Monday 12 April
I was impressed that I didn’t send the car careering off the winding Altbea road down the long drop into Loch Ewe.
Yes, it was an eagle. God knows which variety, but the long “fingers” at the wingtips gave the overall species away.
In the back of the “Tank” The Fatdog appeared to be in some alarm as the Santa Fe lurched from side to side, its distracted driver attempting to glimpse the big “burd” that had suddenly risen from behind a rocky outcrop at the side of the road.
For a millisecond I was so close I could damn near see the whites of its eyes – or could have if I hadn’t been so determined to check out the ends of its wings for those telltale “fingers”. Never mind, I’ll be driving that road for a few days yet. Lots of time to defy death and get a better view.
The eagle was probably the highlight of today. The glorious weather of the weekend had given way to grey cloudy skies with only a hint that there might be some sunny salvation later in the day. As it turned out we would only see that touch of blue on our way back to the cottage.
The cottage seemed empty. For the past couple of days it had been a busy place with not only J, me and The Fatdog in residence, but also The Cupcake Queen, BiL and Murphy (FD’s Big Bruvver).
On Saturday we’d all started off our hol by introducing The Cupcake Queen and BiL (Brother-in-Law) to the delights of the Loch Leven Seafood Café. The first real warm day of the year had brought just enough heat in the sunshine to allow us to sit out on the balcony and munch our shellfish al fresco. The Fish (shellfish) Soup was superb! The Langoustine with Lemon Mayonnaise as good as I remembered and the scallops had a new sesame driven oriental twist. With the sun sparkling on the rippling waters of Loch Leven and the mountains of Glencoe and Beinn a Beithir dominating to the south our Gelato Affrogato (ice cream with espresso coffee) spoke of red canopied cafes overlooking mountain locked Italian lakes. Four pairs of sunglasses contemplated our Scottish counterpart and reckoned we weren’t too badly off.
Our relaxed drive north took in the mandatory tourist viewpoints above Strome Ferry (above Loch Carron) and above Loch Garry, arriving at a sun drenched Laide just after 6pm.
Still enough time to take the Fatdogs to the beach at Mellon Udrigle. The FD’s pounded along the sand and into the calm waters of the little bay as cameras were inevitably pointed across the water towards the mountains of Assynt.
Long shadows stretched over spotless sand as we took in the last couple of hours daylight but inevitably our thoughts were returning to food, so it was back to our cottage at the Old Smiddy for supper…and to take at the view