The Vital Spark was the old Puffer or coastal steamer made famous both on the telly and in book form for it’s role with Parahandy the irascible skipper and his crew as they delivered coal and general supplies up and down the west coast of Scotland.
She still exists and is currently rusting away against the harbour wall at Inverary on Loch Fyne where we made the most of the today’s rare sunshine on a chill late October ride.
Now if that big geezer leaning against the barrier would just move over we might get a better shot of the puffer but there’s no point asking eight stone Helen to move him along. On closer inspection there’s no need – looks like he is doing his own version of the ‘Vital Spark’ —
We had better luck up the road with Ben Cruachan – there are no big geezers getting in the way of this shot —
H-mmm – spoke too soon – where did this big lump and his Strom come from —
He get’s everywhere these days – at least he was smiling when the frugal Strom left him with half a tank of fuel after the 140 odd mile ride and enough dosh to pay for the ferry home across Cuan Sound as the late afternoon shadows lengthened on the day after the clocks were turned back an hour to official Winter Time —
We almost made it home before thecouncil gritters came scattering their road salt far and wide – almost – we were just a few miles from the ferry with temperatures hovering around a balmy twelve degrees when we were showered with the lethal rust provoking stuff. Hopefully a few minutes washdown with the hose by the backdoor will have saved the day 🙂