human choroinic gonadotropin

Archive for the ‘Quest’ Category

In support of augie’s quest, los angeles fitness introduced plans to host its 7th annual in-membership event, action for als, across the company’s over 690 places on saturday, february 25, 2017. Augie’s quest is a nonprofit studies initiative committed to finding a cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (als).

In addition to good fitness, LA is also known for its advanced entertainment industry. A new hobby of young people is quest-room. Our partner TheQuestFactory is the leader of this type of entertainment in LA. Be sure to visit them when the future is in this city.

La health will donate 100% of the proceeds from the occasion to augie’s quest, which immediately finances the als remedy improvement institute (als tdi). als, a debilitating neurodegenerative disorder, is diagnosed in about 6,000 human beings in keeping with 12 months. survival is commonly three to 5 years after diagnosis, and no cure currently exists for the disease.

In march 2005, augie nieto, a prominent chief in the health industry, turned into diagnosed with als, greater normally referred to as lou gehrig’s sickness. Despite the restrictions of the disease, augie maintains to lead an energetic lifestyles and function an activist for others fighting the disease. After his analysis, augie coped together with his infection by means of drawing strength from his circle of relatives, pals and a flood of messages from supporters. realizing that he may want to use his voice to raise attention for others, augie fashioned “augie’s quest” with the sole motive of finding a remedy for als.

“We’re so grateful for the $260,450 that la fitness has raised for als research over the years. that money is making a massive impact within the lab, leading to the identification of at-1501, a promising treatment for als. with the ongoing assist of la fitness and their members, we’re assured we can get this drug into section 2 scientific trials subsequent 12 months,” stated augie nieto, chief proposal officer of augie’s quest. “We recognize all that la health does to growth cognizance and deliver wish to families tormented by this devastating disease.”

“We don’t want any boundaries to face inside the manner of maximizing our companywide fundraising efforts for this worth motive, so we invite members and non-members alike to wait this occasion. We also want to say how proud we’re of our members’ participation and the way grateful we are for his or her generous support,” said invoice horner, senior vice president/leader actual estate officer at los angeles health.

The occasion is open to the public for a minimum donation of $20 in assist of augie’s quest. For details on the event or a way to make a donation, go to unique web page.

About l. a. health

A. fitness is one of the fastest growing fitness center chains inside the u.s. and presently has more than 690 places in 32 states and canada. Its project is to help as many people as feasible gain the advantages of a wholesome way of life by means of creating a national community of fitness golf equipment, providing its participants the widest variety of facilities and the friendliest carrier at an low cost charge.

Approximately augie’s quest

Augie nieto created augie’s quest following his prognosis of als in march 2005. Nieto is co-founder and previous president of life health of chicago, and chairman of octane health. Augie’s quest without delay finances the als remedy improvement institute (als tdi), the sector’s predominant drug discovery middle centered entirely on locating a cure for als. For extra information on augie’s quest and to get concerned, go to unique page.


Quest for a Cure 2017

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The 8th annual quest for a therapy walkathon will be held sunday, september 24, 2017 at vfw park in royal oak, michigan. This event is organized with the aid of 9 metro detroit-place households on behalf of their kids with rett syndrome: the cardinalis (giavanna), the casses (ashton), the macdonalds (annie), the petersons (jillian), the pettys (hailey), the rokickis (olivia), the scappaticcis (isabella), the weinrauchs (emily), and the zerials (mia).

Even as we actually inspire anyone to attend the walkathon – it’s always a top notch day for the entire family with correct meals, true amusing, and notable raffle prizes – we are hoping even people who cannot make it’s going to recall creating a donation in help of our occasion! For more records at the event and the way to participate, click on right here to go to the internet site.


Words from the Road: Glasgow

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When an adventuring party in Dungeons and Dragons needs to cross a river or a part of the ocean like we did on Sunday morning, they go down to the docks and hire a boat.

In modern UK it’s not quite that easy – much better to talk to P&O Ferry, who does all the crossings between Larne, Ireland, and Troon, Scotland.

We woke bright and early on Sunday morning, scarfing down a quick meal before heading to the harbour before 6:30am. There were a dozen or so other foot-passengers waiting for the boat as well when I checked in and was told the bad news: Larne to Troon had been cancelled due to high winds and rough seas. The good news was that they would be giving us a ferry to Cairnryan and then sending us by bus up to Troon port. Even though my stomach was starting to bother me, the ferry’s foggy portholes and comfortable seating made for an interesting little trip.

