Saturday, September 22, 2007

Another Trip to Arran

Friday was again, another day out to the Island of Arran, one of my favourite days on my territory.
I was due to catch the 09:00 crossing from Ardrossan to Brodick so I left the house at 05:30. That gave me three hours to get up to the ferry port plus extra time for traffic or roadworks. I got to Ardrossan just before 8. I went into the ferry offices and got the tickets I had reserved then made my way over to the new supermarket that has popped up since my last visit.Photo of early morning rainy car park (parking lot).
I didn't see anything that I wanted in the supermarket, so I just listened to the radio until it was time to get in the queue for the ferry.
This wasn't a normal trip to Arran, I had more than Polly for company. A new medical sales representative, Barry was coming along with me. I am in the role of mentor to this bright young man.
Barry has grown up in Scotland's central belt and has never been out to Arran before, so he was very excited. His excitement was probably the reason that he had forgotten his wallet and had to turn back when he was already halfway from Ardrossan from Paisley. He made it back to the ferry JUST in time. He was the last foot passenger to hop onto the boat. It was good that we had time to sit down and have a cup of tea for a bit. It gives the nerves a chance to calm down before we get on dry land again.
It was a gray and wet morning as the ferry chugged across to the island. The ferry we took was a lot smaller than the ferries I've taken in the past. The reason I was given for the small ferry was that this was an extra boat that has been added into the ordinary schedule to help with the additional traffic that a long weekend in Glasgow was going to create.
You can certainly feel the sea a lot more in a smaller vessel. I was worried that seasickness that I can be prone to, was going to show up. As the crossing was so short, seasickness wasn't a problem.

Here is one of the other passengers on our trip out to the island with her wee dog, Donnie.These are the wind turbines on the hill above Ardrossan as viewed from the ferry.The other ferry coming past us - the one I normally take.

Before and after our appointments on the island, I showed Barry around some of my favourite bits on the island. We went to the brewery where we both bought Arran blonde beer (one of the favourites of The Man of the Place). Then on to Arran Aromatics , then the cheese company. They had a vast display of samples of all the different flavours they've added to the exquisite cheddar. We could watch through the big glass window into the factory as the little rounds of cheddar were dipped in wax. I bought a few rounds; cheddar with chives, cheddar with Arran mustard, oak smoked cheddar and cheddar with herbs. Next time I think I'll try the cheddar with claret, with whiskey and with garlic! I should be admired for my restraint at only buying four flavours.We also hit the chocolate shop. Sorry there are no photos available of the chocolates I bought. I ate them in the car. (note: I only bought four little pieces - MORE restraint)

Me and Polly with the larger ferry in the background.

As the day progressed, it got prettier, brighter and drier. It was gorgeous when we got onto the 15:45 ferry.

I get PAID to go there!

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