I have been lucky enough to be included into a group of friends weekly meet-ups over the last year or two. A couple of them I already knew and was friends with. Anyway it had become a bit of a mainstay for me.
Recently it was one of our pal's 50th birthday and she decided that in celebration she'd like people to join her in a holiday on the isle of Mull in a rented house. As many of us as were able said yes and so quite a few discussions and arrangements had to be made, ferry booked for the vehicles we would be taking, food bought and loaded into the van, music, DVDs, binoculars, cameras and, of course secretly, presents and menu plans. Cooking roots and sleeping arrangements agreed, and funds collected and the day of departure came.
It had been agreed 3 hours would be enough to get to Oban for the ferry, although I did rather tentatively (unfortunately) say I was doubtful it would be enough time for any leeway. So we all actually just got there in time to be put into the standby queue because we missed check in time - the naughty queue - huge relief when we were allowed on.
At last out to sea and even in pretty poor weather it was a blast to be back out on deck again. The rolling of the ferry in slightly lumpy sea - it wasn't at all massive - but just that wee bit of roll was so good, the air, chilly and damp add it was, and the big sky and sense of space - it was like a release, to breathe again.
So finally the first eight arrived on Mull with a car and a large van, including Millie the dog which made 9. Birthday girl, van driver and Millie's 'mum' (!) and I travelled in front of the van which was an intense experience due to Millie's extreme and unconstrained excitement - she is not a small dog - but hugely lovable and affectionate. She obviously knew that this was an exciting and important journey, and wanted to see every bit of it!
The house was magic - i already knew the house from the road, having passed it on my way to Iona so often down the years, but never been inside. It did not disappoint, in fact we couldn't have asked for better.
The weather started off quite wild, but in a day or two calmed down to milder temperatures.
We were on the Ross of Mull, fairly near Carsaig Bay. The movie "I Know Where I'm Going" was filmed around here and at Carsaig, and this telephone box features in the film as well!
the old jetty at Carsaig
looking down to the bay
Golden Eagle - we all became obsessed with spotting Sea Eagles, Golden Eagles were just common!!
There were loads of walks to go on and cooking to be done although I was allowed off cooking duty due to my lack of abilities. There were wonderful views from the house over the loch, and sunsets to die for.
Ben More looking up the loch from the house
Ben More was climbed by a few of us - not me though! Quite a good climb, apparently.
We also had a trip to Staffa, which I will post later.