When getting away from it all catches up with you

My darlin’ and I decided at the very last moment to go away for a couple of days last week, we were both coming to the end of our holidays with nothing much to show for it so off we went.

Our first post of call was Inverness by way of the infamous A9 road and it was here that I learned of the true meaning of the word Furstration or should it be Frus-straight-ion?

Have you ever noticed that when you need to over take the vehicle in front there is nothing coming when you are on a bend yet every time the straights come up there is always another vehicle coming towards you?

The road does have a bad reputation, it’s true there is nothing wrong with the road it is just that the two types of road users, which are incompatible with each other. Those that are in no hurry to go anywhere and are smitten by the scenery and those that have seen the scenery many times before and would like to get to Inverness (and beyond) with the minimum of delay.

Arriving in Inverness we discover that our preferred hotel was fully booked, so we decided to head to Ullapool on the west coast for a fish supper and possibly the best white pudding supper ever made (my darlin’s opinion there)  only to find that there was no accommodation to be had anywhere in the village. So we venture northwards finding B&Bs with the NO VACANCIES signs or worst still that some has just pipped you to the post and they have not got around to taking the NO part off their signs.

We eventually end up in Durness, which is as far north as you can go and still no where to stay and the unpleasant prospect of spending a night in the car. It was beginning to feel like the Mary and Joseph Syndrome – just no at any Inns anywhere!

We found somewhere for the night in the village of Tongue a further 20 miles down the road.

I had forgotten about one little thing, one little detail that makes life in the Highlands sheer Hell – the bloody midgies.

These creatures swarmed over us as soon as we got out of the car and were still attacking us when we got to our room and guess who forgot to bring the Skin so Soft out of the car?

No not me, I don’t use that girlie stuff…. well I didn’t…

The following day dawned as dreich as it gets but this time we were ready, liberally dosed with the aforementioned girlie stuff we ventured forth back to Durness and one of my childhood haunts. I have got lots of happy memories of holidays here and it was nice to see the place again, just a pity that the weather was not all that great and there wasn’t much time to go properly exploring. maybe another day. After all the last time that I was in Durness, was the week that Chernobyl went up and that was in April 1986, so there’s plenty of time!

I’ll need to go back as I had remembered something while were were there, something that I would like to see and could not find it but that for another day. If you like a challenge then try to connect HMS Hood with the area and you’ll know what I was looking for. It turned out that I was looking in the wrong place but again another excuse to go back.


As far as the pictures go they were all shot using the G10 . The low cloud was totally uninspiring so HDR seemed to be the best way forward and monochrome seemed to fit the mood of the day.

Balnakiel Bay

The Laird’s House, Balnakiel, Dunress.

The Laird’s House and old mill, Balnakiel, Dunress.

Balnakeil Church


Ben Hope.

Ben Loyal from the causeway.

This one was formed part of a larger picture and then I realised the skyline was the most important part of the picture.


Dun Dornaigil Broch

Brochs were round double walled fortified tower houses. This one dates from between 2,300 to 1,900 BC.  It is though that the owners must have been well to do as it is unusual to have a triangular shaped lintel stone over the entrance.

Bothy, Portvasgo


The Lost Fleet, Portvasgo


Talmine harbour


Shattered Hope 1, Talmine

Shattered Hope 2, Talmine

Shattered Hope 3, Talmine

So there we have it…



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