Life at the end of the road

April 25, 2009


Filed under: boats, daily doings, stonework — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:30 pm

No that is not the Vodafone voicemail phone number, it’s the number of people that did the charity walk/run or whatever it was for Marie curie! not the 70 that I’d mentioned yesterday. Which reminds me I must put some disclaimer at the beginning of this blogg telling people that due to my shocking hearing, terrible memory and propensity for embellishment that you should not actually take anything you read in here as gospel 🙂 Anyway I’ll try and get the day into some kind of order, starting with as ever the unhealthy amount of coffee I drink in the morning before I can function correctly and the feeding of the 7 pigs on the hill, I’ve just realised that I’ve called them piglets in past posts but at 50kg plus they are hardly that.

So with my wee darlings fed and my wheelie bins loaded up I headed the 11 miles south to work in my 23 year old truck to commence work on my 23 year old ship 🙂 Taking the low road past Raasay house and the Home farm that used to be part of it to have a look at Lachie Gillies’s handy work on a stone wall that is being built where the new road to the harbour meets the old road past the steading.

Now I know to most people this is just a pile of stones but I get quite excited about stone work and really must start a new catagory on the blog for it. After Ron’s heroic effort at the Raasay village hall

last year and  Jock plus Iain Macleod’s labours at the Raasay cemetery

jock and iain

I feel that a whole new ‘Stone’ section is required 🙂

The 8 mile walk!

Once at work with the big Volvo’s that drive the ferry and the Lister that makes the electricity on line and warmed up we loaded up and headed for Sconser with a few cars to return with the bin lorry. As it was pretty quiet we dug out the spare compass to check its serial number

for our records. Despite all the modern navigation aids of GPS, radar, and plotters the magnetic compass is still the most dependable method of navigation and this is our spare one. Is it not just beautiful! The next two sailings from Sconser were full of walkers

who were going to walk/run the 8 mile circuit past Oscaig along the low road then back on the high road past the youth hostel and back to the ferry

Lots more did happen, I spent the day finishing painting the deck, 121 walkers completed the circuit and a few of them got left behind at 14:30 as our PC (passenger certificate) is only for 75 passengers with a crew of 3. Still they all seemed in good spirits and the weather was good. Once the day was finished I headed north and home and the Atlas Marine tug Hermes headed back to Raasay from Portree.

I did have a look in the new Raasay children’s play park on the way home as last September as part of the ‘Marie Curie fields of hope’ campaign the Raasay school children had planted a load of daffodils and raised £550 pounds!  I thought it would be good to get get a pic of all the daffs they’d planted but of course I was about a month too late for the flowers and a week too late for the official opening of the play park 😦 Hopefully my Churchton correspondent Stuart Brown can supply some pictures of that event as I was busy fencing! and that’s it now guys I’m off to bed 🙂

Sunday AM

Oh I just remembered, wifey and the in laws went to Portree shopping today ( Saturday)

Fine parking!

Fine parking!

and because the wee Daihatsu is languishing in the 4th garage that cannot fix it she took her dads car. As you can see she’s not quite got used to parking it yet 🙂 and I think I’m going to regret sharing this picture with you. In all fairness the purser’s directions on where she should actually park the car were vague to say the least! anyway when they arrived home to her horror there were 7 wee spotty piglets in the garden digging up the flower beds! Fortunately they had discovered a case of Strongbow cider and were putting more effort into puncturing the cans with their teeth and drinking the contents than actually wrecking the flower beds!

SS Fingal

Whilst not in so good a condition as the spare compass off the MV Loch Striven here is what’s left of the main compass of a small Norwegian steamship lying in around 25m of water off Barra.

SS Fingal, compass bowl and gimbal

SS Fingal, compass bowl and gimbal

A quick search of the internet has revealed nothing and I’ve not got my diving logs from the early 80s handy so I can’t give you the tonnage or dimensions but I seem to remember she was pretty flattened and carrying rock or perhaps it was just ballast. What I do remember quite clearly though was the Northern Lights Vessel Fingal was nearby when I was diving on her namesake!

Blog at