In case you were wondering why it's been a bit quiet on here lately, I've just come back from a week's camping trip in Scotland. No electricity and no internet.
I have to say, when I saw the car all loaded up, that instead of "getting away from it all", we seemed to be taking most of it with us. The Cog insisted on taking garden deckchairs, which are very comfy but not very compact. The first campsite was just north of Loch Lomond - it had a waterfall at the back of it (and one on the other side of the valley, too) which was very pleasant to listen to at night.
We spent a miserably wet day looking around the castle in Stirling - the prison tour (separate building) was far more interesting, hosted as it was by a guide who changed his character with the timeline. Must remember nothing happens in Scotland before noon on a Sunday, it was like a ghost town. We visited Oban and the beach at Ganavan - so windy, I could hold the windbreak up without my hands! We drove through Glen Coe and stopped off at Fort William and Inverness, and then camped for three nights on the outskirts of Aberdeen. It was a campsite given over mostly to statics and caravans, but with a very nice inn next door that did excellent food. We found a sheltered sand dune on Balmedie beach to sit behind (still very windy), and visited the Glen Fiddich whisky distillery in Dufftown. Found some interesting shops in Inverurie - they seem to go in for a lot more local/organic produce up there. Got my hair cut in Aberdeen. Decided to come home early as we hadn't managed to book a campsite near Edinburgh and wouldn't really have had enough time there to do it justice. Drive home was tedious - ended up getting off the M6 at J16 (Nantwich!) and cutting east across country for the M1, which did not have snarl ups and jack-knifed caravans on it. Highlight of the journey was visiting Tebay services, where they have a fantastic little shop (local/organic again) and even a dog-walking route!
Thomas seems very pleased to see us, although he spent a good few hours out in the rain today reacquainting himself with his favourite bushes. I didn't get much knitting done, as it spent most of the week at the bottom of my rucksack getting damp. Discovered a mistake in the Blusa and had to frog back about ten rounds of the cuff (the trip home allowed me to catch up again though). Managed to read three books whilst away - "Bollocks to Alton Towers" being the funniest, all about offbeat places to visit in the UK. Must put it on my wishlist!
Oh, and got bitten loads by the midges, despite applying tea-tree. I taste good to the local insect population, wherever I travel. Luckily these are not as bad as mozzie bites and are going down fast.