/ Scotland2016

Sat - avec mois le deluge

Last night's choice of car park to overnight in was excellent. Despite being close to the train line it was quiet enough as few trains use the line. Wi-Fi was available via CalMac whose ferry terminal was just over the line or BT Fon. A decent night's sleep too.Rather than brew up in the van we might as well indulge ourselves and go to Wetherspoons for breakfast. Yes I know it's a pub but they do a good breakfast cheap and their filter coffee is "bottomless cup" as our transatlantic cousins like to refer to free refills. It's only a couple of hundred yards and the rain has eased off to light (some very heavy downpours overnight). We sit down and I'm about to order when I realise that my wallet is back in the van. Now Liz could pay but yesterday I withdrew £200 from a hole in the wall so we had cash for next week. Not comfortable with that in the van,still it's only a little stroll, off I set in the light rain. Within 50m the rain has turned heavy which is just a passing phase on the way through to torrential. By the time I reach the van I am dripping. Dilemma, stay in the van until it passes over risking a cold breakfast, or head back. The decision was made for me when I saw how much water was coming off my raincoat into the van. No point in getting both me and the van interior damp so I hood up and set off back into the deluge. The good news is that my Paramo jacket is completely waterproof. The bad news is that I wasn't wearing over trousers and my legs are soaked. Grasping my trouser thighs it is not difficult to wring out a steam of water. Not comfortable. So a waddle to the gents is called for and performing movements akin to an Apache rain dance (how totally inappropriate) I raise both thighs under the warming caresses of the hand drier. Repeat until the drier sulks from overuse and refuse to play any more, then try the next one. Wetherspoons you need more than 2 hand driers for these trouser drying moments!. Fortunately no one entered during this procedure, I fear my actions might have been attributed to severe incontinence!We breakfasted, hunkered down in Wetherspoons until the rain abated, wandered the streets of Oban in the drizzle. Annoyingly I discovered W H Smiths did have a couple of copies of Para Handy on the shelves after all. Oh well, my eBay copies should be with David by now.Oban is a nice neat little town, basically one long shopping street with all the through traffic funneled through it. They've added a marginally out of town complex with Aldi. Lidl and Tesco, just a couple of hundred metres out of the centre. Imagine what happens to all that traffic flow when the traffic lights to turn right into the supermarkets are not working. Yep, gridlock throughout the town. In addition, the entire pavement network is being redone so pedestrians are similarly inconvenienced, it's a mess! Fortunately our little haven of a car park is just out of the main flow on the ferry side of town so no problem for us! I did say it was a good choice!High street shopping merely provided a whisky measuring cup (it seemed a good idea) and a book. The book being " Writing On The Road ", Sue Reid Sexton's tales of traveling Scotland (and France) in a tiny Romahome campervan. As a humble blogger there's nothing worse than someone else beating you to the publisher!Supermarkets not only provided essential food restocks but also a foldable solar charger that will hang in the van windows and recharge phones etc. We've been looking for one for a while and Lidls turned up trumps.It is interesting that I blog about the mundanity of shopping in Oban when we have a 4 hour long ferry trip to Islay (via Colonsay). But the crossing was unmemorable, apart from the television broadcasting the history of Hibernians winning the Scottish Cup and Crystal Palace being denied the English equivalent.Arrival on Islay was latish. 8:30pm so a quick run across to a campsite. Lots of campers parked along the shoreline, so maybe we'll wild camp later in the week, but let's get our bearings first and go for the Pont Mor site.