Sunday, 29 July 2007

Somewhere on the A99 to Keiss - Slick Dick and the Tripwire

At breakfast we met another 'Jogle' family of four. Father and daughter were cycling down to Lands End in twelve days to raise money for her 'World Challenge' trip to Borneo and Mother and younger daughter were the back up team. Now I know all about World Challenge trips and gave them a few fundraising ideas. They were a really nice family, we swapped email addresses so I can see how their getting on. 'Slick' strolled in attired in his full lycra regalia, proudly announcing to all , the weather conditions at 'JOG'.

We drove the van to yesterday's finishing point and started walking back towards Keiss, plotting and planning how to knock him off his bike. Tripwire across the road? No, we didn't have any. All dancing across the middle of the road as we saw him approaching, thereby making him swerve and fall off ? To late, he was approaching at great speed "Oh, that's what I like to see! Keep up the good work!" He obviously had no intentions of pausing for a chat. Afterwards we thought of the best idea. We should have said we wanted to take his photograph as we were so impressed with his prowess. Then he would have stopped!

Walking on towards Wick, Dave was beginning to suffer a few foot problems, so the first port of call was the sockshop, where the delightfully young and good-looking Hamish sorted him out with some thick socks AND recommended an alternative route along the beach to Keiss. The only problem was the Wester river that ran down from the loch onto the beach and crossing it was dependant upon the tide. Lynne chose to stay on the road but Dave and I were up for the challenge!

It made a real change to be walking on the sand; it was exhilirating! Then we approached the was wide, it could be deep. This was turning into a spiffing "Famous Five" adventure...


"I say Dave, old bean, be a good sport, do the manly thing and cross the river first!"

"Of course, I'm a chap, I might even find that hidden treasure we've been looking for"

As I watched him sink deeper and deeper up to his thighs I thought "crikey" and rolled my shorts up as far as they would go!

"Come on old girl you can do it! It's not that frightfully difficult!"

"Can you see anything glittering between those pebbles and stones" ?

"Can't really say. It's jolly difficult keeping one's balance without looking for treasure as well!"

I slowly and carefully made my way across to the other side.

"Well done!" Said Dave slapping me heartily on the back, "Not bad for a girl, what say I treat you to some homemade fruit cake and lashings and lashings of ginger beer. I think I spotted a jolly apple cheeked farmers wife over there" I beamed with pride...

That story was true apart from the last part; there was no farmers wife and seemingly no way off this beach other than scrambling over the rocks which we did. We found the footpath but it lead back to the A99. That's not what we were looking for. The village was only a quarter of a mile ahead of us across the field, we could even see the hotel. So we ploughed through the nettles thinking "this can't be right, surely the locals would have made a path to the beach?" And of course they had. We finally stumbled across it and met Lynne (and Keith who had arrived and picked her up on route) back at the hotel.

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