Sunday, 25 July 2010

Sunday, sunday

Waved goodbye early this morning to Dan and Julia (not as early as they planned...) off on the next bit of their trip. What a lovely couple, people whom we have met through this slightly odd way of life or ours who have enriched it in no small way. As they went so early we had the room done as a team by 9ish and then a steady flow of runners went out for a 3 miler not necessarily together. Rosie went first then was caught by Toby who ran with her a little way and then when they got back Freya and I repeated the run...the dogs were surprised but pleased to go again. We avoided the rain and had a nice "Ahhhhhh" over the new chicks at Laura's house.Freya filled me in spectacularly well on the Philip Pullman book she is reading which took 1.5 miles whilst I did less well remembering all the twists and turns of my Harlan Coburn thriller. A fast and furious game of monopoly has left us all exhausted and I am slightly surprised by the previously unheard rule that the loser tidies up.....

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Catch up time

Ooops let a week slip by without an entry...I shall blame the kids...and my mother now visiting from Essex having returned Toby to us. we have had the Inveraray games blighted a bit by showers in the morning but redeemed itself in the afternoon. Garret manfully entered everything he could and won the 200m and came second in the 400m which surprised him as this has never been his distance really. The kids earned a bit more...and then a bit more at Mull two days later. The weather was boiling hot and all got caught in the sun coming home glowing...or more than glowing in Garret's case....Closer to home Dan, an American guest who stayed here before two years ago with his lovely mother, and with whom we have remained in touch visited again with new partner Julia and proposed! The ring had been sent over before hand to be held here nervously by us until we could hand it over and PHEW she said yes!! Another big run yesterday ending at Lyndsay's house for a much needed foot bath, shower and lunch. Not so relaxing as last weeks run and was 1.6 miles longer. Meanwhile Garret, Richard and Naomi cracked off a 16.7 hilly run over Lochgilphead way.

Friday, 16 July 2010

The longest long run

Interesting run this one...a planned 14 miler for Garret and Richard as part of their marathon training. No Naomi today, and if I am honest she is faster than me especially at the start so I was on my own! Planned 10am start became 10.30 and the run loomed large in my mind...the furthest I have ever run but with a get out for the first 8 miles to cut back and do less, so did I? I set off ten minutes behind the boys to enable me to take the dogs, the distance coupled with Garret's pace is too much for them and I prefer to run with them rather than solo. First problem....I wanted to listen to an audio book via a free iphone app...enter Sherlock Holmes read really badly by an American guy....did not realise that the app depended on a connection and constant downloading which was fairly ineffective in the hills round here so I ditched that and listened to repeats of " The Now Show" and "The News Quiz". Once I took the decision to enjoy the run and stop if I wanted to take photos etc things began to gel and I managed fine and dandy all the way to miles 8.5-9 when I could not remember if I had plotted the route up to the Dun Na Cuiche field or not. I nearly did go that way but in the end did not and so avoided going over the 14 miles. The Castle was shrouded in mist and being heavily photographed by Japanese tourists whom I fear I frightened considerably by looming out of the drizzle bedraggled, wet and giggling at Sandi Toksvig....Along The Avenue and homeward bound...3.5 miles to go. The dogs were still perky and despite dragging myself through brambles and low flying branches I was feeling not too bad. The Dalchenna road was as always long but the last mile came and eventually went..home and lunch, more lunch and then a bath...Yey...My longest run ever over and done in 2 1/2 hrs!

Thursday, 15 July 2010


A nice run on Tuesday night with the group, a lot of people were off last week sunning themselves or holidaying in the rain so there was a lot of catch up and admiring of tans. We managed to find a whole hour without rain which added greatly to our enjoyment. Rosie dipped out before the end but still did a few miles. I am not looking forward to a planned 14 miles tomorrow which will be the furthest I have ever gone. Methinks I will be running solo with ipod rather than struggling to match Richard and Garret. Lazy days at the moment treading water until Toby and Mum arrive next Monday. We saw the long awaited Eclipse yesterday which begged the question Jack or girls are predictably at opposite ends of this poser! rising lesson for them this am and rooms for me...the washing is intense at the moment, and then back to mucking out the library and sitting room...loooonnnnng job!!

