…Gribun Rocks in Mull in winter… an SAS course for trainee bank clerks…

…half a century ago, this ol’ scribbler was a Trainee Master of the Financial Universe in the Clydesdale & North of Scotland Bank in Tobermory on the Scottish Hebridean Island of Mull… God’s chosen country, and home to some of the friendliest people on the planet… as a young lad in the Bank, it was my duty (read ‘privilege’) from time to time to go around the island in the mobile office… in those days ‘mobile banking’ had NUTHIN to do with telephones, Mabel… we were a bank office on wheels… the island of Mull is among the most beautifully ‘scaped places I’ve ever known in all my global travels… I recall the mobile office driver, a Mister Johnston, a grand man, six feet plus, always clad in typical ‘sensible’ thick tweed suit and shoes made somewhere in the Glasgow shipyards, I reckon… prob’ly then in his sixties, and never without a pipe in his mouth, although rarely did I ever see him light it… great fun to travel with around the island villages dispensing our good solid Scottish banking services… but… and here’s the but... sum’times, in winter, the one-track roads became icy, snow-laden, and treacherous… and the vehicle required snow-chains… all very well and good until we approached a place called the Gribun Rocks… here’s what it looks like in summer…

gribun

…imagine what it transforms into during the gale-strewn storms we sum’times had to negotiate… on the inside a sheer rock face, from which from time to time would tumble a loose rock, and the occasional careless-footed sheep… on the distaff side, the roiling sea, belting waves against these Gribun Rocks, thrashing spray well up and over the van… the wind battering the broad sides of our vehicle… scary?… you betcha!… scary, and then some… Mister Johnson gripped the driving wheel as if it were there to break, and eased us around the half mile or so of the twisty, winding road… I learned much of my stock of Gaelic curse words during these episodes… on occasion, having traversed one way through the Rocks, discretion became the better part of bankerly valour, and the reverse trip was a long detour up through a lonely and deserted Glen More… there’s only so much Gaelic swearwords to learn in one outing… lessons available each stormy winter by the good graces of the Gribun Rocks in Mull in winter… an SAS course for trainee bank clerks... see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!…

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10 Comments

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10 responses to “…Gribun Rocks in Mull in winter… an SAS course for trainee bank clerks…

  1. Gaelic swear words. Any idea where I can learn them? From Belgium without moving?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow! It looks challenging even in reasonable weather.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ken MacAulay

    I recall many a hairy moment around Gribun and also elsewhere on those roads, Seumas. My driver was Alex Yuill, who must have succeeded Mr. Johnson, but he usually sat and read his paper while I did all the driving. A great experience. Thanks for the memories!

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  4. It looks amazing – and I’m sure was completely terrifying in winter. Many thanks for sharing those memories:)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That must be high on the list of the most dangerous roads to drive in winter, Seumas. 🙂 — Suzanne

    Liked by 1 person

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