Day Three: Gairloch Carn Dearg

It’s approximately 14:20 and I am sitting in a porch of the Youth Hostel in the coastal town of Gairloch. The view across the loch is absolutely stunning. I can see mountains in the distance, shrouded in clouds as if they have something to hide. Although I completed 120 miles much earlier than I expected, I don’t mind sitting here.The hostel doesn’t open until 1700 and I can hear a chicken somewhere nearby. Maybe I could feed it some of my leftover porridge oats…

I met some amazing people at the Youth Hostel in Glen Nevis. Tom is a computer programmer turned musician who is at University at Glasgow. We were joking about computer illiterate people (If you don’t know what that means, you are probably it.). Esther is pretty cute and good to talk to. She is a musician along with Tom. Unfortunately, I failed to grab their emails so I most likely will never see them again. It was fun while it lasted, guys!

I am also eating a cereal bar. They have proven to be rather effective at combatting hunger. I am using what is left of my laptop power to charge the GoPro camera. I am going to set it to look across the loch and hopefully capture the clouds rolling off the mountains. It’s strange, really. The side of the loch that I currently reside on is very sunny, whilst the other side seems quite wet and rainy. It was very sunny today. The ride down the Great Glen was absolutely incredible. Another point to the A82 as being a great road. I knew that the Loch Ness was big but when you are actually there, it seems to go on forever.I can see a flock of seagulls (or gulls of some kind, I just wanted to slip an 80s reference in there.) playing in the water. They are chasing each other in circles.

It’s now 14:37 and the rain has cleared slightly. I can see across the entire Loch clearly now. There are lots of small islands. That reminds me, Dorinda informed me of a place called “Anthrax Island”. Apparantly,the Military stuck various Animals on the island and then bombarded the place with Anthrax. As a result of this, the island is off limits to pretty much everyone.I am not sure if I will pass this place.

It’s extremely quiet here. There is no constant drone of the motorways and the roads that you would hear in the cities. I can only hear the sound of the waves breaking and far away planes passing by.It’s so lonely out here, yet I feel like there are so many people here.

It’s now 15:10. I have spent about a half hour trying to figure out the satphone. It was getting no network, despite being left for over an hour. I remove the SIM card and replaced it after a quick clean, and it picked up the Thuraya Network instantly. When I attempted to make a call, it cut out. The signal is very picky and not as developed as the GPRS or HSDPA signal which is much better at keeping you connected. When you go out of range of a certain transmitter (Known as the cell), the network automatically transfers you to another cell instantly. However, as the Sat Phones do not benefit from this, I have found that if you move around while you are talking, the signal drops very quickly.

The rain has cleared up now and I can see for miles.A staff member has turned up and informed me that the cleaning is still taking place. I am content with sitting on this porch. For what it is worth, It’s pretty warm in this biker gear.

I failed to mention that I popped into a coffee store in the town of Gairloch. Although the staff came across as a bit rude, it was a really nice place. I think they had a bit of a problem understanding my accent. The feeling is mutual.

I will update this blog later.I have a long day ahead of me tomorrow. Until then, I have footage to backup and a camera shot to set up. Until next time.

Update:It’s now 20:19.

I was in the sitting room of the Gairloch Carn Dearg Hostel. I was reading The Hobbit on my laptop and listening to music whilst watching the sun set on the surrounding islands. When Enya’s “May it be” came on, I felt a strange sense of calm as the sun dissapeared beneath the horizon. A eerie darkness enveloped the land and within moments, darkness. I want to live here. To see such a spectacle has been a huge honour. A reminder of no matter how much humanity leaves its mark on the world, we are just children. We are small. Compared to the vast lands upon which we gaze. We are nothing. Nothing at all. I believe this trip has reminded me that there is much more to life than sitting at the same drive thru window day after day, serving the same crap to the same people.

Update 2: It’s now 20:30

Listening to Sigur Ros’ “Ekki Mukk”. It’s my current favorite song. It’s Icelandic, but while I don’t fully understand it, The music is beautiful especially with the piano solo towards the end of the song.

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