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Archive for March, 2012

Scotland long distance walks: Fife Coastal Path – part 3

From West and East Wemyss, I followed the shoreline past through a series of sea caves said to contain Neolithic carvings from 5000 years ago. I did not go inside as I get scare of the dark, I am only a wee cuddly toy and a bat may try to eat me.

Next to the caves is Macduff’s Castle which is in ruins.

The castle believed to be the second one on this site was in ruins.

The path leaves the coastline and heads through the industrial town of Buckhaven. This is the least attractive part of the Fife Coastal Path and the coastline of Buckhaven and Methil is now a construction yard for offshore wind farm pumps.

Passing through the urban areas of Buckhaven and Methil, I pass the golf course and come across the town of Lower Largo.

Totem-pole sculpture called the 'Malagan' in Lower Largo, created by local artist Alan Faulds.

Robinson Crusoe creator Alexander Selkirk came from Lower Largo.

Leaving Lower Largo, I trek up the 3km long beach of Largo Bay.

The long sandy shore of Largo Bay.

This beach was so quiet and the remoteness of the beach means that noone else was here. The beach had many shells on the sand, and also WWII defences.

The cliffs at the end of the beach form Kincraig Head.

I was admiring the view, it was so different from the jungles of Borneo.

The famous ‘Chain Walk’ is here, but the tide was in for me to climb the chains plus I had a heavy bag on that was a hundred times my own body weight.

Following the cliff and around the head point, I soon was soon able to see the village of Elie.

From the top of the cliffs, there are good views down to Elie.

After a wee bite to eat in the local tavern, I carried on to the next fishing village on my route.

St. Monan's Castle lay in ruins.

I came across another ruined castle before coming to up to the village of St. Monan.

The fishing village of St. Monan.

This little village of St. Monan claims to have the closest church to the sea in the UK.

This church is right on the shoreline.

The grassy moulds outside St. Monan used to be industrial with salt pans. A windmill still stands here that once powered the salt pan houses.

This windmill was used for the salt pan houses.

Moving on I reached Anstruther which is the largest of the East Neuk fishing villages.

Anstruther is the largest of the East Neuk fishing villages.

Anstruther was once a thriving fishing village but now relies on tourism. The Scottish Fisheries Museum is here.

I was enjoying this wee fishing village.

Anstruther is famous for its fish and chips with many awards being won here by it local fish and chip shops. I decided to try one. Not the usual diet for a cuddly toy monkey but I had earnt the treat.

Anstruther is famous for it fish and chips.

After my fish and chips lunch, I headed off towards Crail.

To be continued….

For more information on this leg of the Fife Coastal Path please visit:

http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/fife-stirling/east-wemyss-lower-largo.shtml

http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/fife-stirling/largo-st-monans.shtml

http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/fife-stirling/st-monans-anstruther.shtml

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Scotland long distance walks: Fife Coastal Path – part 2

I was on my way in my trek.

Leaving North Queensferry, I was approaching the old industrial area of the Firth of Forth.

This area used to be heavy in industry, now it lays in waste.

The path follows a old industrial area.

The path follows the old industrial Inner Bay at Inverkeithing.

This area had an sense of history.

This bay told a story of industrial Britain history.

This old jetty was disused.

The Forth Rail Bridge could be seen behind me.

It was possible to see the bridges behind me with good views back to the Forth Bridge.

Soon I came in Dalgety Bay, which had just been exposed as a site for radioactive dumping during the war.

This church became disuse around 1830.

The path headed inland to avoid the gas terminal. The path rejoined the coast at the little fishing village of Aberdour.

This harbour was a good place for lunch.

I stopped here for a little lunch.

The path passes through woods with this waterfall.

The path followed the coastline.

Soon I came across Seafield Tower, I heard seals here but never saw any.

This ruined castle dates back to the 16th century.

The Fife Coastal Path then passes through Kirkcaldy. But, luckly for me, the tide was out so I walked along the beach rather then the 1.5 km promenade of Kirkcaldy seafront.

The tide was out so I walked along the beach.

At the far end of Kirkcaldy bay was Ravenscraigs Castle built for King James II.

This ruin castle was engulfed by Kirkcaldy.

This castle was engulfed by Kirkcaldy town but was a pleasent surprise to see in the town.

Me at Ravenscraig Castle.

I stopped here for a bite to eat and coffee using my camping stove.

This castle was big and impressive.

I had a good look around.

This castle was in ruins but still impressive.

The castle gave a superb vantage point along the coastline.

Overlooking the beach at Kirkcaldy.

Through Ravenscraig Park was the dovecot.

This old dovecot was used to provide meat for the castle.

Eventually the path continues through a tunnel that has been cut into the rocks.

The tunnel emerge on to Dysart Harbour.

At the other end of the tunnel was the village of Dysart.

Dysart Harbour was picturesque with the famous restored Harbourmaster's House in the background.

Dysart is famous for it newly restored 16th century Harbourmaster’s House, a listed building.

Outside Dysart was this old coal mine that shut down just after the miners strike of the 1980s.

This old mine was closed in the 1980s.