If it weren’t for the delay of more than an hour and a half it wouldn’t have bothered me; we saw some of Scotland’s beautiful Ayrshire countryside from the bus, including some great castle ruins and a whole lot of cows.

By the time we got to Troon, rain was coming down. It was 11:00 already, so we decided on an early lunch. Our waitress Natalie was kind enough to find us some alternate directions to Glasgow. Which is when things started going really wrong.

Unable to find a proper street map of Troon, we asked a local who – after telling us she didn’t understand why our directions would point us a certain way, we should go this way, instead! – pointed us down a road… which is where I have to tangent onto two things: road signs and spoken directions.

Road signs in the UK are absolutely ridiculous. Roughly as ridiculous as purple unicorns, in fact: they’re not what you’d expect, and that’s because they’re just not there. They don’t exist, no matter how much you may wish they did. When they’re there they aren’t somewhere that is necessarily visible to the naked eye; you have to search at each street corner, and hope and pray that someone thought “this street should be marked somehow!”

And when you finally think you might be lost, asking someone for directions may not be as helpful as you would like because, well, directions in the UK revolve around landmarks you’re not familiar with. “Just go a wee bit down the street here and you’ll pass a wee church and a big church; turn at the big church – not the wee church, mind, the big one – and take the second left after… no, maybe the third, aye, the third.” And before you think I’m exaggerating, yes, those are exact directions I got from someone yesterday afternoon.

We got almost 50 minutes down the road, having run into some Canadians from Orangeville who were having remarkably similar problems (but with access to a car, so perhaps less annoying), before getting back on track with the help of, without a word of a lie, a young man with bagpipes wearing a kilt.

So we walked back, much more careful about streets and landmarks. We turned right immediately after the library, and then left again when we came to the end of the street (according to the map, at least; the driveway for the building started right there too, so it was a bit misleading). Then we were on the right road and started walking along the shore, a beautiful site that was marred only by our frustration with the wrong turn so early on. One or two more helpful citizens later and we’d cemented the fact that we knew where we were going.

Part of our Google directions took us on a bike path, right through a wilderness reserve that was absolutely beautiful and reminded me so strongly of Ontario that it felt like home. We stopped a few times along the reserve, both to rest and to drink it all in. Trees and streams everywhere, not a building in sight; only the asphalt of the trail showing me that there were humans about at all.

Apparently there are biking trails that could have taken us all the way up to Glasgow, only occasionally by highway. It’s something to think of if I’m ever silly enough to do something like this again.

Part of the problem with directions is Google, which uses one street name when the street has four, only two of which are on any given sign. A fine gentleman on the bike path with his two sons gave us the best news we’d heard all day: we were on the right track and, in fact, on the road that would lead us all the way to Glasgow. “Just keep following the signs up ahead,” he told us. “As long as the roundabout exit says Glasgow, just take it. You’ll get there.”

So we did. We walked another two hours or so after meeting him, and the sun was sliding beneath the trees on the horizon when we thought we should make camp. The highway shoulders were much smaller than we had anticipated, forcing us between walking on the road – we weren’t ever honked at, and I can only imagine it’s because we looked so funny rather than because we weren’t frustrating some people – or walking through wet grass. We alternated depending on how heavy traffic was, but eventually came to a flat ground that we pushed through to find a camping site.

We came into a small forested area near a subdivision of Irvine, where we poked a bit at the ground, hoping to find something without so many roots. Eventually Drew decided to set off on his own, sans heavy pack, to search something out. We both took off our packs and he left me to watch them in the dying light of the sun.

As soon as my pack came off I was swept with a wave of nausea, something I’d felt twinging that morning but hadn’t actually succumbed to. Cramps in my stomach redoubled, and I had to sit down with the pain. Standing up made me light-headed. Something was definitely wrong, and only the adrenaline of being on the trip and the exhaustion of the pack had kept it down.

When Drew returned I let him know, and we hurried to set up camp on the stretch of beautifully flat grass he had found nearby. The tent went up easily, and we pushed everything inside as carefully as we were able. I was asleep twenty minutes later, around 8pm. Drew had cracked a glowstick – one of our nods to D&D’s “adventuring pack,” where you can buy an item called a sunrod that operates on a similar principle – and was reading to pass the early evening by.

I woke again throughout the night with cramps and waves of nausea, thankfully never having to run outside. The rain came down heavily at one point, and I am happy to say that our tent worked in every way but one (it’s too short; the feet of our sleeping bags got wet). We finally woke ourselves at almost 10am, and I knew as soon as I woke up that there was no way I could walk today.

