I have a bunch of very adventurous friends and a crew of us spent New Years weekend in Scotland getting pelted by rain, and for those who climbed the mountain, snow as well, trying to see how many adventures we could fit into 5 days. Here is a list of my “Lessons from Lamlash”:
I went mountain biking for maybe the second time ever in my life doing what a mountain bike is supposed to do. I mean, I grew up “mountain biking” with my dad … on trails in the metroparks in northeast Ohio.. which if you know Northeast Ohio metroparks trails.. are not so much roughing it on a mountain.
Lessons from Lamlash
A. Rules for mountain biking:
1.) It is crucial to have a bike with working brakes. If your bike stops having working brakes there are several ways of dismount:
– dive headlong into brush
– rugby tackle a tree with a monkey arm grab hooking your body around it and let the bike carry on without you into a river
– scream like a girl and hope that the cars or other bikes get out of the way so you can pummel past them at lightning speed until your bike runs out of steam
– hope someone else chivalrously takes your bike with faulty brakes who is much bigger than you and therefore can use their feet as brakes and wear the rubber out of their soles down a 1.5 mile long hill on a winding road
2.) No matter how water proof your clothes are, some things are just not waterproof enough for West Coast of Scotland rain. You will be wet somewhere. (Slooshy feet- thank you waterproof Merrells and woolly socks and waterproof trousers)
3.) If you have had a day spent in the rain a sauna is a nice alternative to crazies who decide to go up a mountain a second day in a row.
4.) You can live if you swim in 4*C water
5.) to some people “holiday” is busting through as many activities as possible in one small period of time. To others “holiday” is busting through a season of Downton Abbey
6.) Arranging eat-offs in the middle of the night is a good way to clear up the dishes and get rid of left overs.
7.) As is egg roulette to get rid of excessive amounts of eggs.
8.) The ferries are not reliable to Arran and you might have to live there forever. Or never get there.
9.) Lighting chinese lanterns and letting them go: into the wind, into houses, into power lines, without letting the fire marshall, coast guard, police, every neighbour know, without an extinguisher, or bowl of water, or being in an open field, around lots of flammable people and using aerosol spray cans to instigate flame, and breaking every other rule in the 2 page leaflet that comes with the lanterns is a good laugh of an evening..
10.) There might be a an accent or two out there difficult enough to understand that it might compete with Geordie. Some of those accents may come from Scotland. Translation ability may be worsened by alcohol and Scottish poems.