.............not all those that wander are lost..............

TGOC 2010 Days 4 + 5

Day 4

{Photo taken after Tomdoun on the road to Invergarry}

Diary entry - Monday 17th May [11 hours walking]
All road walking today but good views. Took main road option to Fort Augustus as it was shorter. I need new feet, please!
Brilliant canal tow path.
Good (but querky) new campsite in FA.
Lunch in Invergarry Hotel gave me heart burn and cost £17.45! I enjoyed it at the time,.
Pitched alongside Cameron and Gina. Shared a little wine and a few stories in the evening sun.  Had a glorious HOT shower then (probably) foolishly washed all my socks and under clothes.
Coldest night yet - had to zip into sleeping bag hood but slept quite well. (NO ROCKS!)
Waiting till lunchtime to set off today - clothes still not quite dry and my feet could do with a rest.

{A peaceful canal-side scene}

Day 5 and the start of Day 6
A morning spent wandering around in Fort Augustus in my crocs was just long enough to let my poor feet relax so after some lunch in the town I returned to the campsite, packed up my now dried washing and dry tent then set off. Another day of road walking, but this time heading for the hills! Tonight would be a wild camp as I threaded my way over the heather towards the Burma Road and a descent into Aviemore.

{A TGOC cradle for my water bottle}

The weather was still wonderful, sunny and warm. I thoroughly enjoyed my walk and had lunch beside Loch Tarff. The walk to the summit of Suidhe followed and then I eventually came upon the Inn at White Bridge. By now it was 5.30 and the sight of the Inn sign announcing 'food served all day' was too tempting to pass. I ordered a meal and asked if there was any chance of camping nearby. I still had 5 miles to go until I reached my designated wild camp but I felt my feet would benefit from a bit more rest with an early stop.

Full of good homecooked food I then suddenly decided to forget the camping and asked if there was a room available. There was, so I settled into it, had a shower, plugged my phone in for a charge up, even watched some television and fell asleep very quickly.

I woke early, packed my rucksack, and then, putting my now fully-charged phone on the windowsill with some other small stuff, I received a text message.

The message said 'you have missed 4 calls' and was followed by another from my son-in-law saying 'phone me.' 

I tried to get a signal to return the calls (all from my husband) or to send a text to my son-in-law. It didn't take much figuring to work out that there was a problem with my daughter or grandson or some other family emergency. No signal.

Trying to stay calm, I went down to the breakfast room. I asked the hotel owner, who was serving breakfast, if there was a place nearby I could get a phone signal. "Over the road," she said, "or you can use the pay-phone." As it was barely 7 am I was unsure whether my husband would be awake to answer the phone. I ordered breakfast, ate some of it, then went outside to try and find the illusive signal.

The Challenge 2010 was over for me. My daughter 7 months pregnant was in hospital, on morphine, with appendicitis. It still gives me a chill now to think about it.

The owner of the hotel offered to give me a lift to Inverness, where my husband would pick me up, and then we would hotfoot it down to Yorkshire. I phoned Roger to withdraw.

The rest of the story is history, as they say.

{Happy endings for 2010 - my daughter with my grand-daughter - born 8th August 2010}

1 comment:

Louise said...

Ahhh! That last photo, very cute!