The Best Vacation I Took With the Man I Love – September 2014

Emma Bridgewater loving cup

Emma Bridgewater loving cup

My husband (aka Bongo Man) and I have been married a long time. Here’s an Emma Bridgewater loving cup I commissioned to celebrate the fact – I’ll leave you to do the maths.

In 2014 we bought a vintage caravan off EBay and went on a tour of Scotland to research my third novel – SCOTCH ON THE ROCKS (published this spring). In particular I wanted to visit Holy Loch where the USS Proteus had been anchored, servicing nuclear subs in the early sixties. Vital details in my novel, and I wanted to get it right.

We started out at 5am on September 6th, Bongo Man’s birthday. The 350 mile drive to Scotland is a long one, especially if you’re towing a caravan. We finally reached the shores of Loch Lomond later that same day and set up camp. The setting was idyllic and my heart swelled because I was with the man I love and my feet were on Scottish soil, my own country. One I had left when I was eleven years old but which forever remains in my heart.

In fact, it was so inspiring that I got ideas for my next Scottish-themed novel – HEART OF THE HIGHLANDS – while exploring Castle Stalker, Appin and surrounding area. Making the most of the weather we travelled as far north as Oban and Fort William and then headed back down to the west coast. We couldn’t  believe our luck when we rolled up the blinds each morning to find it was still glorious weather.

Castle Stalker, inspiration for my fourth novel - HEART OF THE HIGHLANDS

Castle Stalker, inspiration for my fourth novel – HEART OF THE HIGHLANDS

Next stop Gourock and the ferry over to Dunoon. Or, going DOON THE WATER, as they say in Scotland. We drove along the coast of Holy Loch and visited Hunter’s Quay where some of the most voluble anti-nuclear protests took place in 1961, and the scene in my novel where the heroine’s aunt is hosed off the anchor chain of the Proteus, setting a chain of events in motion. It was there, on the side of Holy Loch that I found my perfect writers’ retreat. in an ideal world, I’d buy the house and spend most of my summers there – just as well we have our caravan as back up.

Romantic evenings, days spent exploring and afternoons writing – the perfect combination when spent with the man I love, my anchor man – Dave. I hate to spoil this idyll but we weren’t alone. Our Hahn’s Macaw, Jasper, came too and seemed to enjoy every minute of his road trip.

It’s simpler to take him along with us as trying to organise a parrot sitter is a nightmare. This summer we plan to spend another couple of weeks touring the west coast of Scotland in June and have our fingers crossed that the weather holds.

Maybe I should have called this post – travels with a parrot. There is a naughty parrot called PERSHING featured in SCOTCH ON THE ROCKS. He’s based on Jasper our Macaw, although infinitely worse behaved !!

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I’ve written in conjunction with the first birthday celebration of Isabella Anderson’s debut novel – THE RIGHT DESIGN

THE RIGHT DESIGN is on sale for $0.99, during the month of March – – – – – – – Purchase links

BlueHappyBirthdayAmazon US (Kindle)

Amazon US (Paperback)

Amazon – Canada

Amazon – UK

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About Lizzie Lamb

I write contemporary women's fiction mostly based in Scotland with hot heroes, feisty heroines and always a happy ending. Along with three other authors - Adrienne Vaughan, June Kearns and Margaret Cullingford - I formed the New Romantics Press under which all our books are published.

Posted on March 13, 2015, in Lizzie's Scribbles and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 25 Comments.

  1. Lizzie, what a fabulous post. I was getting all teary-eyed reading it! You, Bongo & Jasper are a terrific trio. I cannot wait to read your 3rd novel. You deserve all the success going! 🙂 Xx

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  2. newromanticspress

    Reblogged this on New Romantics 4 and commented:

    Just getting back into the blogging habit.