We packed slowly, Drew having spoken to a gentleman named Richard who was out walking his dog and told us that the train station in nearby Irvine could get us to Glasgow.  Before we finished, Richard had returned with an offer to drive us to the station itself.

Let me say this now: the kindness of people we have met, from Marleen in Belfast to Richard in Irvine, has been unsurpassed by anyone I’ve ever met before. Going so far above and beyond their call to help out strangers… we could not have come even this far in our adventure without Marleen, and I’d be significantly more miserable right now if not for Richard.

I’m fairly certain it’s food poisoning. I’m even more certain that I won’t be up to walking tomorrow morning either, given how hard it is for me to even walk up the stairs, much less do it with some light-as-feathers bags that I have with valuables that I don’t want to leave in the hostel luggage room.

Drew and I are looking at alternatives for the next few days to ensure that we are still walking the full distance, to make up for the distance lost today and the distance we will surely be losing tomorrow and maybe even the next day. The advantage to us staying here overnight is that we’ll be able to ‘blog about those changes fairly soon – you won’t have to wait ’til the 8th of October for our next check-in, but unless this illness gets worse overnight instead of better, we are still very solidly finishing this trip, even if part of it has to be done by train and made up for by walking in the city.

We’re a little discouraged by all the early setbacks, but we’re not giving up. We’ve still got plenty of time to reschedule, remap, and finish up the full 500 mile walk by the end of the month. Thanks for all your support and well wishes!


Words from the Road: Larne

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This post is being posted on October 1st, but was written on September 29th from Larne, Northern Ireland, and that’s why it is dated as such. Check out our “Journal” page to get all the latest updates!

Belfast was an amazingly beautiful city, full of great sights, wonderful people, and exactly the weather they describe in travel books. I’m not kidding, folks, and I’m not being paid by the insidious travel industry* to say this, but Belfast’s weather – indeed, the whole of Northern Ireland, as I’m told – is absolutely unpredictable. Rain will turn to too-hot sun in a matter of minutes. A cool morning will turn hot at 9am and cold by 10, only to rain and be sunny again before lunch.

We started off late Saturday morning, getting a bit of extra sleep with the help of our friends David and Kim, two SCA players from just outside Belfast who were unbelievably generous to us. Their children, Andrew and Zach, helped them serve breakfast (a traditional Ulster Fry, which, let me tell you, was exactly what one needs before going on the road – full of energy and everything’s fried, so if you die, you die happy) while teaching us about the Skylanders. I’ll tell you sometime. Really.

At 9am we arrived at Belfast Castle, a modern castle offering a beautiful view of the city. We didn’t leave the castle ‘til 10; re-packing our bags and getting everything on took what could generously be described as a ridiculous amount of time. Throughout it all, David and Kim waited. Kim took a picture of us pretending to be horses:

Ridiculous, right? Just wait.

About five minutes after the fine folks who had been so patient with us drove away, my leg armour shifted and started pinching and bruising in entirely unpleasant ways. Two minutes of shifting around later and I knew there was no way I could wear them: I would have to take the offer to ship them to us in Edinburgh that our other Belfast friend Marleen, who had shown us around the city Friday afternoon, had given. I took the legs off, readjusted and, with a hearty groan, we were off. Again.

It didn’t take long for the schizophrenic weather to catch up wth us, and we alternated between shivering and sweating like crazy. Less than an hour later and my gorget slipped when I adjusted my pack, cutting off my air supply.

I’m a large man, almost six feet and with a hundred pounds on most guys. I have a great deal of upper body strength and I’m not used to being unable to physically do something that involves brute force. Which is why, when I tried to re-adjust my gorget so that I could breathe, it freaked me out a bit when I found myself unable.

Drew, thankfully, noticed and came quickly. He helped unstrap the gorget and we removed the pack as smoothly as possible… which wasn’t really very smoothly. It was very clear very soon that the pauldrons that I love so dearly would have to go.

Leaving bracers, and chainmail that is the heaviest thing – pack included – that I had with me. The 30 pounds of steel, combined with the extra-thick gambeson beneath it that allowed me to walk in chainmail with a backpack digging into my shoulders without hating life, was causing serious issues with heat regulation that I had hoped would remedy itself in the cooler climes of the United Kingdom. They did not, and so I have come to eat my hat.

Or Paul’s hat, as it were.

