Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Skips breakdowns and police

We had as always a lovely drive down through the mountains even though we were running from a blizzard at the rear of the truck

After a wee stop of at the Muir for a wee treat of a takeaway we headed to Inverness

We got Inverness at a little after 10.00pm and headed to Tesco so Mel could do the shopping funny how things are so different in the city the all night garage was unmaned so you need a credit card to get fuel and when mel got to the checkout it was them automated things and she asked as she does in Dingwall for them to open a checkout but they refused guess that will be the last time we shop there mush more friendlier in Dingwall.

12.00am and it was time to head of and have a look at skios for pallets wood etc that we could save from the landfill and to give me material for nest boxes etc also wood for the burner.

Heading to the back of Maplins we saw a load of shop fitters and loads of wood all over and after finding the boss Rick from Leicster and getting his permission we started to load the truck up.

Before we had loaded 4 pallets the police arrived and where sitting staring at us so i head over to what i found out to be a wee natzi copper he first asked what we were doing and when i explained stating i had permission he got out the car and pushed passed saying we will see.

then he turned up saying my truck was reported as off the road according to the police computer and after half an hour showing mots tax disc loge book etc he came back at us and said the woman had got the wrong reg no aplolgy and standing right in our faces mubbled something about the reg plate before heading of his mate gave us a side ways glance as if to say sorry ..

We finished and and Rick said he would have another few tons on Friday so off we headed home and apart from breaking down with a leaky pipe to the steering pump ( repaired with a well placed hammer blow)

it was an easy if slow journey home

another 7 tons of stuff saved from going to the landfill

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A wee film about us on STVs the HOUR SHOW click on STV logo to see the film

A wee film about us on STVs the HOUR SHOW click on STV logo to see the film
Andy the Daft Hermit lives 45 minutes outside Inverness with his wife Mel in an old bus parked in a layby. This current home of theirs is the longest they have ever stayed in one spot. “I’ve been travelling now 25 years,” said Andy Lowe. “Mel’s been travelling 15. One of the reasons we’ve come and stayed up here is because of Mel’s health. I wanted to bring her to the mountains for fresh air and clean water and just a slower pace of life.” Mel has had breast cancer twice, skin cancer once, and for three years believed she had bone cancer after being wrongly diagnosed. Andy’s belief in the restorative powers of the north made them pack up ‘The Black Bus’ that they live in and cross the border into Scotland. New Highland home for hermit couple Andy and Mel “I think we both believe in trying to get to a more simple way of life,” said Andy, “but it’s strange for us because we are sort of hermits, or we like to live separate, but it’s not being anti-social… it’s just the way we are that allows us to be creative.” Andy first began travelling when he left the army. Fed up with bureaucracy he packed a rucksack and left for France and has been travelling ever since. By investing any money the couple have earned into solar panels and wind generators they now live a self-sustaining existence, without electric bills, and collect rain water “straight from Heaven”. “It’s not easy,” said Mel. “There might be time when there might not be enough facilities around, but you always find a way, you know?” Rather than rejecting technology, Andy blogs about his travels online and collaborates with artists from around the world via his ‘Scratchy Heid Film Studio’, which he runs from a static trailer next to the couple’s bus. He explained his philosophy: “My belief is that if you can go through life and you drop dead and you’ve got a balance there that slightly outweighs the good than the bad, you’ve done alright. “Yesterday, with what Mel’s been through with the cancer and all that, I had a woman on one of my sites there that thanked me for the writing, for the positive things, and to me that’s worth everything. You can keep your millions, we’re not interested. That is what we do.” To check out Andy’s artwork and video projects check out his website. MORE FROM THE NORTH

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