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  3. Thank you my lovely Jan. It was a fabulous holiday (made extra special because of the weather and lack of midges!!). Hope to repeat it again this summer. Third novel, getting there 🙂

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  4. Lovely post.
    Waiting ,with bated breath, for finished book.
    (I know it will be worth the wait!)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What a wonderfully inspiring post, Lizzie. It is sadly quite a rare thing to spend so long with the same husband and still be so in love 🙂 (my record was 7 years which was longer than the first attempt!!) I love the picture of the house you saw for your dream retreat, wouldn’t mind buying it myself.

    Really looking forward to your next book and I like the look of the possible cover. Thanks very much for sharing

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    • newromanticspress

      Thank you for commenting Sarah. It’s supposed to say thinking of lighting for a long time but just haven’t got round to it. Helping Isabella has meant I’ve had to get on with it. 👍👍

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  6. What a beautiful post, Lizzie! Thank you for sharing, and for being part of the book birthday celebration!

    Liked by 1 person

    • newromanticspress

      Isabella thank you for asking me to be part of your celebration. I hope my efforts have helped you to find some new readers. Blogs are hard work but rewarding when you see the finished product. 📝

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  7. Margaret Cullingford

    Aww, you old romantic, you! What a fabulous post, and holiday. Made me come over all nostalgic for mine and the Tedster’s holidays in times past.

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    • newromanticspress

      At least this time I didn’t smell of TCP or ointment after being eaten alive by the dreaded midges. A passion killer if ever there was one. Looking forward to a return trip this summer in June. Last time we went up to the highlands in June you could read a newspaper outdoors at 11 PM. Fabulous 😎

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  8. This is a lovely romantic post Lizzie. I enjoyed reading it. Scotland is the one place
    Dennis and I have wanted to visit and it’s still on our list of places to see.

    The best of luck with The Heart of the Highlands.

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    • newromanticspress

      Thank you for dropping by Cathy and for leaving a comment. Being Irish yourself you and Dennis would really love a tour of Scotland. If you get the weather there is no better place on earth.

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  9. I love your fantasy writers retreat, Lizzie. One day … Lovely post, sweetie. Congrats on your book, b’day, Isabella. 🙂 xx

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    • newromanticspress

      Thank you Sheryl it really is a wonderful place to write. The best bit is there is hardly any house work involved when you’re in a caravan. The only downside is the parrot who likes lots of attention. lol. Isn’t Isabella’s book cover great ?

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    • newromanticspress

      Thank you Maria. It was a fun post to write. I hope you are now feeling much better and that you will be picking up your quill one day very soon.

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  10. I am busy packing to go and squat in that writer’s retreat Lizzie, perfect. And what a romantic trio you guys are …and what better setting for romance, adventure and intrigue. Looking forward to the launch and reading your new one …#exciting!

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  11. Thanks Adrienne, I can just see New Romantics Press ensconced there and getting on with our novels. Might have to bring Joan along as chief cook and bottle washer. Can’t believe that we are thinking about our fourth novel – amazing achievement.

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  12. Lizzie, I too have a wonderful supportive husband called Dave 🙂 Although we can’t claim quite so many years as you two, we’re on twenty and counting!
    We too are hoping to get a caravan in a couple of years’ time and do a bit of exploring. Your trip sounded just the job!

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    • newromanticspress

      Daves are great husbands and supporters of writers! We’re off again in a few weeks – Cornwall this time. Can’t wait. And twenty years married is quite impressive these days 🙂

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  13. I can relate to this, Lizzie. My husband and I (and our dog) will be travelling back to the Outer Hebrides in our bus-with-a-woodstove for the second time this summer to research my new novel. Happy travelling! 🙂

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    • newromanticspress

      Excuse the delay in replying, I was at an awards ceremony last night – sadly, not as a nominee. Lol. Oh, would love to see your bus with a wood stove. Sounds fab. Happy holidays 😎

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Wonderful post. Congratulations! I’ve also been married for a long time, and I’m sure there have been ups and downs. Glad now it’s definitely looking up for you! Gorgeous pictures. I love the ‘retreat’ house, too 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • newromanticspress

      Thank you, Luccia 💖. We’re currently in the caravan touring Devon & Cornwall for book four. Dreadful weather, though!

      Like

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