Day 19: LEAVING PIPER’S PIT
It was 5:40am when we awoke. We knew we had a very long day of driving ahead of us. But I was also anxious about the flattening tire on our rear right, which I actually started paying attention to since Fort William and even Inverness to a lesser degree. It was just now it was becoming pretty obvious that the one tyre was noticeably flatter than the rest.
I wasn’t sure whether to find a petrol stop in town to at least fill up the tire pressure, or whether to take time to go to the Glasgow Airport to work with Europcar since we already had paid for chips and flat tires in our rental at 4 pounds per day for the entirety of the rental (that’s no chump change).
Nonetheless, with all the stuff we had to pack and get ready, it wouldn’t be until about 7:10am when we finally got to the car park. Then, we were headed out where the city of Glasgow was still relatively quiet considering it was Sunday morning.
As I was following the GPS towards the nearest gas stop, I apparently had missed a turn. And so in trying to backtrack, I tried to figure out a way to U-turn or at least do what the GPS was telling me. However, somehow, in our haste to make that U-turn, we ended up going the wrong way on a freeway offramp!
As soon as I realized my mistake (just before entering the M8 the wrong way), we pulled over to the emergency lane, then quickly did a three-point turn to go back the way we came. We got strange looks from other motorists who noticed our faux pas, and I guess it was fortunate that no one happened to be on the off ramp when we were going the wrong way. That would have been disastrous!
Eventually, we just decided to forsake the petrol stop in Glasgow itself, and decided to look for a different gas stop that would be more convenient to locate along the motorway headed south towards Conwy, which was our next destination.
At least we would be out of the city that Rowdy Roddy Piper (former WWE superstar in the 80s) supposedly hailed from. And while I had this image of bagpipe-playing Scots in kilts, the city was remarkably very modern yet had that hint of an interesting history sprinkled throughout. And so it was that we would say good-bye to the origin of Piper’s Pit and be on our way out of Scotland.
At 7:40am, we found a rest stop where there was a BP station. However, I saw that they were charging something like 1.46 pound per litre, which was ridiculously expensive. So I opted not to fill up here (I still had a little less than 3/4 tank), but I did use the tire pressure stand. There, a previous customer had just vacated the spot so the machine was still going. So I took advantage of the remaining time and made sure the flattening tire went up to 31 psi, which was how much the other rear tire was inflated.
The front tires were still fine. And with this errand out of the way, I hoped that the rear right tire won’t lose too much pressure for the rest of the trip.
Aside from this, we kept driving south on the M74 going the other way than earlier on passing by the turnoffs for New Lanark and even Moffat. At 8:55am, we stopped at a Welcome Break stop, but the fuel prices remained upwards of 1.41 pound per litre. This particular stop was our last one before we would leave Scotland and re-enter England on the way to North Wales…