Saturday, 18 April 2009
Auchterarder: 1st Day
Branches, White Moss Loch (4B pencil, watercolour, sketchbook)
We arrived at Shinafoot Studios around 4.30 on Friday night and after settling in, went out again looking for a good restaurant. Unfortunately, Auchterarder is something of a restaurant desert. we settled on an allegedly Italian place whose menu included only pizza and two other Italian dishes. My spaghetti all marinara was really well cooked, but I had to wait an age to find that out and overall the restaurant was uninspiring.
We came home up the windswept main street and paused for a moment to watch the local kids playing Toss the Dustbin Across the Road.
Today we split into two groups, one to check out the bridge at Kinkell, the other to walk up into the hills and find the quarry at Craig Rossie. I decided to follow on a little later (I'm really not an early morning person), taking the quarry route, but somewhere I took a wrong turning. Ending up on a long boring rock-strewn track, winding through freshly tilled and thus empty fields I emerged at a farm where all the domestic and farming detritus in the whole of Scotland had come to rest.
Or so I thought, but later I found that the rest of the area was a fly-tipper's paradise. There was a golf course and there were colossal prosperous-looking farms, and there were also car parts, Coke bottles, mattresses, sheets of corrugated iron, tractor tyres, car tyres, plastic bags, garden chairs, dead Xmas trees, in every ditch and hedgerow. The good folks of Perthshire should be desperately ashamed of themselves.
I came to White Moss Loch which boasted many water birds, although I could see few of them from the track that skirted part of the lake, but allowed access only by climbing over a pile of plastic tubing (various sizes) and ended at a breeze-block and corrugated asbestos building which had been bulldozed then allowed to crumble into the landscape.
I did this drawing while randy mallards chased one another round the lake and a swan came by looking for sandwiches, but I had none for him.