You Can't Ride Around With A Tiger On Your Bike One man-cub, one motorbike. And a tiger-striped poncho, just in case.

My Hole At Loch Ness

UNITED KINGDOM | Thursday, 20 October 2011 | Views [678]

My campsite for the night, two meters from the lakes edge with my bike facing the Loch so's I can use the sidecar spotlight to find the monster. Or uni students skinny-dipping.

My campsite for the night, two meters from the lakes edge with my bike facing the Loch so's I can use the sidecar spotlight to find the monster. Or uni students skinny-dipping.

I done dug me a hole to poo in. But I didn't use it. Just wanted to test the shovel that came strapped to the sidecar of my bike. I'm sure there'll be ample opportunity to poo into ground holes in India. Heaps. Maybe I ought to start practising my aim here in the UK, where there ain't no scorpios or cobra snakes to pounce on my ass. But no, far too pretty to soil, and it'd probably make the Queen royally pissed off. Give her the shits. Bwahaha.

This isn't about the hole I done dug though, as fine a hole as it was. I probably should haf filled it back in actually, someone will probably step in it and break their cankle. I gladly left the Inverness YHA in the morning at around 10am. The hostel was full of ze Germans, and they didn't like me. P'raps t'was was due to my motorcycles great-grandpappy kicking their ass in World War II. Maybe it was more due to me smelling like wet dog and walking everywhere in bear feet, rahhh. I'd spent the night sitting in bed eating bread and cheese and shredded ham, and listening to Sigur Ros. And sipping at my bottle of port, one of two I had left in the trunk of the sidecar. I really wanted them to last as I couldn't afford such luxuries any more, same with the ham. When £2 of shredded ham is a luxury, you know you're doing it ruff.

I think positive thoughts affect the weather. I was grumpy, because of ze Germans and their doof-doof music keeping me up all last night, so it rained and rained. But once I left Inverness and headed back south for a few klicks, I cheered the heck up and the rain stopped. The scenery was incredible to ride through, if my face wasn't restricted by balaclava and neck-warmer, my jaw would be hanging open. I've never blasphemed so much in such a short timespan, every corner I took the views got better and better, at one stage riding down a road bordered on both sides by lakes, other times passing through dense forest shrouded in mid-morning fog. Pri-ti. 

I took a couple of detours off the scenic route road just because I could, and stopped at the official Loch Ness Discovery Centre, where they had an audio-visual tour thingy surrounding the myth of the Loch Ness monster. Worst five quid I spent in Scotland sadly. I mean, the presentation was quite well done, but it completely discredited the mystery of Mr. Monster. It detailed all the efforts over the years to prove the beast existed, including years-long filming of the lake surface, many diving expeditions and the photos took which were all just underwater logs, all the nutters who sighted the monster (they saw logs, or the wake left by boats, or were just drunk), and the hoaxers who kept the lie alive (underwater submersibles with fake monsters poking out of the water, photo-editing, and the earliest being a bearded git who used a hippopotamouse foot ashtray to make imprints in the mud and create plaster casts to wave around at the local pub and score free drinks. What a prick). I'd rather have not heard any of it. Kind of ruined the dream. Grr.

A few hours into my leaving the YHA, I stopped for chow-break. Chow-break! I set up stove under the sidecar to act as a rain/wind break and cooked a pack of tomato pasta, with chunks of bread ripped up and thrown in the mix. With the remaining boiled water I made some coffee (coffee powder, powdered milk and powdered sugar together in the one handy sachet, surprisingly good if you're desperate and like the taste of urine). Lucky spot I picked, there was a clearing between the road and the loch that had previously been camped in on many an occasion, a few stone circles with burnt wood in the centre, and lots of room to dance and vomit. The best part was that there was a small path just wide enough for my bike to make it down off the road, so I took this opportunity to set up camp right next to the lake and pretend that the monster really did exist and I was a world-famous alcoholic who came to drink by the lake and eat hotdogs out of a jar. It's nice to have a place to sleep while the sun is still up, gives me time to relax and explore. I went for a walk up the road, there was a grocery shop selling umm groceries. I bought a book there to read and pass the time, some Tom Clancy novel. T'was very exciting. It got quite cold as the sun set, and a fog rolled up the lake, thick enough that I couldn't see more than about ten meters, even with the motorcycle lights shining out into the night. I was secretly hoping to spot something, or hear something, desperate for an interesting experience to take with me other than the usual 'and I got so drunk there couldn't smell my own face' nonsense. No such luck, the sun came up, I couldn't smell my own face, I done dug me a hole (t'was a good hole), brushed my teef standing on a rock out on the waters of the lake (hoping the mythical beastie was attracted by minty-fresh toothpaste), and headed off south again, following the A82 road that ran down the lochs. The time spent by Loch Ness was one of my highlights, and I really hope for another opportunity someday soon to dig another great hole.

 

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