'A sense of humour lends you poise, it gives you balance and it helps you to bend without breaking'

(HH Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda)

Menooterpootering; Touring the Father

It all began with Neighbour M getting back from a week in Yorkshire. She came up with some Wensleydale for the father and tales of a wonderful break-away. It had been at the invitation of some friends, who were using a 'holiday bond'. She was vague on the details of it, but I could tell the father was intrigued. Research is a bit of an addiction for the YAMster. Read enough to think it might be worth ordering the brochure for the old guy.

He got a very prompt email in return with thanks for showing interest... and notice of an 'open day' up at the Trossachs. The glint in his eye was unmistakable; it is rarely seen these days.

"Road trip, daddy?"

The day dawned perfectly. We did have a fore-standing obligation to attend a fund-raiser in the morning, but after an hour there, we took off directly. Round the ring road, onto the M8 then the M9 to Stirling, then off to the left via Callander. When we got to Kilmahog (poor beastie), another turn left and along Loch Venachar, through Brig o' Turk and then along Loch Achray. We were in the Eastern reaches of the Loch Lomond and Trossachs national park. It stretches all the way over to Dunoon.

We spent an hour at the holiday property, being given the 'spiel' about holiday bond and how it is a cut above your average time-share option, and taking the tour of some of the units. I commented to the guide that I could see it was five-star holidaying. "Oh no, this is only our four-star property, we have to work on it a bit more."

Okay then.

Out in the sun again, we had our picnic lunch (oh I loves me a pickernicker). "Scenic drive home then, daddy?"

"Why not indeed!"

Down to Aberfoyle via the Duke's Pass, where we met a lot of cyclists on 'an event'. I found their map. By happy-stance, Little Ren took us along almost that entire route.

That's an interactive map - you can scroll it. In our little happy-stance, (well I was happy. Father was along for the ride), we went down the Gartmore road, then across to Buchlyvie (zoom the map) and then cut back up to Port of Monteith. Back down to Kippen.

We saw a sign for 'Courtyard Cafe... 6 miles'. Hmmm, time for tea. We hadn't really planned on travelling West again, but Little Ren kept on going... and going... and going. Eighty seven Six miles and 35 minutes later (yes the road was a sheep track) we came upon the advertised cafe, just outside Fintry. It's at Knockcraich Farm, which is clearly diversifying. We arrived as they were closing. No worries, did we mind sitting outside and we would still be served? Great, thank you.

This is a place I would get lost for again happy-stancingly go out of my way to rediscover when they are properly open.

Back into the Ren - after a pause to provide massage services to the farm feline - and we found our way back to Edinburgh via Falkirk. It was a long day but, importantly, the father really enjoyed his tour and dropped all sorts of little memories from the days when we lived in the caravan and he was still an apprentice engineer; many of the lines in that area were erected by Balfour Beatty; and he didn't fall asleep or even nod just once.

We took off the next day too. More on that next week.


  1. YaYa what a special treat for your Dad and FOR you to have this beautiful trip together and the Scottish weather was kind to you too.
    That is a beautiful cat!!
    Hugs HiC

  2. So glad you had a chance to spend time with your dad. My cousin have done something like "holiday bond". Not sure which one she used.
    I call it place swapping.
    Coffee is on

  3. We think our comment went into space. Looks like a fun trip. We especially like the depth of the sentence saying you were happy and father was just along for the ride.

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  4. that is one pretty cat - I had a wonderful ginger cat named Banjo Patterson ...he lived a very long happy life.

  5. OMD That was a FABULOUS trip with your Dad. THANK you fur sharing it with us.
    Pee S. THAT is a BEAUTIFUL Castle.

    1. Hari OM
      That's no castle guys... that' the holiday place we were visiting!!! It was a grand 'touring lodge' built in the Victorian era in the Scottish Baronial architectural style. We have many such stately 'piles' in the Bonny Land!!! Yxx

  6. that was the perfect day for a road trip and I say thank you that I could see so much great things with you :o)

  7. That is a beautiful feline. Even Miss Oswin agrees here!

    We love road trips and since I have been on (at least part) of that trip with you, I know it must have been stunning.

  8. This is beautiful, Yamster! The kids are going to Edinburgh as part of their late June trip! Such fun! I love it! xx

  9. Time-share option there who could say no to that! Oh the peace and quiet! Love the views.
    Sweet William The Scot

  10. Road trip with your Dad is something,which happens once in a while.

  11. What a great day out with your Dad.
    I think my colleague Steve did that cycling event, last weekend?


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