Ullapool – and Beyond

Just back from student field trip to Ullapool. Hotel very accommodating about microwaving my peculiar dishes, and very amused by whole thing. Took enough food, just, but the chef managed to incinerate my last potato which was for on the way home. Never mind! On the shore and various beaches, I saw lots of edible seaweed – bladder wrack and kelp most noticeably – and would have liked to collect some, but decided that would be one thing too far for the hotel. No shellfish, though.

I got really p***ed off with watching people eat interesting soups and chocolate cakes and lamb chops; and smelling other people’s coffee or beer (strangely enjoyable, but not quite the same as drinking it!). The students were all very supportive – even to the point of offering me bits of the plants they’d bought to make tea with! At Inverewe Gardens, in the cause of education, was obliged to break off some leaves of various herbs to demonstrate the smells…. and pocket them for tea or (in the case of the chives) to munch with my cold potato and hard boiled egg. Some delicious curly kale came away in my hand as well – good with the chicken and chilli casserole I’d brought for the evening meal.

Talking of eggs, I think the surfeit is giving me what my mum used to call egg – binding. The digestion is bizarre and sporadic, and I don’t feel too well, to be honest. Think I have a touch of cystitus and wonder if the excretory system is under some stress. Drinking plenty, but it’s so BORING….

And the ducks are laying eggs as well now. New food from the garden: Solomon’s Seal shoots, tastier and more tender than asparagus and a real treat, and lashings of salad stuff. Baby lettuce leaf seedlings nearly ready to cut, and I’ve started the chrysanthemum greens. Only two weeks to go, despite the still cold weather I’m not going to starve, but what wouldn’t I give for a pie…

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