Jonathan: Writing this in front of a huge log fire in the lounge/dining/games/kitchen area of the Oban Backpackers Hostel. Just £19 for a bunk and breakfast, and a nice relaxed atmosphere. As it happens I’ve got room to myself, so that’s handy as I can spread out all my stuff to dry on abover or near the heating radiator: Just after I left the station it started to rain, and quickly it came down like a deluge. By the time I’d cycled to the hostel I was really wet! Mobile phone contract now cancelled to save money so I went out to look for a phone box, but none I found worked properly. Denise must be wondering what’s happened to me: have I been mugged, the money and valuable taken, and left for dead? After this post I shall get back to reading a book about the island of Kerrera, which is a lovely little place just by Oban, and then I’ll make it an early night.
Jonathan: Queen Street is such an easy station to get around and it took just a few minutes to get round to the Oban train, get the bike stored properly in the special bike racks (train has capacity for 12, which 4 times more than the HST to Edinburgh!). Now dark, so unfortunately I won’t get to see any of the wonderful scenery, which is a pity as this is the first time I’ve used the train between Glasgow and Oban. Time to raid my panniers for goodies to eat, and then put my head down for a rest after the excitement earlier.
Jonathan: Wonderful scenery all the way – especially after York, highlights being Durham, Newcastle on Tyne, Alnmouth, Berwick on Tweed. Delays due to a broken-down cross-country train and a ‘bridge-strike’ (ie a vehicle having hit a rail bridge) mean the train got into Edinburgh 45mins late. I now had just two trains, each 15mins apart to get to Queen St or I’d miss the Oban train. Waverley is a complicated station to get around, all the more so with a bike, having to use the lifts and even having to queue for them! By the skin of my teeth I got the next train and I needn’t have worried as there were few folk on it, and not other bikes that I knew of. Saw some lengths of the airport branch of the tram line under construction: didn’t design that but did do a lot of cleaning up of the topographical survey model.