Saturday, 18 May 2013

The last day at Loch Lomond

Today was the last day of the Loch Lomond Quilt Show and once more lovely visitors came, made gorgeous comments and I caught up with old friends and made new ones,. I met a lovely fellow blipper, Rosamund,  too. In fact the show proved a great place to meet up with many Blippers, some I knew already face to face and some I met for the first, but definitely not the last time!

Then it was time to pack up pack the car and turn for home! And I drove straight into one of the worst drives of my life. All was well while making my way to the M9 motorway. Approaching junction 4there,  it started to rain. By exit 2 I had to switch my windscreen wipers to their fastest setting. By the time I hit the Edinburgh City Bypass it was dark (at 6.30pm in May) and there were gigantic puddles on the road. The overhead signs said: heavy rain expected. Indeed! They were a bit behind the times! We were moving at around 30 miles/hour. Oh well, not far to go. I was very relieved to turn onto the A702 southwards.

And then it really started. The downpour was unbelievable. I have an unknown van driver to thank for making it home. He was in front of me and drove a big white van with all his lights blazing. Even so, all I could see was a vague white rectangle in front of me. The sides of the road and all road markings were indistinguishable in the gloom, thick fog and driving rain. Had he driven off the road I would have followed as there was nothing to show where it was. Water gushed over the road from the fields, came from above and was laying in lakes on the road. I have no idea how he saw anything. I certainly didn't.
When we reached Carlops village (only 5 miles from home) there were fire engines, fire and policemen everywhere and a river running from one side of the road to the other, although we couldn't see the houses on either side.  I suspect houses on the left hand side were in the process of being flooded. The white van made it through so I simply hoped I would too. I did.

Sadly I had leave the van to go south in when I turned eastwards to enter our little lane (3. 5 miles to go now!)... But it wasn't a little lane any more  Instead I was faced with a raging stream of water. Streaming fast in various directions. There were fountains in the road where this morning there had been potholes. Normally I would have stopped the car, put on my wellies and investigated how deep the water was. But stopping the car wasn't an option as I was simply too exhausted to open the door and get out. I was also afraid the car wouldn't start again. The only option was to simply hope, keep my fingers crossed, keep the car in gear and proceed. I don't scare easily but I was frightened out of my wits. There are no markings on this lane, only invisible walls and fences. I made it home and as I neared the gate I burst into tears! That was a first too!

Fortunately John had seen my headlights from the house, had opened the gates and the garage door and in I went. The rest of the evening passed in a haze of Euro songs and glasses of red wine while drifting in and out of sleep.

The pictures in this blip were all taken in the Riverside Parish Church. The last two are leaded windows installed in 1855 while the other two come from the Queen Margaret window I blogged previously about and date to 1945.

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