No, we’re not giving up. But I am leaving my armour to be shipped to me in Edinburgh. All of it but the (pleasantly visible) bracers are already safely back in Belfast, ready to go. An expensive mistake, but less than if I had tried to continue and, as Paul prophecied, left my armour “piece by piece, scattered throughout the trip.**”

With Marleen’s help we had a very nice lunch, and then – very sore and after a terrifying rolled-ankle incident caused by the armour I’d hung from my pack – got a drive to Larne, where we will start afresh in the morning with a ferry ride across to Scotland. It means that our entire mileage, other than the ferry trip itself, will come from Scottish walking; we’ll be adding some during our stay in Edinburgh, and including some of the wandering we were otherwise intending to do in Ireland. We will still be travelling 500 miles, from Larne Harbour instead of Belfast Castle, but because of the injury (still sore, but entirely walkable, don’t worry – I’ve been exercising it carefully!) and some other problems (like my backpack breaking ten minutes after the trip began) requiring a visit to a store nowhere near our route, we decided that this was worth doing to make sure that we made it the rest of the way.

Don’t worry, folks: we’re still alive, and we’re ready and rarin’ to go. I am more excited than ever to start our trip properly tomorrow, and very ready to step off that ferry in Scotland and do a 25-kilometre hike with a much lighter load on my back.

Next ‘blog will be on Monday evening from Glasgow. See you all then!

(Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter, both being updated this month!)


Heavy Armour, Hard To Carry?

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My armour is probably the most visible thing we’ve worn to date on our public training walks. It has gotten a few comments from people, from ex-SCA players to people who wanted to know if we were making a movie; some people have wanted to touch it or even try it on. (Sadly, I have to turn down the ones who want to try it on – I would have to take off my pack, and I’m always worried that once I take it off I’ll never convince myself to put it back on…)

In a recent article on the Science NOW website, some researchers at the University of Leeds did tests on a person’s energy output when walking in 30-50kg of plate armour and found that it expended “more than twice” the energy that just walking did.

The linked article explains that a lot of that comes from leg armour, of which I won’t be wearing much – greaves, sabatons and cuisses are just things I do not own and likely won’t by the time we leave (though if you’re looking to get rid of some…). My chainmail and other armour is mostly arm and torso protection; while the arms are far enough away from my centre of gravity to cause a bit more wear, the fact that I can swing them close (or even fold them, if it comes down to it) will mitigate that.

The armour is heavy, and it certainly takes a toll – I was more tired after my last training walk than the one before it, despite more training in between them, because of the armour being worn. I also just received more armour that I’ll be wearing – some plate for my arms and shoulders – which adds probably 15-20 pounds by themselves. I’ll be doing a full weigh-in on my entire kit very soon so that everything’s accurate by the end of it all, mostly for my own interest.

In addition to all the gear we’ll be carrying – tent, food, cooking ware and health supplies – this armour will be a great strain across my back that I can’t share with the rest of my party. As I play D&D – fairly regularly again, starting just a couple months ago – every time our characters stop for the night I imagine how it’s going to feel to take off the armour…

… and I realize that they don’t, if they want to stay protected during that first watch.



The Final Roster

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Since the inception of the Quest for the Cure, we have seen a number of roster changes, for reasons ranging from personal to professional to health-related. It has been a long road – no pun intended – and when we bought our tickets last week, we had our final roster in mind.

On September 27th, Dan and Drew will be boarding a flight to Belfast.

This final roster change – bringing us to just two Wayfarers making the trip – does mean a few things will be changing. First and foremost, we won’t be able to hold watches; doing so while also trying to sleep enough for our physical activity levels is just impractical.

We will also be carrying the gear ourselves, but that might not make much of a change – we’ll have less gear to carry, simply because we have fewer people in tents, fewer people eating food, so on and so forth. We’ll still have to carry all of our cooking gear between the two of us, but we can be more selective about what we bring even for that.

To answer a few questions we’ve gotten, though:

Yes, our goal is still $100,000. We are not lowering our fundraising goal, and with your help – everyone reading this – I am confident that we can still reach it.

No, there is no chance that we will cancel the trip. No chance at all. We are committed – and not only because those plane tickets are non-refundable!

We leave Toronto on September 27th, and return on October 28th. We’ll be walking for about 24 of the days in between there, taking a few days off here and there to recuperate and rest our legs. A more detailed itinerary will be posted closer to our flight, I promise – we want anyone in the area to come out and say hello!

What was once akin to the Fellowship has come down to just a pair of guys making their way, but that didn’t stop Frodo and Sam and it won’t stop us.


