Robert in Lockdown – 18.6.20

Robert enjoys a swim in significantly warmer waters than he experienced earlier in lockdown.

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Whenever the time comes for me to return to my flat in Glasgow, I could be forgiven for glancing wistfully over my shoulder and humming Lochaber No More.

With all the gardening I have been doing over the last 11 weeks, however, including the story of the broken lawn mower, perhaps that should really be Lochaber No Mower. I’ll see myself out!

On a far more serious matter, however, a big thank you to all the readers who wrote last week to point out the faults with my dad’s golf swing in the photograph attached to the article.

He has played the game for the best part of 60 years and was horrified to discover I included that photo. He could clearly see that he was, I quote, ‘coming in too steep’.

All I know is that (between the two of us), we have furnished the river, the puggy line, the witch’s trails, and half of Leanachan forest with a couple of dozen Callaway Twos and a few Titleist Ones thrown in for good measure!

Talking of the river, I went for my second dip of the year in the River Lochy on Sunday. I was joined by my old school pal, Andrew MacGillivray, who also works in the music industry (as a sound engineer) and, like me, has seen all his gigs dry up due to the virus.

He has done sound for Tide Lines a number of times over the past year or so and we’ve had some hilarious experiences on the road to reminisce about on the banks of the Lochy with a couple of beers.

One such memory was a bizarre experience in the beautiful Cathedral city of Ely, Cambridgeshire. We were playing a festival down there and Andy was mixing the gig on a desk behind an audience of about a thousand in a marquee. It seemed like a good show to us so, on leaving the stage, we asked him how it had been for him.

He replied that it looked good but he could hardly hear us thanks to a group of dogs who had sat all round him as we started our first number and began barking! You couldn’t write it.

Anyway, back to our day at the river – and we were contemplating going in for a swim.

‘We won’t be in for long,’ I said confidently.

I was in a fortnight ago and it was still snow melt straight from the Ben.

Andy pointed downstream where there were a few kids splashing about happily in the shallow water.

‘It can’t be that cold!’ he said. And in we went.

‘We weren’t prepared for the current (which almost swept us down to Carrs Corner), but I can confirm that it had heated up significantly over the previous weeks of decent weather. Anyone wanting to go for a swim – now is the time!

If you happen to be swimming anywhere up near the golf club, give me a shout if you find any Callaway Twos or Titleist Ones!