Saturday dawned bright and sunny. Breakfast at the Argyll Hotel was tasty with a respectable selection of breakfast dishes. We could help ourselves to the usual fruit juices, cereals and yogurt. And of course, there was one of those odd toasters that always look scary to me. Warm food included porridge, a full Scottish breakfast and a full vegetarian breakfast. Eggs could be cooked to taste, and they would accommodate any reasonable requests.
After breakfast we picked up a treasure trail booklet from reception. This had twenty clues to be solved. Each clue was in a box and in between were instructions on how to get to the clue. We started by turned right into Argyll Street.
The answers to the first few clues were found in shop and business windows. Some were obvious, but others less so and we had to pay attention. Some considerable time later we were still walking down Argyll Street and I was wishing I’d remembered to take a pain killer. The ‘date above the Commercial Bar’ almost beat us until we looked high enough up.
Further down the street we turned into a park and passed by a doctor’s surgery stopping only to check the name of one of the GPs. Not too far after, we crossed the Milton Burn and checked the colours on the wall of a nursery.
As we walked on, we kept expecting and really hoping, that we would start heading back towards the Hotel. But it was some time later when we reached the seafront and started making our way back.
The first bench we came to was one of the clues but I’m afraid that did not stop us sitting on it. We sat for quite a while enjoying the sun and the view over the Clyde. To be fair we admitted to any other treasure hunters who passed by, that we were sitting in front of the clue. Our honesty was repaid later when we were helped with the last few clues.
After we left the bench we walked along Alexandra Parade looking for the Seasons Coffee House.
‘Coffee House?’ I said hopefully.
So, some time later we collapsed on a sofa in the Seasons Coffee House where the lovely staff helped us with the next clue.
‘It’s not cheating,’ said Margaret. ‘It’s using our initiative.’
Round the corner we realised we were back at the hotel.
Rather naively our sojourn at the coffee house had convinced us to carry on with the rest of the clues, despite the warning on the next clue that we were to climb a steep hill to the church. Steep! It was more like perpendicular and just when we thought we were getting close to the end it would turn a corner and carry on. By half way up, Dorothy bounded away from us and Margaret and I crawled up on hands and knees. Well not quite but you get the idea.
After the church yard we headed back downhill towards the castle area.
‘The clue says we have to climb back up another hill next,’ I said cheerfully.
A car passed.
‘We should have hitched a ride,’ said Margaret.
It wouldn’t have done any good because it stopped a few yards down at the end of the road.
At the castle we stood looking despairingly at the mound.
‘At least we are still half way up,’ I said, not even convincing myself as I used my phone to desperately try and find the answer online.
‘At least there are stairs,’ Margaret said.
‘Oh, that makes it so much better,’ I said unconvincingly. ‘We have to go all the way up to the flagpole.’
Dorothy kindly offered to go up for us, so Margaret and I contributed to the treasure trail by sitting looking over the Clyde and trying to work out where the next few clues were. OK we sat and chilled out enjoying the sun and the view.
Some time later we agreed we’d have to move. The next few clues were set in the gardens at the front of the castle. Unrealistically, we hoped they meant the small bit right outside the castle where we had been sitting. But no, they were all over the large gardens down the rest of the hill.
By this time even Dorothy was wilting so when some of our fellow hunters offered to help us with a couple of the clues, we jumped at the chance. We had great fun trying to read the war memorial for a clue as it was surrounded by the ubiquitous fences. It seemed the whole of the front at Dunoon was a building site.
The last clue was inside the hotel, so I went to find it while Margaret searched for an apron to complete her waitress outfit for the evening. Dorothy opted to go shopping with Margaret. I completed the entry form for the treasure hunt and thankfully headed to our room.
Margaret searched every shop in Dunoon but failed to get an apron to complete her outfit.
We agreed that the treasure hunt had been an excellent idea. Not only did it pass several hours, but it took us round parts of Dunoon we wouldn’t have seen if left to our own devices. Of course, the weather was ideal. Bright and sunny without being too hot. I don’t think we’d have done all that trailing about in the rain.