Tuesday, 13 July 2010


I love talk and chatter, the more random the better. With folk on holiday with time to spend to chat it is the best, a meandering path that takes you to parts of their lives and experiences through funny anecdotes about them, people they know, their jobs, pets and families. You can start with what to do around here and end up a thousand miles and a thousand or more words away having covered coincidences, vets and (this is a common one) pigs! People drift in here for a day, or two, or three, or more and by the end you have an easy relationship full of both your lives to explore, they arrive a blank page to be written, read and or explained. Sometimes a glimpse is given both ways through booking e mails and a picture begins to form but it is so different from any other chat with say a family member or friend whom you know and who knows all those historical/ present day facts about you. There can be so much to say and exchange, so many lives to get a peek at which then close and flow on their way when their stay comes to an end. Some stay in touch and a new type of conversation begins, some just remain a pleasant anecdote to pass onto the next guests...a B and B Chinese whispers....and of course some guests don not wish to chat and that is absolutely fine too!!

Saturday, 10 July 2010

Bug talk...

The very best kind of guests this week...ones who not only don't mind the rain...they actively LIKE it and have much worse insects than us at home..Fantastic! Guests like that keep me going through the lows...The girls were great this morning after a slow start helping me to get the rooms sorted and the kitchen tidied etc. I rewarded them by allowing them to accompany me on a 8 mile run to Inverarary and back, they were allowed to use their bikes which meant the outward journey was fast with my poor legs twinkling along dragged by the dogs as they tried to keep up with the bikes. Homeward was slower as the girls claimed their well earned reward of an ice cream on the front at Inveraray and so the dragging slowed down big time. Girls home alone tonight with garret away to Leeds to help Peter with the Leeds house running repairs, so tuna wraps and chocolate fairy cakes for tea.

Friday, 9 July 2010

Wednesday onwards.....

Very few guests about at the beginning of the week...CURSE that football!! Still better times at the back end with a full house for more than one night...Hurrah!! Highlights of the week were seeing Howard and Myrna whom we miss during the summer months,they were as they always are and we bored them with our tales of derring Highland game doo/do?? Freya's 12th birthday was a great day with a family trip to Oban Swimming Pool where Garret and Toby (after a good games of "Two Piggies in the Middle") showed off their diving skills to a rather stunned pool...not to be outdone Freya followed with some nifty dives of her own and even Rosie got in on the act. This kicked off a spate of diving from other swimmers which was still going on as we enjoyed a cappuccino and/or a cake later. It was a sort of Mexican wave phenomenon only water based...once one person did it others followed on and the trend continued. Early start the next day and off to Glasgow to watch Shrek the Fourth 3D,some shopping and then a slightly nervous mum and Toby to the Airport for the latter to fly solo down to Stansted and the time we were home he was nearly there and is now in the land of drought and 31'plus temperatures! Rosie and I braved the weather (actually the rain halted mid afternoon)forced into a run by the necessary return of a neighbours run-away dog and then onwards to a four mile run with some speed-work...somehow feel it was not enough.

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Running with the hounds.....

A foul day that got worse at about 7pm when a valiant few met for a run turned out to be a nice one cos once you are wet you cannot get wetter and at least all the midges drowned.....
MapMyRun - View Workout Details
Rosie did a fantastic run pulled in part but definitely not all the way by one or two doggy power. she did a sprint finish when they saw Garret wait it wasn't Garret it was some kids with a football! Home again to decorate Freya's cake for tomorrow...there will be pictures but not tonight...Zzzzzzzzz

Sunday, 4 July 2010


A small run out on Friday with Naomi, Richard and Garret all of whom are marathon training and so have been building up week by week to this 13 miler...not me of course and it nearly broke me.Very slow after ten miles and not much faster once I turned for home. In fact the breeze along the front at Dalchenna nearly pushed me backwards. It was very hot and so thank goodness for my new habit of carrying and using a camel pack on long runs (and for not letting Garret carry it for me as he was, in my hour of need about a mile ahead chatting away to Richard....). Very slow but at least I am am not too sore too days later. We then had a lovely communal lunch with home made bread ready for us on our return and some mercifully un-burnt soup that i remembered I had left in the oven at mile 11 but just did not have the breath to call Toby, let along the energy to fish the phone out of my back pocket). A beautiful route though taking us over the hills to the Loch and then mainly along the Loch side (a short detour to follow the road to Argyll caravan park) to Inveraray, along the side of the golf course and through the trees to loop back home. Only a couple of miles repetition in the whole run.

The Start of the holidays and the start of the Games season....

As usual the fine weather has faltered at the start of the holidays and so the Luss Games suffered from the odd shower or two but nothing like as bad as the deluge last year. spirits undiminished and a clear eye to the cash prizes Toby took on most events including the jr heavies and wound up with £118, the girls competed too netting £30 and £16 respectively so not bad for a day out! Garret worked the hardest by far following in my footsteps from last year (not literally as he did not get lost..) by doing the local and open fell races.However his only placement was £10 in the local obstacle race and boy they worked hard for that, not as hard as the Open one which followed straight after the longest fell race....