Betting Against the Wayfarers

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“The trip is impossible.”

We have been hearing this since the beginning. Between family members and friends, I don’t think we had a better than 50% faith rate – and, to be fair, most of them thought it was a crackpot idea of mine that would fade into obscurity and become a matter of “hm, that would have been neat, eh?”

I’m sure they are all still shocked that I even bought the plane ticket, much less intend to step into the highway between Belfast and Larne three weeks from tomorrow.

When I told a friend this, they said I should tell people to put their money where their mouth is – and this is what we’re doing now?

Think we’re going to fail? Here’s your chance to tell us while also supporting charity.

We’re starting a betting pool. Minimum donation of $10, and you choose a day: anything from September 28th (our first day of walking) to October 27th (the day before our flight). This is the last day you think we’ll be walking, not the day you think we’ll wake up and say “no more!” – just to be absolutely clear.

There is no maximum contribution. Want to bet $50? Bet $50. Want to bet $100? Fantastic!

When we win If we win, 100% of the money goes to the Association for International Cancer Research at the end of October. The Wayfarers themselves will not be taking any of the money, obviously.

If we do not finish the trip, whoever chooses the last day that we will walk will get 50% of the pot. This 50% will be split between as many people as choose it; if you’re the only one to choose October 4th, you get the whole amount. If you and three others do, you each get a quarter. The other 50% of the pot will be going to AICR. Everyone wins!

If you’re interested, contact Paul ( any time before midnight on September 28th – you have three weeks to get in on this. If you seriously think that we’re going to fail in our Quest, put your money where your mouth is and contribute to charity while buying yourself a chance to win a bit of money on top of your bragging rights.

Some things to help your bets:

We are travelling roughly 27km (or 17mi) a day. We have some lighter days, but only one harder day – the first day, Belfast to Larne, which is 34km.

We stay in beds ten times by the current schedule:

Larne, evening of September 29th
Glasgow, evening of October 1st
Fort William, evening of October 8th
Inverness, evening of October 12th
Perth, evening of October 20th
Stirling, evening of October 22nd
Edinburgh, evenings of October 25th, 26th and 27th

Obviously, injuries or just finding the walk too hard could slow those down – I don’t think they will, but keep that in mind. That’s why we’re accepting bids even on October 26th and 27th – days that we should be done. You want to bet against us that hard? Go for it.

I would wish you luck, but that would be betting against us, and I don’t do that sort of thing!


Words from the Road: Glasgow, part 2

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Getting sick is never convenient, but sometimes the timing is worse than others. Anyone who has come down with a head cold on the first day of a vacation will understand my current predicament.

A head cold I could have kept walking through. Food poisoning, unfortunately, I couldn’t. Worse, my bout of food poisoning seems to have brought friends–low blood pressure, light-headedness, weakness, and dizziness that have kept us from moving on with the trip for the past two days even though my stomach feels better.

I’ve been told to stay on bedrest for a few days and then to stick to “1-2 weeks without heavy exertion.” Walking isn’t hard when you’re well, but I’m pretty sure that 20-30 km a day counts as exertion in any doctor’s books (and may be beyond what I can do right now) so we’re currently reassessing our options.

We’re planning on staying in Glasgow for the next few days and then travelling to Inverness on the 6th of October. We’re going to skip Fort William altogether. In Inverness, we’ll be setting up a home base and then walking every day without our packs. This will give me time to recover and rebuild strength even as we continue with the walk and, hopefully, make up for some of the mileage we’ve already lost.

At this point, it is entirely possible that we won’t be walking the full distance that we originally set ourselves. It is certain that we won’t be walking the original route–it’s already too late for that, even if we left Glasgow tomorrow.

But don’t mistake realism for giving up.

Provided that I am fully recovered, which seems likely, we will be walking the second half of our route as planned. We’re also going to be making up as much lost distance as we can before then, by walking within cities and by making day trips and shorter overnight hops around Glasgow and other cities.

This means we’ll be able to post more ‘blogs than expected because we’ll have internet access more often. I’ll be talking both about my recovery and about what I’m learning in the UK; about travel, adventures, and the differences our modern world makes in all of those things.

I hate being sick and I hate what this has meant for the trip. I miss my girlfriend, I miss my family, I miss my friends. I even (though I never thought I’d say this!) miss my work. Goodness knows, I miss the galumphing dog that loves to greet me with a headbutt and a wagging tail every evening. But to give up and return home now would mean betraying the Quest, and we’re not about to do that.

