August 12, 2009
Wednesday 12th August Rothesay, Isle of Bute to Lamlash Harbour, Isle of Arran
Lucky Dad paid for Mum to go on the Radar Course – we needed it! For a change Mum was desperate to leave our pontoon. She was up and at them early, tea in bed for Dad and an early morning walk for me. We left in low cloud/fog. Yesterday we could see the other side of the Loch, today it had disappeared. As soon as we left the harbour we couldn’t see much and Mum was worried that two ferries run every 15 minutes so where were they? We should see at least one of them but nothing. Tracked on the radar – not a problem! The cloud lifted briefly for us to sail down to Arran and again the weather improved to the occasional shower as the weathermen would call it. I got drenched every five minutes, I do not kid. Our mooring for the night was Lamlash bay, a complete contrast to Rothesay, I need say no more.
August 11, 2009
Tuesday 11th August Tighnabruaich. West Kyle to Rothesay, Isle of Bute.
This is one island hop Mum and I could have done without. Rothesay looks lovely in Dad’s out-of-date pilot (as we found out) but what a horrible sail, yet again in torrential drizzle is the only way to describe it, and to a down and out hole of a place. If Mum didn’t know she was on the west coast, she could have believed this was the black hole of Dundee! (And that’s not being very fair to Dundee).
August 10, 2009
Monday 10th August East Loch Tarbert to Tighnabruaich. West Kyle
Another drizzly morning but it cleared up later so Mum gave in to Dad’s eagerness to go somewhere else. He promised her a look around ELT but it didn’t happen as usual – just the preverbial tying up outside the Co-op for provisions and that’s it. You can get so bored – supermarkets are exactly the same no matter which port you’re in!
Banished to the cabin, I believe Mum had a good sail. Dad seems to have got the message and is letting Mum do more things – like helming while tacking – much better! The afternoon cleared up to a lovely evening and I had a good sniff around the mainland.
August 09, 2009
Sunday 9th August Crinan Canel to East Loch Tarbert
Despite the initial drizzle, it turned out a beautiful still day. We emerged out of the Crinan to the lovely Loch Fyne, still and serene. Dad decided to fish for Mackeral (I don’t know why because the only fish he will eat is in batter!) Mum was fascinated, she’d never fished before. Dad caught 3 fish straightaway but Mum pronounced them too small so we let them go. Dad tried again, and after some tuition Mum tried herself and caught 4 fish – one escaped.
When we landed on the pontoons at East Loch Tarbert, Dad wasn’t allowed a docker – we were sent off to buy malt vinegar and rolled oats. When we got back, I was so excited at the prospect of my first taste of mackeral, I made a mistake and missed my footing and fell into the water. Mum said she was deeply suspicious that I might have been pushed, but I don’t agree. Dad’s my hero, he saved me! I didn’t know I could swim, but I couldn’t find anywhere to get out so I thought I would dive under the pontoons to the other side. Next thing I know Dad grabbed my ear and pulled me to dry land, well onto the pontoon anyway. Mum did her bit, towelled me dry, and became quite soppy, ugh! But she also gutted and cooked the mackeral for our lunch so she’s not that bad. Dad wasn’t keen but I really enjoyed it. Mackeral and Baker’s Light Chicken biscuits go really well.
August 08, 2009
Saturday 8th August Crinan Canal
We’re still here, not quite in the middle and between the Terrier packs as Dad calls them, making their way back home. Talk about bad timing! But don’t be upset for us, we enjoyed spitting in the face of those Terriers as they tried to bully us into letting them past. We made it worse for them, ha, ha. And Mum setting up the locks on her own! Respect!
I think it was very unfair of Dad to insist they had the cheap(er) menu for lunch at the Cairnbaan Hotel. Mum had worked so hard, and all he had done was stand in the cockpit! Still, I understand her lunch was nice. Skinflint!
We moored just outside the last set of locks and had a relatively peaceful night.
August 07, 2009
Friday 7th August Ardfern to Crinan Canal
Turned out to be a lovely afternoon as we went into the Crinan. I’m so glad they sent me down to the cabin. The noise was horrendous as they filled the sea lock with water. Very scary and Dad put Mum on the bow line right in the path of all that water. Nice one, Dad.
He was a bit worried that Mum wouldn’t manage the locks but luckily she met a nice old fella, who obviously knew his stuff, and showed her the right way to do it. I am very proud of Mum she managed all but four locks on her own. (There’s 15 of them with only three manned).
August 06, 2009
Thursday 6th August Ardfern Marina
Mum not happy, Dad not happy, bad weather day. Kept my paws to myself.
August 05, 2009
Wednesday 5th August Ardinamir Bay, Isle of Luing to Ardfern
Another civilised day and beautiful weather! My early morning constitutional bagged two islands, Torsa and Luing in one! Later Mum and Dad took me for a big walk on Luing. We almost walked to the village but not quite. The local hairy cattle were none too pleased to see me, very scary, but at least they had the good grace to show us the way!
Back on the water and out to Ardfern. As I said, beautiful weather but what were they doing! Bouncing me from one side of the boat to the other, and the contents of the cabin. I connected with Mum’s camera bag several times. I believe they call it tacking. I snear in the face of Dad’s chagrin, he wasn’t having a good day – bent Mum’s new boathook getting out of Ardinamir Bay (a present from Dad) and he lost the dinghy seat. I use that dinghy seat, its how I get aboard it. What was he thinking? Mega amount of shouting as the sails were brought down outside Ardfern, can’t quite understand why, but we were a bit close to the other side of the Loch.
August 04, 2009
Tuesday 4th August, Loch Feochan to Ardinamir Bay, Isle of Luing
Now that’s more civilised. Breakfasted at 9am, dinghied to shore at 10am, nice walk, bit of lunch and then off out of the Loch at 14:20. I understand the entrance was a bit narrow and as Mum had superbly navigated into the loch, it was time for Dad to have a go. I was looking forward to a bit of entertain but unfortunately it didn’t happen, not then anyway.
Sometimes its as well to invite the wrath of Dad by pointing out the ‘bleeding obvious’ because the consequences of him missing the ‘obvious’ could be much worse. And so it came to pass (Mum’s so brave) as we nearly hit the rocks and missed the channel taking us around the Isle of Torsa to Dad’s preferred anchorage at Ardinamir Bay.
August 03, 2009
Monday 3rd August Loch Feochan, Oban
Lulled into a false sense of security. Dad took me on a mega walk and then we visited the little island near our mooring to put wind up them hairy Irish/Scottish dog things lying on it. Oh I so enjoyed watching them haul their fat bodies back into the water as we got close. Obviously some of them got brave and stared us out rather than move, they were the fatter ones!
Then they left me all day!