Day Three: ‘The lack of things that are not supposed to be lacking’

I woke at around the same time as yesterday, and ate a grand total of two pieces of toast and drank a cup of tea.

It was decided, rather early on, that we would go to Saligo Bay. This is a beach open to the Atlantic Sea so is very windy, if you go into the water, you will most likely be pulled under by the strong undercurrents and drown, the grass is like small, painful, whipping needles and the trek to get there is over some fields with lots of sheep ‘leavings’. Apart from that, it’s quite nice.

For a while, we were stuck wondering why the bee kite we had kept turning in circles and, basically, dive bombing the beach. The wind was strong enough for the kite to be able to fly, so why wouldn’t it work? Had it decided it didn’t like its sole purpose of existence and instead wished to stay forever on the ground? Did it decide it wanted to become a terrorist and bomb the beach as many times as humanly possible? We will never know for sure. After about 10 minutes of fiddling with the damn thing, it eventually started to work.

The only thing I dislike about flying a kite is the constant attention with not much going on. Bobbing my arm up and down not only looks wrong at certain angles, but it also gets tiring for both your arm and hand (and gives you rope burn). There’s never any variation. It’s constant bobbing – up and down, up and down. Why can you not fly a kite going left and right, forwards and backwards or freestyle? Why the limited choice of movement?

We ate lunch perched on the rocks and sand in a sheltered concaved area in the rocks near to the field. My mother’s, my brother’s and mine sandwiches had tuna and sweet corn on, my grandmother’s had salmon on and Dave’s had tuna and tomato.

Then, as a rather communal game, we played ‘who can throw the little ball thing we just found into the bucket as we move it further away each time’. I felt I did rather well.

Most of the time that we spent at Saligo Bay I spent taking pictures of things. Things I took pictures of include: sand, rocks, sea, a boat, sky, people, grass, hills, rocks and sand, sand on rocks, people dropping sand, some sea and a boat, some grassy hills, some people on rocks, the list is almost endless.

One thing I took a rather large interest in was what seemed to be a large cotton reel. Only the top half was visible over the sand I found out it was used to tie rope around on a ship. There was quite a bit of sand on top of the cotton reel like object as well, so I commandeered David’s hat to wipe most of the sand off, but only after getting a huge splinter wedged deeply in the heel of my hand. In order to get it out, I had to rip off the skin over the wood and pull the fragmented parts out. Surprisingly, it wasn’t as painful as it sounds.

We headed back over the fields, past the remnants of what looks to have been a defence station of some form and a pile of rubble, which has the feel of the foundations for a cannon, to head over to Loch Gruniet. This is where the bird hide is. Funnily enough, we went to Loch Gruniet bird hide to look at some birds. Most preferably, of course, would be some slightly rarer birds, rather than the usual barrage of five pigeons, two magpies and a duck back at home. This, seemingly, was not to be. The total count at the end of the time we spent there was as follows: four swans, two herons and a swallow. How very exciting (for those not familiar with any form of wit, this is sarcasm).

After we went home and everyone had their showers and dolled themselves up slightly, we went to Croft Kitchen for dinner. I had the Croft Special Chilli Burger (although there was barely any chilli in it whatsoever).

When we got home, I got to do what I thought was the most exciting thing ever; build a Meccano model tractor with all the little metal and plastic bits, the screws, nuts and washers.

Following a set of honest instructions would look like this:

1)     Find part ‘a’ in a bag full of similar looking, but vitally different parts. Then do the same for parts ‘b’, ‘c’, a screw of this specific size and a nut.

2)     Put these parts together in a seemingly impossible way. Bend metal. Here’s a diagram that makes no sense.

3)     Repeat step 1 for parts ‘w’, ‘x’, ‘y’, ‘z’, three similar but, of course, different sized screws, four washers and six nuts.

4)     Put these parts together with the first contraption you made. Here’s another diagram of no use to anyone.

5)     Throw the rest of the parts on in the general area of where they should be. You don’t know where they go? Here’s a diagram useful to only the makers and really is only useful because there’s a map to some pirate’s treasure, which is why there’s so many arrows.

6)     Go back and make sure all the nuts are incredibly tight.

7)     Take it all apart, you’ve done it wrong, you silly bugger. They’re bent the wrong way and it looks nothing like the diagram!

8)     Once you’ve repeated these steps and have a product, reach for the last nut, which will complete the three hours of wrestling you’ve done with it.

9)     Realise it isn’t there and your masterpiece can never be completed.

10)Go and sit in a corner, rocking back and forth, crying and muttering about the good old days when these used to come with all the pieces.

This is basically what happened.

All I have left are some messages:

Dear Meccano ~ You used to be better. You seriously need to buck up your ideas. I am disappointed. So much. ~ sincerely, a devoted Meccano user for 14 years

Dear whoever made that goddamn kite ~ Please make a model that actually wishes to fly and doesn’t get vertigo? ~ sincerely, a disappointed kite flier

Dear sheep ~ Please don’t defecate where I wish to step ~ sincerely, someone who just wants to go to the beach

Dear kite makers all across the globe ~ Please make a kite where I can choose what movement I wish to do with my arm to make the kite fly ~ sincerely,  I’m 14, I haven’t got long before they won’t let me fly the kite anymore

Dear birds ~ show up. Goddamn. ~ sincerely, I’m not a birdwatcher really but it’d be nice

The End

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