His name is Nicholas Crane.
I discovered that while browsing the travel section in Waterstones this morning, my ferry tickets couldn't be located which meant I had some time to kill in Oban. Unfortunately it also meant that my main activity (trying to remember that guy's name from Coast) was solved.
Nicholas Crane apparently found, with his brother, something called the pole of inaccesibility in central Europe in 1986. I assume he means the Eurasian pole of inaccesibility which is actually in Kazahkstan, just North West of the Chinese border, go past the chickens then turn left at the combine harvester. Going by wikipedia, its the farthest point from the ocean on a contintent's land mass or sometimes just because its miles away from civilisation, a bit like Oban then.
Other notable things Crane has achieved is a 10,000 kilometre solo walk from Cape Finisterre to Istanbul, the book he wrote (Clear Waters Rising: A Mountain Walk Across Europe) won the Thomas Cook Travel Book Award. More recently, he was also spotted by me on a ferry going to Mull then jogging in Oban.
And what have I been doing in place of trying to remember what Nicholas Crane's name is? Well I cannot lie, I've been drinking lager. Its a sordid tale that started in O'Donnel's at about 7pm, an Irish theme bar which is nothing if not keen being as there was only a couple of people in yet it was still dishing out the fiddle-di-de and being as Irish as it could, even although no one there gave a shit. Then onto the Regent Hotel's cellar bar, which is actually next door under another hotel which has since closed down, or might be flats. It was while in that bar I found out Scotland were playing Macedonia at football, I would tell you what the score was but I seriously couldn't give a crap, I think we got beat, which is a good bet because its what normally happens.
From there I moved to the Columba Hotel's public bar. Oh dear, scrap the smoking ban for here, it smelled horribly of wee. I mean, what would you rather have assaulting you're olfactory functions, fag-reek or pish? I'd rather have fag-reek and secondary smoke be damned.
I know you're counting, so far its only three lagers and do you know? You're absolutely correct, except you're not, because I had two at O'Donnel's, the lack of interest in the fiddle-de-di was well countered by the fact they served food which is always a quandary, does one waste time with food or does one carry on drinking, doing both is only an option in the afternoon, in the evening? Time is running out god-damnit! It took me a pint of Carlsberg to figure this out.
I went for one in a place called The Creel which was rubbish, on entering the premises there seemed to be no staff, this is fine for a bit, but after five minutes it becomes a chore. Eventually, a young lady turned up and said, 'can I help you?' to which I replied, 'no, I'm fine, I just came in to stand for a while...' I didn't say that, she was bigger than me, I actually ordered another lager, which lets be honest, is far more agreeable than a punch in the face.
After that, I decided, on account of having to be on another fucking ferry at the crack of dawn tomorrow, I should probably retire for the evening, via The Lorne Bar for one last pint.
All these bars are in Oban, I dare say they're much better on any night other than a Tuesday (I know O'Donnel's is great fun over the weekend with live music and The Lorne Bar has great food.) The Creel is shit every day of the week.
I saw no one famous today although the lady who served me my bacon roll on the 10am ferry looked a lot like Claire from Steps. It's a funny thing about Claire from Steps, she found, along with her fellow bandmates, the pole of unacceptable pop, in fact, not just one but several...
And not just in Europe either...