This is the last Blog before we set off on our DX-Pedition to the Isle of Arran. On a personal level anything that could go wrong this week has with expensive Fridge freezers going on the blink, A header separation kit I was hoping to loan for my FT-8900 falling into the put away somewhere safe..... I think we all have items like that and there's more but I am not going to send you into fits of depression..... Radio World came to the rescue with the head separation kit and the radio is nicely installed ready for the trip.
So the day started here with me fitting the head separation kit and everything was done with out issue.
The Wx was very good with a fine sunny day accompanied by a bracing breeze
This picture was taken around 2.30pm looking across Morecambe Bay at Low Tide.
Loading the Kit
Stop 1 Ian, Hughie, Martin and Damien arrived complete with van to load the coaxial cable and Racal mast and tables etc from my QTH.
Stop 2 Morrison's for a food shop
The shopping list for Morrison's included all the basic in vegetable, Bread, Condiments and spices which Mark and Paddy will turn into a veritable feast over the coming week.
Martin had one shopping list and ticked off the items once we had them and Kev and his Dad Paddy had the second list and attacked the contents in another part of the Store. Both Kev and Mark managed to bring the food bills down with sizable discounts which was great.
So what does it take to feed an army of hungry DX-Pedition people?
Here's Marks list
The butcher is gonna Vac-Pac tommorow mornings fresh meat cuts for maximum freshness!
The Meat list for info with approx prices:
2 x 5 lb Packs Minced Steak (approx £20)
5 x 5 Ib Packs Cumberland Sausage (approx £50)
1 x 5 lb pack of chicken breasts (approx £10)
1 x large Ham/Gammon joint (approx £15)
1 x large Lamb joint (approx £20)
4 x Packs of Bacon approx 180 rasher in total (approx £40)
6 x Horseshoe Blackpuddings (£15)
2 x large Steak tray pies from Harrisons at Cockermouth, which i have ordered and need to pick up tommorow night.
ALSO, bought the VINO:
1 x 3 lt box of Banrock Station white wine
1 x 3 lt boxes of Kumalal red wine
2 x 3 lt boxes of Banrock Station red wine
Supermarkets are great for convenience and low prices but there is nothing like getting fresh meat from a family butcher..... The pictures below were taken this afternoon at a traditional butchers just a stones throw from the Owls Nest where you'll find members of sands contest group each Monday night.
All the meat you see here is fresh quality meat, nothing frozen, no artificial lights to make the food look good and all prepared by a local family butcher with tradional fresh cuts of meat.
Sadly the man who prepared these meats is one of a dying breed of Master Butcher whose meat is guaranteed to cook and taste fantastic....
Why make a point of this?.... Well its because I had the privilege of being taght by two Master Butchers an a small traditional family butchers that was passed down from father to son..... My wages were not great £6 per week and all the meat my mother wanted at half price...... I started work at the age of 12 each night after school, I went into apprenticeship after leaving school at 14 and served my time.
The Owls Nest
I mentioned the Owls Nest earlier and it dawned on me that throughout all our Blogs there have been no pictures of it.
Our delectable Landlady Maria and her staff keep us supplied with excellent beer and we will miss her cry at the end of a Monday Night, "Right Radio Men, Time to go!"
Planning the route:
Ian had a chat with Brendan and after finding problems with our original plan decided that our best route would seem to be M6 then M74 to the A71 then across country. Which also appears to be the shortest route.
The guys from Workington expect to meet up with us at Gretna Services from where we will travel down in Convoy
Well that's about it for now, in the next blog you will find news of our journey as we set off for the beautiful Isle of Arran.
G0RDH (The Reluctant Contester)