The path follows across an attractive bay, with the cottages of  West Wemyss visible at the far end.

The bay led to the village of West Wemyss.

I stopped here for a snack.

The weather was sunny.

I had been on my wee feet all day and the stitches in my poorly cotton feet were coming apart. So, I needed to set up camp for the night and sew myself up again.

The sun was setting and time to pitch up camp.

I was almost halfway on my long trek.

To be continued….

For more information on this leg of the Fife Coastal Path please visit:

http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/fife-stirling/n-q-burntisland.shtml

http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/fife-stirling/burntisland-east-wemyss.shtml


Scotland long distance walks: Fife Coastal Path – part 1

Now that I had been in Scotland for eight years, I decided to tackle some of the long distance walks of Scotland. It is my plan to walk the famous West Highland Way (151 kms) sometime this summer which takes in the scenery of Glencoe and Loch Lomand. Eventuatally I am going to walk the Cape Wrath Trail (326 kms). The trail is mostly unmarked and passes through remote countryside that is extremely wild and rugged terrain. This trail is said to be Britains’s toughest walking route.

This website lists the long distance walks of Scotland:

http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/long-distance-routes.shtml

To make the most of the heat wave that we are experiencing in Scotland at the moment, I decided on a mini long distance trek this week. I decided to do the Fife Coastal Path from North Queensferry to St. Andrews (98 kms). My plan was to be self sufficent in carrying my own gear and camping out in the wild – no hotels or B&B. I had to carry five days supply of rations and water as well as my camping gear. I left on Sunday and came back yesterday. So it took me four days. I had planned on five days. So I was able to walk within my plan, not bad for the small cuddly toy that I am.

A map of the route.

This photograph shows my packing. The packed weighed 25kgs. That is 100 times my own body weight! When I came back yesterday it was 16kgs.

My kit consisting of five day supplies.

Large water bottles are not included in this picture which made up the bulk of my weight. Rations were compact style purchased from camping shops and army surplus stores. I only packed four days of food rations as I intended on eating pub meals at the East Neuk fishing villages.

The walk starts in the small village of North Queensferry.

The village takes its name from Saint Margaret of Scotland, the wife of King Malcolm III of Scotland.  She established the village to ensure there would be regular ferry crossings across the Firth of Forth for the benefit of pilgrims travelling to St. Andrews.

The Fife Coastal Path starts in North Queensferry under the famous Forth Rail Bridge.

The Forth Rail Bridge was opened in 1890 and is a total length of 2,528 metres. The bridge connects Edinburgh to Fife over the Firth of Forth.

The bridge was nominated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site last year and is now awaiting approval on the list.

It was a hot sunny day.

A sign next to a well marked the start of the path.

A sign marked the start of the Fife Coastal Path.

The well was used by travellers and horse carts in the old days.

The start of the Fife Coastal Path.

I was eager to start the walk.

With my suncream on, I was ready.

As I progress up the path, I looked back onto North Queensferry and the bridge.

The bridge shadows over the village of North Queensferry.

I had a long way to go and a heavy bag!

To be continued….

For more information on this leg of the Fife Coastal Path please visit:

http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/fife-stirling/n-q-burntisland.shtml


Competition – Where’s Monkey?

Tonight, we at the OFFICIAL Sgt. Monkey website are running a competion.

As you know, our wee monkey is a very keen traveller – having scuba dive around the world, climb Mount Everest and enjoyed seeing the sights and sounds of many cultures.

All you have to do to win this competition prize is to guess where is Sgt. Monkey in our photograph below:

He is on a train but where is our wee monkey in this photograph?

The winner of our competition will receive a email “signed” photograph of our wee cuddly toy monkey.

Please leave your answer as an comment and the judges will reveal the answer and the winner on April 30th 2012.

The winner will then be sent the “signed” photograph of our wee monkey. A prize surely worth winning.

So get guessing and all the best of luck.

The webmaster team

N.B. A clue to the place and country of this photograph can be found on one of our wee monkey previous travel blogs.


The Monkey Party 2012 Budget statement

Today was the coalition government budget statement.

We listened to the chancellor of the exchequer Budget speech and whilst we welcome measures to reduce tax and to encourage growth, it is not enough. The Budget today was all cockle-a-doo-doo nonsense. Just nothing more than a small sticky plaster over the devestating financial problems that this country faces. The Budget today was typical give with one hand, take with the other hand. The poor got poorer and the rich got richer under the Budget today.

We were given exclusive access to a secret cabinet meeting dossier. The dossier is from a financial review meeting held last month at Downing Street. The meeting was chaired by the Prime Minister David Cameron.

The secret dossier that we recieved from a government insider.

As you see, the dossier resembles child art work. It is obvious our Prime Minister is clueless about how to solve our country financial problems.

Is this the best that our Prime Minister can produce?

Obviously, our PM is clueless and is not under control of our country problems. As you can see, our very own PM is doodling in his office!!!!

While our PM doodles, the country finances are in a mess. Have a look at this chart.

This chart clearly explains the problems of our country finances.

So what is the solution to the Europe debt crisies, high taxes, the ever rising unemployment, increasing cost of living etc…? Well, the Monkey Party has the solution.

