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Richard Clegg

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Scotland the brave [Sep. 13th, 2010|08:02 pm]
Richard Clegg
I've just got back from the wild north. Very wild and very north in this case -- we were in Lochaline on the Sound of Mull, diving and what a great trip.

We dived Capernwray on the way up, the first place I ever dived. It now contains a huge jet plane. We swam through the hold and pretended to parachute jump out. I sat on the tail and pretended I was flying. I reenacted an incident of panic from my first dive involving a fairground horse. At the deepest part we found a gnome garden and a huge pig statue which was using a rabbit vibrator.

We dived the wreck of the Hispania, a small but very intact wreck from the fifties which feels slightly sombre to me as the captain went down with the ship.

We stopped for lunch in the small village of Tobermoray with its brightly coloured houses and tramped through the place in our dive gear noshing on pies and watching the sea.

After dark we donned glowsticks and torches and made a ridiculous dive round the local harbour. The dive was rarely so deep that we could not stand up and our shore cover could see everything we were doing as could gawpers in the local pub. We spent the time searching for "treasures of the deep" which in this case was whatever junk people throw off the harbour, taps, spoons and millions of scallop shells. At one point we uncovered a recent fish carcass with dozens of green harbour crabs climbing over each other to gnaw it. It was a scene which would give Lovecraft a shiver of horror.

We caught scallops, cooked them from fresh and served them in shells in a cream and leek sauce. Nothing like eating something you caught yourself.

Porpoises chased our bow wake on the way back home.

When we got back on the final day the tide was too low to moor and the skipper made up don dive gear and swim to shore. The locals were somewhat amused by a full boat heading past port and pushing all its passengers off the back as I trudged dripping up the steps a man stood gawping at me. I just said "I think we really upset the captain somehow" and went to pack my gear.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: ms_siobhan
2010-09-13 08:50 pm (UTC)
I'd like to give Lovecraft a shiver of horror after the nightmares he gave me when I first read some of his stories at a very tender age.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-09-13 08:54 pm (UTC)
Well I suppose it's a bit late to slap scuba gear on him and dunk him in a Scottish harbour?
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[User Picture]From: ms_siobhan
2010-09-13 09:33 pm (UTC)
Possibly but I'd be up for a grave robbing expedition.
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[User Picture]From: ivory_goddess
2010-09-14 06:08 am (UTC)
I've vaguely heard of deepwater gnomes but the pig statue - did you make that up to check people were reading properly??
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-09-14 07:04 pm (UTC)
No really -- at about 18 metres in the gnome garden is a statue of a pig, about 1.5m tall and she has a rabbit vibrator. Very weird. There's also a lot of strange gnomes, like a hello kitty and Stadtler and Waldorf.
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[User Picture]From: drpete
2010-09-14 06:09 am (UTC)
I reenacted an incident of panic from my first dive involving a fairground horse. At the deepest part we found a gnome garden and a huge pig statue which was using a rabbit vibrator

Are you sure you've got the right gas in that SCUBA tank?
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-09-14 07:05 pm (UTC)
(Grin) Pretty sure -- at least we all came back having had the same illusions so that's a good sign.
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[User Picture]From: shermarama
2010-09-14 08:19 am (UTC)
as I trudged dripping up the steps a man stood gawping at me. I just said "I think we really upset the captain somehow" and went to pack my gear.

Hooray for obfuscation!
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-09-14 07:05 pm (UTC)
I totally recommend Capernwray if you're in the area by the way. Amazing site.
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[User Picture]From: shermarama
2010-09-14 08:02 pm (UTC)
As in, actually worth going to just for the sake of it, rather than just a decent place to go training? I mean, Stoney Cove is much nicer as a training place than Gildenberg or Wraysbury but I'd generally want to have a reason to be going, not just because it's quite close to my bloke's parents' house and therefore offers a sort of unspoken challenge if we're ever up there visiting.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-09-14 08:07 pm (UTC)
You know I think it probably is worth visiting just for the sake -- especially if you're somewhere just an hour or two anyway on a visit. I'm told it's very busy weekends but midweek it's great. Good vis, massive friendly trout (and I'm told sturgeon if you can find them) and a lot more interesting things to find than Stoney has.
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[User Picture]From: shermarama
2010-09-14 08:15 pm (UTC)
Well, indeed, it's seven somewhat scenic junctions of M6 from my Mum's. I shall bear that in mind.
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[User Picture]From: foxy76
2010-09-14 02:58 pm (UTC)
That sounds like a wonderful trip :-) I like the idea of cooking fresh caught scallops, although I am less keen on the idea of being pushed from a boat!
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-09-14 07:05 pm (UTC)
Heh... you couldn't be tempted by a bit of diving then?
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[User Picture]From: foxy76
2010-09-15 08:28 am (UTC)
No diving, funnily enough, the only bit that really really appealed was the 'eating' bit of your story ;-)
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