Wish us luck and send good thoughts. Don’t forget to check here every couple of days (or Facebook, or Twitter!), and please do tell your friends and family about two crazy Canadians who are doing everything in their power to make it through a cursed Quest to raise money for something that has touched us all.

Remember to donate when you can. Every single dollar we see go into those accounts is helping to motivate us.

You are all fantastic. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for the outpouring of support we’ve been getting and I look forward to seeing and speaking with you soon.


Better Know Our Route: Loch Lomond

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A little under a week after we leave our home country on a long flight to Ireland, we will be taking our first day of rest beside the freshwater lake – or “loch” – Lomond.

Loch Lomond is purportedly the most beautiful place in Scotland.  Just a day’s walk outside of the city of Glasgow, it’s the largest lake in Great Britain by surface area and second-largest by water volume, beaten by our second major loch of the trip, the famous Ness.

With songs, poems and prose all written about Loch Lomond it is one of the places I am personally looking forward to most on this trip.  As a photographer I am hoping to capture some images like the one to the right – and with three mornings spent at her shores, it seems I may get my chance.

We’ll likely arrive at Loch Lomond the night after we leave Glasgow’s city centre, spending a night at the southern tip before starting the hike along its 39km (24mi) length; the A82 highway runs along its western shore which is conveniently the side of the loch that we want to be on when heading towards Fort William.  After our first day of walking the shores we’ll spend a full day there, resting our legs and enjoying the scenery… and maybe singing a song or two.

The Bonnie Banks o’ Loch Lomond is one of the most famous songs known around the world as a Scottish anthem, first published during the Scottish romantic movement almost a century after the Jacobite rebellions of the 18th century but popular before it.  Rumours persist of it being written by a Scottish nationalist (possibly from the 1745 Jacobite rebellion itself) imprisoned in England, who writes of his desire to return home.

Oh, ye’ll tak’ the high road, and I’ll tak’ the low road,
And I’ll be in Scotland afore ye;
But me and my true love will never meet again
On the bonnie, bonnie banks o’ Loch Lomond.

The “high road,” or highway, refers to a normal road… where as the “low road” is supposed to refer to the path that a soul takes to return home.  In Scottish folk-lore, the faeries that inhabit the British Isles are supposed to bring souls back to Scotland along a road of their construction through their half-worlds, and the story goes that the soldier knew he would die in an English prison but wanted his love to know.

In addition to being the largest loch in Scotland, Lomond holds the most islands – most think 30-36, though some centuries-old reports go as high as 60.  The magnificent views afforded by the loch’s shores also include the mountain Ben Lomond, pictured above; this most southern of the Munros (a collection of mountains in Scotland collected by Sir Hugh Munro) is almost a kilometre high and can be seen as far away as Glasgow on a clear day.

Though we’re certainly not planning on it, with luck we’ll have plenty of those – and Ben Lomond will provide for us a goal as we start out of Glasgow on a sunny Tuesday morning next October.

While walking along the river today, the rain was light enough that I could pull out my camera and get shots of the mist-covered mountains, one of which I’ve climbed.

Even though this isn’t working out the way I hoped, the way I planned, it is truly amazing and something I recommend to everyone.

Have an adventure.

Do something crazy.

In costume, if you can bear it, because it makes people really willing to talk to you.

A few pictures from the past week appear behind the jump:

Cows and mountains: Scotland in a picture. (Not really, but it’s so pretty!)

Pretty sure I took this at Stirling railway station. We’ll be back on the 22nd!

I refer to this, a part of our regular route within Inverness, as the “Althing spot” – a perfect place for a meeting of 40-odd people.

I wish both of us could have been in this picture. Perfect book cover or what?

Culloden Avenue, a long pedestrian path leading to Culloden House, has these amazing sculptures along the way, all chosen in theme by local schoolchildren. I thought this was an appropriate one to grab a picture of.

I also love dragons.


Can’t forget the dragon’s children. These sculptures are fantastic.

The original estate that stood near the Culloden Moor battlefield in 1746, this gigantic and beautiful manor house, has been turned into what I am sure is an exorbitantly expensive hotel. I still want to stay there.

We climbed a mountain, Craig Dunain. It wasn’t the largest mountain in the area, but it was tiring enough!

Here are the mountains I was talking about up above, there. I love this country.

We found a hollowed-out tree. Who could resist such temptation?

After yesterday’s rain, the river is swollen but beautiful.

More soon!