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"World tour of Scotland" at www.nigelandkathyinscotland.blogspot.com

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

September 19th 2016

The MV Catriona - a low carbon hybrid vessel- takes over from the trusty MV Loch Tarbert on the Lochranza-Claonaig route

Friday, 9 September 2016

Carol, Alan and Oscar

Carol and Alan Haddington will be well-known to many of you reading this blog. Since September 2012 they have come to Lochranza two or three times a year to look after the campsite and give Nigel and myself opportunities to get a break. From April this year, they have been assistant wardens here, living in their elegant Elddis Affinity 550 caravan with Oscar their 10 year old chocolate Labrador. In their mainland lives Carol is a nurse and Alan was an architect until retiring last year.

We’re delighted that they will be returning to Lochranza next spring, but before they leave us for the winter months I asked them a few questions about their summer season working here:

Me: What do you enjoy most about being a campsite warden?
Carol & Alan: Meeting people most of all, but also the work in general because it’s varied. Alan: I also enjoy the logistics and planning.
(My comment: Careful planning about where to situate arrivals is important to ensure that everyone has a positive experience. The daily site plan needs regular updating as people change, extend and sometimes cancel bookings.)

Me: What do you like least about being a campsite warden?
Carol: Dealing with people who ignore advice because you can see that they have made a situation worse for themselves.
Alan: Yes, dealing with people who break the rules. (Doesn’t happen too often fortunately.)

Me: What are your favourite things to do on Arran when you’re not working?
Alan: Eating. I love getting out sampling the local food and drink.
Carol: Two special days out for me were firstly doing the King’s Caves walk and secondly going to Skipness- we went over as foot passengers on the Lochranza-Claonaig ferry and walked along the coast to the Seafood Cabin, enjoying the views of Arran.

Me: Has living in a caravan for more than four months been a problem?
Alan: Only tripping over Oscar.
Carol: I miss a bath but we get to go swimming at the Auchrannie regularly.

Me: What changes have you noticed since you first came to the campsite?
Carol & Alan:  Continuous improvement.
Alan: Being here for the summer I’ve noticed the changes in the people who come to the campsite at different times of year, for example there are lots of families in large tents in July. Now, in September, there are a lot of couples and some solo travellers in motorhomes and caravans.

Me: Would you recommend being a campsite warden?
Carol: You’ve got to love dealing with people.
Alan: You need to do your research and go in with your eyes open. Living an outdoor, active life changes you. You notice the influences of the weather and the time of day more.