Sunday 22 February 2015

On The Trail Of The Lonesome Pine

It could be said that the Tense household has reached an age and levels of activity and excitement that befit our hair colour. 


So, yesterday evening, when I wandered into the lounge, I was shocked to discover Our Lass reading from the sort of book that I wouldn't expect to see in her hands. The cover had been removed, but there was no disguising the subject matter. Well, they do say that a change is as good as a rest.

This morning, after a long lie-in to contemplate this new twist to our relationship, some wet celery was produced and, after that, things became somewhat steamy.

Just to be clear, I'm talking LFHW, not BDSM.

Yep, Our Lass was making chicken broth, using the carcass of last night's roast chicken and a liberal sprinkling of the contents of the veg, salad and herb shelves. Spice up your life, indeed.

Leaving the pot simmering gently on the hob, we drove down to Rose Ness for a walk along the cliffs towards the end of the promontory. A brisk south easterly wind, gusting to 35 knots, made our progress interesting, to say the least. Fulmars were enjoying the air currents, effortlessly gliding along the coast, though other bird life had the decency to look like they were struggling a bit.

Cliff top pools and a view out to Copinsay

Standing above a sheltered cove, we noticed several bits of wood and a length of rope on the rocky beach below. I scrambled down the cliff to see if anything was retrievable, though to be honest, to date, our beach-combing has been of a fairly lightweight dimension (shells, glass, a small fishing float, that sort of thing).

Once at the bottom of the cliff, I took the opportunity to photograph a sea stack and then set to, untangling rope and sizing up the wood.

I'm still not exactly sure what possessed me, but I arrived back at the cliff top carrying a pine log about three metres in length. Our Lass looked at me quizzically, for it wasn't a certainty that it would fit in the car, even if we could carry it all the way back to our parking spot. Discretion being the better part of valour, I temporarily disappeared back down the cliff to gather the rope.

Neither of us are as fit as we used to be, so the motivation for this escapade would have to be the desire to create a garden feature using the wooden pole. Taking stock of our options (crossing five hundred metres of moorland, climbing over a gate, then traversing another six hundred metres of rough pasture), we tried various methods of transporting the log. Rolling it along worked well for a while, where the vegetation was short. Carrying it at waist height was less successful, Our Lass veering off at an angle to our intended direction. In the end, we settled on carrying it on our shoulders, but as I now had the rope as well as the heavy end of the log, photos were impossible.

Finally, back at the car and our internal thermostats well above normal operating temperature, a swift calculation revealed that the log was too long to fit in a Ford Fiesta, even with one end resting on the dashboard. Fortunately, we had enough rope to lash the tailgate down, so that the gusts of wind didn't try to rip it off its hinges. We carefully made our way home and unloaded our booty, a definite ramping up of our beach-combing efforts.

By now the broth was filling the kitchen with a wonderful aroma, I just wasn't sure I'd have the strength to pick up a spoon to eat it.


laligalover said...

Iffy thought, Gudula pole-dancing?

Imperfect and Tense said...

Bro! Wash your keyboard at once!

And why assume it's hers?

Ruth Walker said...

Father! Is that the same beach I scrambled down to all by myself? How did you get a log up that?!

Kudos for all the adventuring and soup making! xxx

Imperfect and Tense said...

Daughter! Yes it was.

And the answer is "Very carefully".


Katie (Nature ID) said...


Martin said...

It sounds like you could try making a totem pole/perch for the birds from it.. (carved top designs, holes drilled to take some horizontal driftward). Assuming you aren't planning on burning it (in pieces), then it might also form a nice edge of a raised bed in the garden.
Whatever, it sounds like a good piece of reusing endeavour.

Imperfect and Tense said...

LOL, Katie, it's a staple for life :o)

Imperfect and Tense said...

There are just so many options, Martin. The only one I've discounted so far is trebuchet.