We have a plan for growth!

We have a plan for jobs!

We have a plan for tax cuts!

So what is our plan?

Our plan is simple, we are going to send a cuddly toy to the surface of moon by the end of the decade and safely bring him back to planet Earth.

We will send a cuddly toy to the surface of the moon by the end of the decade and will safely bring him back.

That is our plan for growth!

Let us explain….

By sending a British cuddly toy to the moon, this will require research into the sciences. We will develop new technologies that we can trade with overseas. Oversea countries will want to buy our new advances.

Our country national debt is £4.6 trillion. We can only pay off this debt if we generate new industries in our country. The cuddly toy moon landing project will produce the new industies that our country needs. With new supersonic engines and super conductor computers, we will be selling “Made in UK” products all over the world.

The prototype moon landing module for our proposed cuddly toy moon landing project. Technology developed from this Airfix model will be traded overseas.

Unemployment in the UK is currently 2.8 million. The proposed cuddly toy moon landing project requires a work force of approximately 2.8 million workers. Everyone will have a job when the Monkey Party is in power.

It is forecast that the cuddly toy moon landing project will cost £2.4 trillion. That is a lot!

So how are we going to pay for the cuddly toy moon landing project?

Are we going to raise taxes I hear you cry. NO, NO, NO and absolutly not!

We will not raise taxes for the cuddly toy moon landing project.

Read my lips, no more tax rises.

Instead, we will cull Tory MPs in Parliament. It has been reported that Tory MPs are claiming £2.4 trillion in coffee expenses in the Houses of Parliament coffee shop. So, we will cull all elected Tory MPs and the saved money will be diverted to the cuddly toy moon landing project.

So as you can clearly see, the cuddly toy moon landing project is affordable without the need for tax rises.

The investment in to this project will generate £9.7 trillion by 2020. That is more than enough to pay off our national debt of £4.6 trillion. The £5.1 trillion extra will be use to pay for tax cuts for everyone. YES! EVERYONE – rich or poor, we will all get tax cuts.

VAT reduced to 2.5%.

Income tax reduced to 10%

The success from the cuddly toy moon landing project will put the GREAT back into Britain. Oversea countries will continue to trade with us, buying our new technologies and science.

This chart demonstrates the predicted growth of our GDP after the cuddly toy moon landing project.

This chart clearly shows how the UK GDP will accelerate after the cuddly toy moon landing project.

Vote for the Monkey Party in the 2015 General Elections and put a monkey into Parliament.

Put the cuddly toy on the moon and see the change.

Lets get Britain growing again.

The Monkey Party secretary


The Monkey Party 2012 Pre-Budget statement

This Wednesday, the coalition government will be presenting to the public the 2012 Budget review of our country finances.

Our team of financial experts from the Monkey Party will be analyzing the Budget review as it is read out. We expect as per usual, that the Budget will be a load of crap and horse poo. At 1500 hours on Wednesday the 21st, we the Monkey Party will be presenting our very own Budget review that will highlight our plan to help to revitalise the devestating country finances. We at the Monkey Party have the answers to the Europe debt problems, we have the plans to help businesses grow and we at the Monkey Party have the ability to cut taxes for ALL.

Our Budget review will be online at 1500 hours on Wednesday.

Our wee monkey is busy studying the country finances on his laptop.

N.B. The Monkey Party is the fastest growing policical party in UK. We were formed in 2010. In the 2010 General Elections, we got 2 votes (not bad for our first elections). Then in 2011, we achieved 5 votes in the Scottish Elections – that is a 150% increase in our share of votes.

The Monkey Party believes that a cuddly toy monkey will be a better Prime Minister than any of the usual LIBLABCON nonsense PMs.

Vote Monkey and put a stuffed one into power.

The Monkey Party secretary


Monkey’s secret recipe for the lads in the military!

They say an army marches on its stomach so tonight I am going to tell you what I feed my troops with.

An nutritional balanced meal comprising of five portions of fruit and vegetables is just what a hungry soldier requires prior to battle.

Sausages is the tradition meal in my own battalion. I am telling you how to cook a sausage and serve it under the false disguise of a nutritional meal.

You need to buy the cheapest sausage going. Tescos basic sausages are 39p for eight and consists of just 38% pork! The rest is processed crap. Sainsburys also sells 38% processed crap sausages as well.

To fry the sausage, use industrial grade cooking oil such as North Sea Brent Crude Oil. The same oil as to what you would fill your car up with.

Overcook the sausages by 10 minutes at least, so the sausage looks revolting and inedbile.

DO NOT cook any vegetables as modern day soldiers don’t require them and thus are exempt from the five portions a day guidelines. Remember our soldiers get their vitamins from drinking vast quantities of beer.

If you do make the mistake of cooking vegetables by accident, don’t worry as noone in the cookhouse will eat them anyway!

Next, serve the sausage with a mouldy looking baked potato. The more gray the texture the worst it will be for our young lads in the forces.

Yummy food served in the barracks.

Enjoy your ONE sausage as their are no seconds. We are skint!

Next send your malnourish lads to Afghanistan.