitely be back fully prepared!

On the way down the valley.


Lots of free-range porkers in the area.


I met my boss from 43 years ago and his family for lunch on the way to my brother's. Outside The Dog and Partridge near Preston (excellent lunch) this couple were enjoying a pint in the sunshine with their horse and trap.


In Chester CJ and I enjoyed some pastries at Patisserie Valerie



The hotel in Ambleside was very good and I loved the fact that I didn't have to try and fill my kettle from the tap in the bathroom  (even 4 start hotels often subject one to that inconvenience) as water was supplied.



30 comments:

  1. We gave up using horses and traps in Yorkshire during the 1920's. It's interesting to note that they remain the favoured form of transport over in Lancashire.

    P.S. Will your holiday never end?

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    1. We Lancastrians like things to move at a sedentary pace YP. My foray this week is for my three monthly Big C review to see if I'll make it for another three months. I'm hoping so because this is interrupting my holiday.

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  2. Beautiful photos, I enjoyed very single one of them. That third one though, that is the one that made me go "AHHH".

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    1. Both my companions were professional photographers and this was the view (the light was quite remarkable) that they thought was very much worth a stop and Sue took a shot and immediately put the view as her phone wallpaper.

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  3. If I had remembered your title this blog would have made more sense as I read it. So I did go back and read the title. You were seeing many interesting places.

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  4. My comment could be an exact copy of Kay's. I also very much like the pig family; it is so rare these days to see animals that are allowed to live the way they were meant to (more or less).
    What did you do for lunch then when you could not get anything to eat in Tabert?
    I am looking forward to your return to Hermitage Castle, what an intriguing place!

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    1. How strange Meike. I did a very full reply to your comment and I've just noticed that the comment has disappeared. I've also noticed that the reply to Monica has gone too. That's a major irritation. I mentioned that we drove towards Stornoway and half way home we went to the Loch Erisort Inn. It was an inn with a very chequered history over the last 40 years but the current owners seem to have turned it around and we had e lovely lunch. I would certainly make the effort to go there again.As for the Hermitage Castle I shall certainly return with my 'proper' camera and do a full post.

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  5. Pigs here are just the same but the thought police visit regularly. There is a special phrase that rids them quicksticks.
    Good luck at t'ospital.

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    1. Thanks Adrian. There were more 'free range' pigs there than I've seen anywhere and they looked genuinely happy (if one can measure pig happiness in squeals of delight).

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    2. Graham, pigs grunt with delight and squeal in alarm or excitement. The ones here do anyway.

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    3. I stand corrected Adrian. Had I thought about it I would probably still have used the term 'squeals of delight' because 'grunts of delight' just sounds strange.

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  6. Love that castle and the view below it! Hope you managed to find some food eventually. On our recent trip I put in some effort beforehand to research openings hours & such. Had some luck as well though (as we did not actually book tables in advance). Only one evening did we have to "chase" food (and ended up at a pizza place which also served salads, and the only thing wrong with it was really that I ended up having to leave 3/4 of mine because the portions were enormous).

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    1. Monica I would never have anticipated a need to book lunch in advance. In fact I'm not sure that, apart from the bistro on Scalpay which is very small, it would be possible. (Dinners are, of course, a different matter.) As for the castle I shall return!

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  7. A wonderful array of photos...a joy to see.

    And those pastries look very tempting!!

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    1. Thanks Lee. I don't have a particularly sweet tooth. I do have a romantic desire for chocolate eclairs. Unfortunately they never live up to my childhood memories.

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  8. Beautiful photos and post. Your vacation looks wonderful.
    The Hermitage Castle is charming, has a solid feel about it photo wise.

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    1. Maywyn I shall return one day to do the Hermitage Castle justice. It was splendid. The vacation was, indeed, wonderful.

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  9. Love the Heilan coo. And the hexagonal cafe.

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    1. Violet Sky I was so busy photographing the Heilan Coo that I didn't think about the café. It is my 'must stop' place winter and summer on my journey between Lewis and Glasgow (or wherever south I am travelling). It is called the Ralia Café and I first blogged about it in 2008.

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  10. That a great collection of photos of your out and about-ing. Love the sculpture in the first shot. That would look good out in my house paddock. The landscape of "down the valley" looks like a painting and as for the pastries - best not to linger too long there. I look forward to your return to the castle and hope everything went well at the hospital.

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    1. Thanks Pauline. I return home on Friday and an email will be on its way shortly.

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  11. Is it wrong of me to be just a little cheered by the fact that I am not the only person completely frustrated by the UK's penchant for closing eating establishments at precisely the moment that people want lunch? I spent two weeks (back in the 1980s) traipsing around Scotland, trying to get someone to serve me food in the middle of the day. I did succeed a few times, when people took pity on me and went back in the kitchen and built me a sandwich... but I felt distinctly "in the way". I tried to figure out how people who live there full time get through the day without lunch. I suppose they carry a packet of peanuts in their pocket, or a picnic basket in the car?

    Awesome photos, btw! Hoping for an "all clear" on the health front!!

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    1. Things have improved over the years Mrs S and the problem here was the fact that everywhere was totally stowed out with tourists all having lunch. The poor service at the Harris Hotel was regrettable ( I stll have to do my Trip Advisor review) but had we been 2 minutes earlier we would have had lunch. As it was I think we did rather better at the Loch Erisort Inn. A 'health' email will follow asap.

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  12. Photo No. 7 was the best, licking my chops as I write. We get what I think they call Creme Pat. here in France and not a lot of the good stuff in cakes. Mind you with weight, cholesterol reduction and diabetis to contend with we have to give all but the black coffee a miss.

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    1. Ah Potty my childhood love of chocolate eclairs is regularly re-kindled at The Patisserie Valerie in Chester but the eclairs are never quiet what I recall from my childhood. Fortunately as my BMI borders on the minimum for my height that aspect of them is not a problem for me.

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  13. I think chocolate eclairs are mostly disappointing but the other pastries look scrumptious!
    Was about to say more but I'm being called to dinner....

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    1. Kylie you reminded me of a strange saying of my Dad "You can call me anything, except late for my dinner."

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  14. Looks like you are having a nice trip. You sure are finding some good food places. It does make you mad when establishments say the kitchen is closed.

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    1. Thanks Diane. It's been a very good trip one way and another. It makes me even madder when they have already given us menus!

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