Life at the end of the road

November 3, 2009

£200 at Lidl !!!!!!!!

Filed under: daily doings, harbour — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 8:25 pm

This must rank as the wettest ‘week off’ in living memory, which isn’t saying much really because my memory is pretty hopeless at the best of times. It has however, even by ‘wet coast’ standards been exceptionally damp. Yesterday, Monday was the day of the big shopping trip to Inverness, the fact that it was teeming with rain and, according to the forecast, likely to continue for the rest of the day made the prospect a little more bearable.

Going to Portree is stressful enough but having to cope with traffic lights, roundabouts as well as shopping is, in my book on a par with moving house or getting divorced 🙂 I don’t follow football but the day that Lidl pulled out of their plans to open a store in Portree was akin to Scotland not qualifying for the world cup in my book. I just love all that quirky stuff with labels in Greek or German that you can’t read, I mean where else can you get so many varieties of herring in everything from cream to vinegar. Have you ever seen octopus done in almonds at Tesco? well at least I thought that’s what it said on the jar!

The only thing that I don’t like about Lidl is the checkouts that are always too small to fit the mountain of stuff we buy, on them before I get the trolley round to the other end. Still we managed and then set off to try and pack it all into wifey’s ‘wee car’ whilst still leaving enough space to cram in our son on the way home. Two hundred quid and not even a drop of alcohol gives you some idea of the amount of chopped tomatoes, green olives and salami that we bought 🙂

Considering that it was a full moon and the ‘wee dug’ was being a proper pain in the ar5e all the way there and back the swineherd and I did well not to come to blows and we managed to make it back to Sconser in time for the 16:15 ferry. Just as well really because the pigs had of course to be fed and by the time we got back to Arnish it was almost 18:00 and well dark.

More rain

Reluctant does not even come close to describing how I felt about going out this morning. A very early night after the epic shopping trip and a sound sleep did nothing to improve my mood and it was only the need to get my boy to school that finally drove me out into the monsoon.

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There was a small river running down our drive undoing much of the work that I’d done the other day, all the drains were blocked with leaves and the tiny burn at the bottom of our croft was a river.

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That’s not it but one at Holoman which usually has a similar amount of water in it.

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I dunno what this grass? is in the middle of the picture but I do know that it’s the only patch of its kind on Raasay and it’s normally dry 🙂

Anyway we managed to get the boy to school without getting washed away and I loaded up my trailer with more stones to patch up the fresh holes in the drive after I’d cleared the drains.

More progress

As my Fuji S8000fd had arrived yesterday I wasted no time in trying it out on the new pier

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which is most definitely getting longer 🙂

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I even drove on the nice smooth black tarmac on my way past Raasay house

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which has  a big crane in front of it, a sure sign that finally, almost 11 months after the tragic fire, work is at last commencing on its restoration. Of course I could be completely wrong and the crane may be there because someone has spotted a hibernating bat in the ruins  and they’re making it safe for the bat until they can start work  in the spring 🙂

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Rain, rain and more rain was the order of the day with water appearing in places where I’d never seen water before.

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Once home and I’d deposited my trailer load in the holy road I retired for hot soup and a warm.

Not quite so wet

The afternoon was much better by comparison, had it been any ordinary day in November you’d have said it was miserable but after the morning it was quite pleasant, indeed I actually took my jacket off at one point.

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Making the most of the slightly less wet weather to change the piggies bedding

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in their unconventional housing.

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I also introduced the ‘spotties’ to their new home but not before the ‘Tammy’s’ had checked it out 🙂

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Eventually however it got their seal of approval and the swineherd and I moved onto Bramble.

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Or should I say we got on with moving Bramble. Bramble is due to farrow in a week or so but she’s looking like she might not be far off so we moved her into a nice insulated ark on her own. The two piglets in the foreground trying to cadge a drink as she passed by 🙂

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Once in her new field she helped wifey and I clear some of the ditches!

After the usual clearing up and putting stuff away in preparation for my ‘week on’ I fed the pigs early and called it a day. Having a good long hot soak before pulling out 7 bananas from the fruit bowl ready for tomorrow 🙂


  1. Hi Paul. I’m pleased that work has started on Raasay House. I wondered if it might be left in ruins.
    Hope that weather clears for next week. Plans are afoot for coming up.

    Comment by Rienza — November 3, 2009 @ 8:58 pm

    • Morning Rienza,

      Weather is at last bucking up after the cr4p of last week.

      Safe journey, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 7, 2009 @ 6:19 am

  2. Himself & I are just back from a trip to South Africa. Somewhere on our 3000 mile trek around the Western and Northern Cape, we passed a sort of scrap yard. I thought of you, it only contained white Land Rovers in various states of disrepair, about 30 of them.


    Comment by Frances Gibb — November 4, 2009 @ 9:11 am

    • Hi Frances,

      sounds like an interesting trip AND a visit to Land Rover heaven 🙂

      Cheers, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 7, 2009 @ 6:18 am

  3. Hi Paul,
    Great to see the crane picture;it confirms that work started yesterday on “stabilisation”, in other words taking down the most badly damaged sections so that the building will be safe. We hope that that will be finished by February next year, and rebuilding work will start in the spring. The plan is that the finished building will look the same from the outside as it used to (to all but the most expert eyes).

    Comment by Alison Macleod — November 4, 2009 @ 10:31 am

    • Good morning Alison,

      It really was great to see that crane in front of Raasay house the other day and a few extra people on the ferry heading there to do some work.

      Cheers, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 7, 2009 @ 6:16 am

  4. That grass in the pond picture might just be a bog that is showing itself. Some history and folklore behind them I was unaware of.

    Comment by C — November 4, 2009 @ 5:52 pm

    • It is Great Fen Sedge (Cladium mariscus). Want to know more? Try my flora or Raasay and Rona at

      Best, Stephen

      Comment by Stephen — November 6, 2009 @ 9:31 pm

    • Hi there C,

      Good to hear from you again and thanks for that very interesting link. There are no shortage of bogs on Raasay so who knows what lies within them. I know that I’ve removed telegraph poles from wet peaty ground that were put up in the 1930s and despite the upper parts being rotten the bit in the bog was still like new.

      Cheers, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 7, 2009 @ 6:14 am

  5. Thank god that Borrodale house has its licence back.
    Actually we were looking at the cuddly toys strung up trees especially the Koala bear up the Eucalyptus. How did that get there and whats the story behind them all?

    Comment by Dick Palmer — November 4, 2009 @ 7:09 pm

    • Hi Dick,

      Not sure what the story is behind all the cuddly toys, I think someone just put the Koala bear up the tree about 15 years ago and people followed suit.

      Cheers, Paul

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — November 7, 2009 @ 6:12 am

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