Sunday, 30 November 2008

happy / sad / happy / sad / happy

away this weekend with friends from CVDG to mark the demise of the trailbuilding project.

happy - that a bunch of volunteers managed to deliver £120k+ of trails
sad - that a few misbehaving civil servants can derail a project and ultimately destroy a partnership that could have delivered so much
happy - that the trails are well used and in great nick, despite heavy use and little maintenance
sad - that no-one seems to give a fuck. even Ministers.
happy - that the group have remained friends and we had a great time over the weekend.

awesome weekend to be out and about in highland perthshire - very cold, a bit snowy.

met with pam/niall/daveL/carol/daveR/lisa for a bit of a wander before dinner. original plan was to get as far up schiehallion as we could before it got dark and then back down again. some late arrivals and spotting some folks on the slopes of craig varr above kinloch rannoch meant for a change of plan.

eight hardy souls set out in sub-zero temperatures and headed in the vague direction of where we thought that path was. slight fotwear issues meant that lisa and then daveR turned back. on and up. still not on a path. chasing deer (not in a bad way). quick stop for some champagne. carol, pam and sue turn back leaving daveL, niall and i to press on.

we attain the summit not long after the sun sets. a bit more champagne, breathing in the ciew, posing, down the other side and off the hill just as it gets dark. magic.

back to the hotel for a fine dinner, a few light refreshements, some idle chit-chat and before you know it, it is time for a cracking breakfast. we' head off to visit family in crieff on another unbelievably beautiful day.

viva CVDG!

more photos here.

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Saturday, 15 November 2008

time to buy a new board?

or just get sue to book me a bed in a&e?

sk8 or die in B to the I
[link back!]

Monday, 10 November 2008

over and out

with a skoosh of noxzema (sensitive, natch) and a few swipes of a derby extra in a merkur hd it was gone. gone. washed away down the drain by tears of shame.

not really. glad to see the back of the wee fucker.

yes to beards. no to moustaches.

Saturday, 8 November 2008

moustache level=torrance

think i've achieved critical mousmass

Thursday, 6 November 2008

good choice

i'm probably not alone in the tightknit group of european wishy-washy liberals in thinking america has done a good job in electing obama.

it's pretty fucking rad!

original photo from a nice collection at

Wednesday, 5 November 2008


back on it. making progress.

Sunday, 2 November 2008

hill of god

no cross race this weekend, so with a favourable forecast we were up early-ish and off on the way to take a wander up ben ledi, north of callendar. not the biggest of mountains (879m), it falls into the corbett category of scottish hills. it's position at the very southern end of the highlands means that it can be seen from all over the place - on a nice evening i can even see it as i ride home over the forth road bridge.

park car, boot up and we're on the way. it might not be that big, but it's a steep old start. up we wind through the forestry and out onto the open hill. sue was feeling the pace and after a while decided to descend back to the car. i press on and up.

it's warm work:
gloves off.
hat off.
fleece off.
sweat out.

above the snow line there's a chance to take in the vista which encompases a huge swathe of central scotland. bee-yoo-ti-ful.

up and on past the harry lawrie memorial - sgt lawrie was member of the killin mrt who was sadly killed whilst on duty in 1987 - and on to the summit. few photos and i'm heading down. skipping past folks on the steeper slopes. moving fast feels good.

had decided not to take the path off the north of the summit to stank glen and back down and just as well. sue's stubborn streak kicked in about a minute after we left each other and she'd followed me up, we meet at about 700m contour, so it's back up again past the folks i'd overtaken. "forgotten something?" they ask.

another few more summit shots, a helping of homemade peanut brittle and down again.

cycling legs are good for climbing hills, but the muscles seem ill suited for descending. a previous trip to ben ledi saw/heard me involuntary groan and grunt my way down as quads spasmed and cramped on the steeper bit. fuck knows what the group of walkers in front of us thought...

before too long we're back at the car and stripping off sweaty gear and dreaming of a late lunch. back into callendar and a quick stop at mhor fish, formerly the ben ledi cafe. the cafe is a grade a chippy and has long been a favourite stop on long and winding a84 trips. this visit doesn't disappoint and we enjoy a well earned cod supper for our efforts.

grand day out and very proud of sue for TTFUing and making the trip to the top.

more days like this please.

next up - ben vrackie?


you like carrot. you like sweet potato. you like soup. how about carrot and sweet potato soup?

onion - chopped
500g sweet potato - chopped
500g carrots - chopped
750 ml veggie stock
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tbsp curry powder

fry onions in a little oil until soft. add cumin and curry powder, continue to fry and stir for another minute or so. add carrots and sweet potato, stir a bit more to mix it all up. add stock. bring to boil, simmer for 20 minutes.

whizz, season, serve.

quite a lot of blonde

i'm really not sure i can see this through...

UPDATE: watching smokey and the bandit. all is well again, good buddies.